I hate being sick. Now I’m sure most people don’t like being sick—although our kids love laying in our bed with a down comforter over them and watching DVDs until their eyes melt and run down their cheeks. If that weren’t enough, I come and bring them delectable treats like Sprite (the kids never get to drink soda) and crackers. Okay, crackers aren’t exciting, but when you’re sick they are. But, you get the picture, being sick can sort of be fun when you’re a kid. Okay, okay, let me put in a disclaimer here before I get all kinds of comments from my children…yes, I do make them do schoolwork if their fever isn’t over 100. But I only make them do reading and math. Don’t gasp. Math is easy for them—if they had to choose a subject to do, it would be math.
Back to the subject. As an adult, especially a mom, there is no redeeming value to being sick. You lie on the couch and watch your house fall apart. It doesn’t take long before the laundry is spilling out of the hampers. Right now, I see a black sock in the middle of the living room floor. Why is it there? Who knows? I find it hard to believe that no one in the past 24 hours has noticed that sock. My basket of ironing, which is supposed to be done on Thursday is, even now, reproducing. Have you ever noticed that when you get behind in ironing, even one day behind, the seven shirts that need to be ironed become 14? I’m convinced that there’s a “rabbit gene/jean” in the ironing basket.
I don’t even want to talk about the kitchen. Though, of course, I must point out that the kids have been doing the dishes. But no one seems to notice that the counters are oases of germs, bacteria, and food filth. All right, Ariel did wipe the counter last night, but the stove is still coated with brown burnt splotches, which apparently is the fault of Luke overspraying the Teflon pan and getting Pam all over the stove.
Speaking of Luke cooking, this morning I noticed him cooking his own high protein breakfast—bacon and eggs, which will be followed by a big bowl of cereal. But I noticed him using a metal spatula on a Teflon pan! I wanted to shout, “NO!” But it came out as a croak followed by a hacking cough.
Jacob and Matthew have their own response to my sickness. As soon as they hear I’m sick, they present me with arguments reasoning that it would be better for my health to let them skip school and play computer/Wii/games/read/do puzzles/etc., all day long. I give them my don’t-waste-what-little-cognitive-power-I-still-possess look, and they break out in peals of giddy laughter.
Also when I’m sick, Jezebel is bored. So, she decided to alleviate her boredom by chewing on the tassels of a table runner. Of course, she’s sly so I’ve never actually seen her do it. I’ve just seen bits of tassel on the floor. She also is fascinated by the smell of “cold.” Whenever my face is within range, she runs over and sniffs my nose. Big,wet doggie sniffs followed by a healing lick across the face.
In the vein of full-disclosure, I must admit that I’m not the best patient. I do get up and clean the stove when I should be lying down. And I cough, sneeze, smell like Vick’s Vapo-rub and run the vaporizer all day, which makes the inside our house like a swamp even though it's ten degrees outside. The problem is that I can’t take decongestants. Apparently, I’m sensitive to them, they make my hands shake, I have auditory hallucinations, they make my heart beat too fast (tachycardia) and I get chest pains.
Hopefully, I’ll be better soon. Calvin went to the store and bought me vitamin C and cranberry juice, which he sternly warned the kids, was only for mom to drink. But I’m beginning to suspect that this isn’t an ordinary cold. This is a hybrid virus, which resulted from the cross of a normal cold virus with a strain of basement-altered-sanitary-sewer-line-misery virus. Yep. That’s it. Better call the CDC.