My aunts used to say that the weather is one of those things we can only prepare for and hope it shows us mercy. Erring on the side of caution, they would leave the house equipped with umbrellas (because they serve for protection from rain, sun, and possible assailants,) and hand fans; they also kept in their wallets those small plastic head covers that were folded into a tiny square, but that served the purpose of helping preserve a fresh-from-the-salon do… These days, I carry an umbrella, fan myself with whatever I can press into service from my purse, have sunscreen handy at all times and still wouldn’t be caught dead with one of those folded pieces of plastic. The heatwave we experienced over the past few days, however, could not really be managed through any of those means, and it took its toll on me.
I am not one for lazing about. If you’ve ever met me and spent enough time with me, you will understand why my husband refers to me as the very definition of perpetual motion. I seem to be spring-loaded is what I’ve been told. I’ve been falsely accused of always having something to do. I’ve also been told that there isn’t a single furniture arrangement that I’m ever completely pleased with and I “move furniture” in my mind. OK, that last one might be true…
That I have been sidelined by a combination of excessive heat and a flaring up of my dreaded iron-deficiency anemia/NOS (which means Not Otherwise Specified rather than Needs Oatmeal Steadily or No Organ Spared as I believed for a while) is mortifying to me. But there you have it…I seem to be the Energizer Bunny without batteries, or with the old Eveready batteries that had the black cat jumping through one of the letters. I have, for the time being, run out of juice and am being made to…gasp…rest! Mortifying and irritating in the extreme. I’ve read a whole novel, completed several crossword puzzles, made lists of lists of things to do, watched several movies, and basically complained incessantly about my tiredness until everyone else in the house was equally tired. In other words, I’ve achieved very little.
I would like to point out that there is a reason why I’ve mentioned my current state of laziness…
A few days ago I rigged a plastic crate to use for conveying items from the kitchen balcony to the lower level. J has thoroughly enjoyed this development. Not only did he like it when he first started receiving items via this mode of transportation, he then started loving the idea of handling it himself. Several times a day we would see him climb the stairs to the kitchen, load bottles of water or other things into the crate, lower it carefully, take the stairs back down, empty the crate and then return to the kitchen to retrieve it. The novelty, as of yet, hasn’t worn off…and J, seeing that I am spending a great deal of time on the couch bemoaning my fate until my iron supplement and the iron-rich diet I’m consuming kick in, has been having a grand old time with the crate.
“I KNOW what you are doing!,” I say from my corner. J stops mid-leap…his giggle dies down and I get a “look” from him. A look that says “excuse me? What DO you mean?” He comes closer and plants his hats more firmly on his head. “Just like you’re autistic, not stupid, I’m anemic and it hasn’t affected my eyesight or my intelligence. I know what you’re up to, McJ!” J straightens up and goes into full Foghorn Leghorn mode. Or Daffy Duck…it all depends on how energetic I seem at the moment. “Have all the fun you can now, young man, because I will be getting up no later than Tuesday and it will be spectacular!!!”
J flashes a smile that says “there, there, poor darling! You are hallucinating! We REALLY must give you more spinach. How about another lovely piece of fish???” He runs out to the dangling crate, extracts a bottle of water and brings it to me. WATER. “Yeah, yeah, buddy, I see the water, but I KNOW that if I get up…” J gives me a look that is part patient and part irritated, covers me with a blanket and pats me on the head. SIT. SIT. SIT. BYE!
The whole thing about him coming into his own is a double-edged sword. Two seconds is all it takes for him to re-arrange the rotation pattern of the whole planet. One walks into the store, leaving him and his brother in the car, and a text message interrupts “J wants what’s on his list.” What list?, I ask out loud. A trip back to the car reveals that the list that only had water, ice and milk when I prepared it now boasts BACON, SODA and CEREAL of a specific brand. Two seconds. I walk back to the car with said items and J inspects the bags. “Where did he get the notion about BACON?,” I ask no one in particular. TGG says “Sunday…tomorrow’s Sunday. Sunday is bacon.” J says SUNDAY BACON. “Don’t put ideas in his head!,” I whisper. TGG says “I wasn’t even in the room when he put those there. He took it out of his pocket after you guys left the car and pointed to my cell phone.” “Well,” I say,” so long as when we get home we hide the LOBSTER, CRAB, SCALLOPS and FILET MIGNON PECS we should be fine.”
This morning, as we walked to the bus, J offered his arm to me. He knows I’m not at 100% operational strength, and he also knows (because he was watching) that I took my iron supplement as soon as TGG brought it this morning from the pharmacy. “I’ll be feeling better when you get home,” I told him, and he smiled. We stood and sang and signed and off he went. At noon I was waiting for him, and I looked as pale as I did in the morning. He came up to me and patted my head. “Getting better!,” I chimed, and he offered me his arm again.
I am hoping that by tomorrow the spring is fully back in my step…he now runs into the room, checks if I’m awake and then moves quickly past me with his back turned and holding things behind him while he smiles broadly. I haven’t heard any hammering, but I cannot swear on a stack of Bibles that J hasn’t built himself a silo when I wasn’t up to chasing after him…
And another bowl of spinach for me… 🙂