12 December 2010

The hills are alive

...with the sound of illness.

I suppose it's fitting given the way the rest of the week went (I'm opting to believe that today is the end of last week rather the beginning of next week).

The cat didn't start singing for his breakfast until 6:30 am, which was something, but then I was reawakened an hour later by the sound of the daughter being sick. So far, every half an hour...

And somewhere in the midst of cleaning up and doing laundry and planning for everyone else to go down with the stomach bug in the coming week, I suddenly realized that my throat was really sore. And that I was sneezing rather a lot. And that I had this irritating, raspy cough.


While I tuck the daughter back into bed and stroke her hair, looking at her pale and unhappy face, I search for perspective. She is a strong and healthy girl with a bad dose of what's probably Norovirus. This is misery, but it's not a child whose already precarious health is being threatened by cholera. Yes, I hate having a runny nose. Yes, cleaning the bathroom every half an hour is a pain, but I have a bathroom to clean.

Still, it's never easy watching one's children get ill. Harder when they're younger, but they seem to return to that young and vulnerable state when they don't feel well. Relentlessly, I run through checklists in my head: fever? headache? rash? disorientation? dehydration? Also indicators for? And I know it's a fool's errand to set myself on this path, but it's how my brain works: what if I miss something crucial?

Possibly one of my more unfortunate tendencies.

Then as I stroke her hair and watch her eyelids flutter closed, I remind myself that I am fortunate that this, too, will pass.

Go listen to some good music: "The Sound of Music" from the album The Sound of Music [Original Soundtrack], music and lyrics by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. Even though I want to whine, I don't cut myself a lot of slack with this sort of thing; I know that we're lucky to have a roof over our heads, access to health care and so on. Maybe one of my better tendencies. Still, ugh, I cannot emphasize how much I hate dealing with stomach illness. *shudder*

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