I’m 43 and I have mononucleosis (a.k.a. glandular fever), the common variety caused by the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV). That virus is one of the most ubiquitous human infections on Earth; 95% of people are infected with EBV by the time they’re 35 (I guess I rolled a 1 on my saving throw). The later you get it, the worse the disease is. Kids often suffer no symptoms or maybe appear to have a cold, but it is a classic teen disease – even though teens only exhibit mono about 50% of the time upon contracting the virus.
When the hematologist confirmed it yesterday, she looked at me and asked, “HOW old are you?!”
I’ve been knocked into bed for 18-20 hours a day. I no longer have the muscle pain and the headaches have gone for the most part, but I’m still exhausted most of the time. My throat finally got sore last Saturday, followed soon by earaches and bouts of random itchy patches all over my body – another known symptom.
The worst part is that is incredibly difficult to concentrate for more than 15 minutes at a time. I can’t even watch TV; it’s just too hard. I live on the laptop in bed, which I can always set aside and come back to.
It could take a month and a half until I feel well enough to get up and about, but I think I’m feeling a little better already. Except my nose, the right side of which still hurts from those goddamned tubes.