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My Nose is Stuffy All the Time

by Rebecca Dance

As is my constant complaint, I do not understand what the weather in Virginia is doing on any given day. In addition to this, I do not know how to handle allergies or having a cold. I turn into a baby as soon as one of my nostrils becomes blocked. 

So, this past week has been a version of my own personal hell. It’s been too hot, Google says I’m allergic to the mold growing on fallen leaves, and the flu is spreading rapidly across campus. Two of these things are factually true (the flu and the heat), while the other (my apparent allergy) is a theory based on the extreme pressure in my sinuses that rivals the deep sea. Add the heat to the buildings and the dry air in my dorm, and I have had to revert back through evolution and become a mouth breather. 

We all know about the struggle of temperature here on campus – it’s cold in the morning and hits the high sixties to eighty by midday, and going back and forth between buildings and the outdoors is the secret tenth circle of hell. I think that Fintel Library has to be the worst culprit of this situation, and I work there four days a week. I’ve started keeping an extra shirt in my bag in the event that the basement becomes a sauna. 

So back to my nose. I can’t use it to funnel oxygen to my lungs, so I am forced to breathe with my mouth open. This is fine, if you like chapped lips and a sore throat. I can fix the chapped lips with chapstick, but the sore throat is an unholy mixture of post-nasal drip and the hot, dry air that I have to breathe in these buildings. I’m also a hypochondriac, so the sore throat and stuffy nose have me checking my temperature every few hours and on high-alert for other flu symptoms. 

Three cheers for fall.