I know...it's been a LONG time since I've posted here. Well, let's see....I got bronchitis over Labor Day weekend, last September, and I've had it ever since. My doctor says I now have COPD (chronic bronchitis). I've been coughing nonstop. I've been to urgent care 3x, and my own doctor twice. Yadda, yadda, yadda...antibiotics, inhalers, even pill steroids....NOTHING has helped. You know what has helped me the most? Thyme tea. Yes...oh, and cooking onions and then putting them in a sock while still hot (on my chest and inhaling the fumes). Of course, I SMELLED like onions, but WHO CARES? I was sick anyway! Now I've ordered a bunch of essential oils from Mountain Rose Herbs: http://www.mountainroseherbs.com/ and I make up batches of a thyme/castille soap disinfectant, which I keep in horse-sized spray bottles. I spray EVERYTHING at school with it (not the kids, though!)...I DID get a flu shot and then I DID get the flu two weeks later...hmmm...exactly two weeks after I returned to school after winter break! Funny coincidence, eh? I was "down and out" for 3 days and now I've used up ALL my paid sick leave and if I get sick again and I don't have a doctor's note, I get docked...SIT DOWN...$600 A DAY! Yikes! Guess I'll be heading to my doctor for a note when (not "if") I get sick AGAIN! I've noticed that I just can't fight off the kids' germs. I wash my hands, I have TONS of hand sanitizer on my desk and theirs, I wash my hands, but it's hard to avoid getting sick in a classroom of 30 kids! I was helping one girl one day with her math. She wiped the snot running out of her nose ... WITH HER HAND!~ I said, "GO wash your hands right now!" and of course, she proceeded to sneeze right then and there ON ME! I knew I was a goner! And, I was. Now, I have a letter from HR (human resources) advising me to have a doctor's note OR ELSE! ...sigh...what's a teacher to do?