I haven’t shared an excerpt from my humorous memoir, A Dead Tomato Plant and a Paycheck, in quite a while, so I thought I would do that for today. I really can’t do Monday Morning Musings because I am actually writing this on Sunday. Tomorrow I will be out of pocket all day. Enjoy…..
Nothing is worse than having everyone in the family sick at the same time. At least when you take turns, passing a flu bug around like a hot potato, someone is always well enough to tend to the rest of the folks. But when everyone is sick, guess who has to grit her teeth and make chicken soup?
You guessed it. Mom.
One year was particularly bad at our house. I was on the losing side of a persistent flu bug that hung around for four or five weeks. And I used to think a 24-our bug was bad.
That particular run of the flu reached the point where the kids took numbers in the morning to see who would get to stay home from school that day. I could only handle one or two sickies at a time, especially the sickies who didn’t act sick. Nothing was more wearing than a kid who threw up one minute and knocked his brother senseless the next.
Why couldn’t they take a cue from us adults and just stay on the couch in a semi-comatose position and just moan a lot?
And why did they have to eat. Imagine yourself with a stomach that feels like Mt. St. Helen’s revisited, and the sweet aroma of chili dogs and nacho cheese chips comes drifting in from the kitchen. Have they never heard of chicken soup and weak tea?
Usually, when it came to the delicate art of juggling kids to see who got to stay home, my natural instincts served me well, but one day my judgment must have been clouded by my own raging fever. The kid I elected to keep home — the kid who was at death’s doorway with a terrible sore throat and a headache at eight in the morning — spent half his day with his head out the door playing with the dog and the other half of the day fixing snacks. The kid who went to school with a vague complaint of a stomach ache was sent home right after the stomach ache voluntarily removed itself from the vague status.
And through it all, I spent a great deal of time on the sofa in a semi-comatose position, moaning a lot.