When God made mothers, he knew what he was doing. I definitely caught the same bug the boys were passing around, but I remained functional. Not a meal was missed; no laundry accumulated; no chore went ignored. I recovered with the same amount of alacrity women usually apply to bouncing back from whatever ails them while still taking care of brood and home. Over-the-counter remedies (heinous though they may taste) worked well enough and here I am, not much worse for wear, and right on time, too…
Yesterday morning it was Dada’s turn to go to Urgent Care. Now, the times I’ve had to go to Urgent Care for any ailment, I’ve been sent home with an “it’s just a cold, take some Tylenol and drink lots of fluids.” At most they’ve told me to rest and take some over-the-counter syrup for that cough. There isn’t one man in this household who hasn’t gone to Urgent Care without having to stop at the drugstore for a prescription on the way home. Not a single one of them has come home without a return-to-work-in-four-days note.
Yesterday, the loveliest man in the world came home with a syrup that would have helped King Kong calm down in the middle of one of his worst rampages. He is feeling better today, of course, but yesterday he was pretty much useless and, by the way, he doesn’t have to go to work until Tuesday. Maybe I never get a return-to-work-four-days-from-now note because, well, the NPs and doctors at Urgent Care know that if I don’t work, the world goes to hell in a hand basket.
I won’t go over how I’ve been making soup, fluffing pillows, making sure people take their medication, etc., etc., etc. because that’s ground we’ve covered in the past. I won’t even make a big deal out of how my soup came from a can while theirs was home-made from nice plump chicken pieces. Of course, this treatment has run into the low-fiber diet that Dada must follow prior to his colonoscopy. So on the one hand I’m fending off all the melodrama that ensued from the cold while trying to make a man who can only eat “what is on the list” until Wednesday when he’s on clear liquids until he comes home from the procedure on Thursday.
And anyone who says God doesn’t have a sense of humor hasn’t really been paying attention.
In the midst of all this, J protested because too much attention was being paid to the aquiline nose than to his own. The funny thing about it is that he made a distinct point out of sounding more nasal when he spoke. Friday evening, when Dada came home from work complaining and sneezing, J immediately turned on his most congested-sounding voice to say “I VANT PEET-ZAH” I had to fight the urge to laugh because I didn’t want him to think that I was taking his complaint lightly. “ZEN-U” was another funny one…especially since I sat at the top of the stairs and could hear him singing with nary a congested sound coming out of him. But no sooner would he hear that step that creaks and, quite loudly, the feigned sneezing and “WOH-WOH” and “KWEEN MAH NOH-TH” would come out of his lovely, downturned mouth.
This act went on (perhaps in hopes of earning himself an Academy Award nomination?) until yesterday morning. To say that J was imitating all the zombie extras from The Walking Dead would be an understatement. Moaning and groaning, he made his way to the kitchen and complained loudly as I served his breakfast. OOoooooh aaaaAAAAh KWEEN-MAH-NOH-TH… It was quite pitiful, and it had to stop. The sight of the contents of an entire box of Kleenex strewn all over his bed (unused, of course, but definitely crumpled up for effect) was what triggered my next move.
“Hey, J. How are you feeling?,” I asked in my softest voice as I sat on the edge of his bed. I’ve seen Basset Hounds with happier expressions than J’s. OOOOooooh aaaaAAAAAAAh MAH NOH-TH! “Oh, poor baby. You’re not feeling well???,” I said as all two-hundred plus pounds leaned heavily against me and he threw my arms around his shoulders. Groan. OOOOoooooh aaaaAAAAAh… “Ok, then, sweetie. Dada is going to the doctor so you can go with him!”
If there was a moment to say Praise the Lord and Hallelujah, it’s a miracle!, that was it…J sprung from bed and stood up, literally dancing a jig. NO NO, NO DOCTOR…and he even turned on his radio and, giggling, started dancing while making his bed. “Wow! You look all better!,” I said. Very gently, my lovely boy (he of the groaning and moaning mere minutes before) grabbed my arm and led me out of his room, chanting BYE BYE BYE BYE BYE.
Click. He closed the door behind me, and I could hear him giggling in his room.
For effect and confirmation, of course, Dada -dressed and ready- walked to J’s door and knocked. HELLO! came the answer. Dada poked his head in; J was sitting on his bed. “Ready to go?,” Dada said, sounding infinitely sicker than J had managed at the height of his efforts. BYE! BYE! BYE! and, leaping enthusiastically, J grabbed his laundry basket and headed down to the basement.
“Ha! You can almost hear him saying places to go, people to see, things to do!,” Dada said. Indeed, I told him, now he knows that we go to where we say we’re going, and the last place he wants to find himself on a Saturday morning is the doctor’s office. J did not emerge from the basement until he heard the garage door open and close again…
We are on the mend. Some faster than others. Some more legitimately than others. And may this be the end of the cold and flu season in this household…