My Battle With Man-Flu And How I Survived - StrongLife

My Battle With Man-Flu And How I Survived


I’m a lucky man to be able to write this today having battle man-flu for over 13 days…

It has been a tough few weeks and I’m only feeling right today.

Many people don’t believe in Man-Flu but I can tell ya, it’s a Grade 9 sickness.

Here’s my story of how I escaped impending death and made it through man-flu.

Twas a few nights after Christmas,

And all through the house,

Not a creature was stirring,

Because they had all left me as they couldn’t put up with listening to me whine.

My mother even threatened to throw me in a boghole if I didn’t pipe down. A threat I hadn’t heard since childhood.


It all started on St. Stephen’s Day.

I tipped into the gym to get a bit of lifting done and try and work off those extra 647 sweets I had and the 7 desserts.

But only 10 minutes in, I knew something wasn’t right.

Nothing moved well, everything felt heavy (not just me) and I felt drained.

Little did I know that in 48 hours I was going to be hit with the freight train that is man-flu.

On December 28th, I woke feeling normal.

I trudged on down to the bathroom while having a conversation with myself if it was okay to have cheesecake for breakfast.

But it soon took a turn for the worse when a gale force wind erupted from my mouth while brushing my teeth.

I was shocked for a moment knowing that I was coming down with a flu but it soon turned to solid thickness when I looked at the mirror covered in toothpaste.

I made a few emergency calls (to my mother) and after an hour the diagnosis was confirmed.

I had came down with the feckin flu.

Now for the first day or two, I done nothing but blame everyone around me for giving me it.

But it soon turned into self pity.

I had developed the face of a stray dog looking in a butcher’s window when anyone asked me how I was feeling.

Nobody cared.


As the days went by, my head felt like the weight of an anvil, I rattled around the house like the butler out of Tomb Raider (I used to love locking him in the freezer) and I was coughing and spluttering like Onslow’s car in Keeping Up Appearances.

After a few days, I braved going into town. It was a big mistake.

As strolling through town, I happened to meet a lady who stopped for a chat.

30 seconds into conversation and a bubble came out of my nose. I hope to never meet said lady again.


It was almost as embarrassing as the time I was in the Gaeltacht.

We were on some trip one day during summer and I was strolling along the beach.

Now unfortunately, I suffer from a bad dose of hay fever.

Out of nowhere I let a sneeze of such magnitude that it made me backfire too. Quite loudly.

I had been violated by my own body.

But worse still, the 3 hottest girls on the trip were walking behind me.

They were last seen exiting Earth’s stratosphere. The search continues.


January 3rd, I went back to work.

Not an ounce of sympathy was received.

Extra squats will be forced up them in the coming weeks.

By last Friday, my voice was resembling a mixture of Ronnie Drew and Kermit the Frog.

It was like puberty all over again.


Friday night took a major turn for the worse.

During the night, a large beam of light entered my room. I was delirious, sweaty and feverish.

This was it. This was the end.

God was coming down to take me away. It was all over.

It wasn’t actually, after a minute I realised I had fallen asleep with the light on.

But I was close to it.


Saturday morning I woke with a mouth on me like Ghandi’s flip flop.

A pint of water later and I peeled the tongue off the back of me throat.

I let a cough out of me like the fella down the back of the church at 11am mass who sounds like he eats 20 Major for breakfast.

But overall, I was coming around.


I rang my mother to tell her.

She wouldn’t answer.

I called up to show her.

She had changed the locks.

I must’ve been really sick if she didn’t want to make contact with me in case she got it.

I don’t blame her.


By Sunday I was feeling good again.

I had my voice back.

The sweats were gone.

The cough had subsided to Zoolander’s “Black Lung”.

The head was clear and mucus free.


I had battled through the worst dose of Man-Flu ever recorded in mankind.

I had defied what Google had told me that was wrong with me.

People were actually willing to listen to me once again.

I retracted my request for Joe Mahon’s Undertaker to call up and measure me.

I deleted the emergency contacts off my phone.

I went back to eating food instead of Strepsils for dinner.


It was all over.

I made it.


If you’re suffering from the dreaded Man-Flu, I hope this will help you see the light.

There is a way back.

Just sit tight and you’ll pull through.

Moan and whinge as much as you can. It helps, I promise.

Get a bell at your bedside to ring when you need assistance or a sponge bath.

Netlflix and a good blanket is all you need.

And last of all.

Make sure everyone knows you’re sick. They might claim you’re “over exaggerating” but don’t heed them. This is a matter of life or death.

Live long and prosper.



Colm Duignan

Colm Duignan

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