Every year I get afflicted by the same virus whenever the cold and dry winds start blowing into Karachi from Quetta. This year, despite taking anti-allergic medication regularly, I was laid low by the same fucking virus (which seems to be growing in strength every year).

It lasts more than a week at times, and leaves me coughing out phlegm for the rest of the winter. I have tried researching why phlegm is formed, yet have not been able to find an answer. It's no use asking doctors and specialists (on whom I've spent fortunes), as they are clueless about it. All they know is that taking anti-allergic pills, using a nebulizer and inhaling steam can reduce the virus's effects.

The virus also attacks the whole body, causing severe back ache and pain all over. I can't think why I am the most affected in my family, perhaps I was born with defective lungs. This year it has plunged me into depression, at times making me wonder why I was ever born. My father was asthmatic and would cough out phlegm throughout the year, perhaps I inherited it from him.

Today is the fifth day, and I hope it goes away by tomorrow. I'm due to take some tests to determine if I should have an operation to remove my prostate or not. I know that right now I can't take the tests as this virus may affect the results. I also know that if I get tested for Covid, it might be positive, despite there being no fever.