I Have Been Sick This Whole Week

Oren Cohen
3 min readDec 1, 2023

Hey friend,

How have you been this week?

I’ve been sick with an ear infection and have been on sick days since Sunday.

Over this week, I spent most of my time resting, watching TV shows, and playing Anno 1800. It’s a great game to pass the time while providing endless dopamine hits. It’s been a while since I played it before this week. Playing it was a good opportunity to realize my DLC Season Pass was a good purchase.

I’ve never had ear infections as an adult, and I’m a heavy wearer of earbuds. So it got me thinking: what prompted this?

And the only link I could think of was my visit to the ear doctor the week before. I got my earwax cleaned. I don’t usually suffer from a lot of earwax but over the last few months, it bugged me enough to go for it.

So, that doctor sucked my ear wax with a metal tube that I’m pretty sure I heard him decontaminate with hot… air? There was something he put it into before putting it in my ear.

Could this be it? Could he fucked that up so my ear ended up with someone else’s viruses?

So, as the days went by and my sheer terror of calling out sick accumulated, I also started getting better. On Tuesday, I was pretty sure I’d go to sleep and wake up “normal,” but you can guess that didn’t happen. In fact, instead of waking up “normal,” that first ear still bugged me, but now the other one joined in.

I was now hearing as if I was in a plane. You can’t really call it hearing reduction because I still hear things, but it’s highly muffled now.

My family doctor wasn’t working on Wednesday, so I called the online doctor service. I had never used that service before, and it was pretty buggy. Eventually, I managed to talk to a doctor, and he told me that he was giving me ear drops to relieve pain. This is not treatment; it’s just symptom management. And that I should visit my primary doctor.

Yesterday I met with my primary doctor, who prescribed some ear drops. Those are actually treating the ear instead of reducing pain. I’m still in pain in my right ear, but my left one seems to be doing better.