I have been in Michigan for almost a week and tomorrow I will be at Horizon Books in Cadillac from 1-3 in the afternoon. If you live near Cadillac, I’d love for you to stop by. 115 S. Mitchell Street
Cadillac, MI 49601
The following is an excerpt from my humorous memoir, A Dead Tomato Plant and a Paycheck. The book is still looking for a home, but a door has been opened. I have a publisher who has asked for the full proposal, so maybe, maybe…. Enjoy.
Have you ever noticed that when a kid is sick, he expects meals in bed, unlimited sympathy and continuous entertainment? Or when a husband is sick, he simply takes the day off work, stays in bed, and accepts juice, aspirin, and a kind word in four hour intervals? But heaven help a mother who has a cold or the 24-hour flu. Somehow she has to carry on as if all was well, and about the only way she can get any sympathy or understanding is to be approaching death’s doorway. Even then, one of the kids might ask if she has the time to wash his soccer uniform before she passes from this earthly life.
I’d like to see some type of parent-child contract drawn up that would grant equal time, consideration, and cough medicine in the middle of the night to mothers.
I’d like to see a clause included in this contract stating emphatically that when a child comes home from school to find his mother still in her robe, it doesn’t mean that she was just too lazy to get dressed that day.
If a mother has red watery eyes and a runny nose, it isn’t from peeling onions or from watching a sad scene in an afternoon soap opera.
If a mother’s face appears to be unusually flushed, it isn’t from the exhilaration of an afternoon tryst.
If a mother is making 25 trips to the bathroom in an hour, it isn’t just from a need for some solitude and serenity.
If a mother doesn’t have the strength to drag her body off the couch to cook dinner, it isn’t because she wore herself out playing tennis all day.
I used to believe that if we could get our families to recognize the fact that we were indeed sick, then we could work on getting them to respond in a positive helpful manner. To accomplish that goal, I considered making a big sign and hanging it in the living room where everyone could see it as they come in the door:
“Attention! The mother in this house is sick and has gone to bed. Do not disturb unless extreme emergency arises. (Needing to go to volleyball practice does not qualify.) Somebody cook supper. Wash your own dishes and gym clothes. It would be nice if someone came to check on me in about four hours to see if I’m still alive and to bring me some orange juice. Love, Mom.”