The Sneeze

Shh!!

Did you hear that?

That noise from the other room. It sounded like a sniffle or maybe a little sneeze. Who’s in there? Oh, God please let it be one of the kids!!

I do a quick inventory. The oldest is at work and therefore, out of earshot.  The Girl is sitting across the room, head bopping to whatever it is she’s listening to on her headphones.  The Boy?  Where is he?  Could that sickly noise have been his?   Oh, please, oh, please let it be him!!   Nope.  He’s in his room, simulating a demolition derby with every single car he owns.

Damn!!

That only leaves one person.  Not the sweet little babies that you want to cuddle and comfort.  Not the adolescents that you tuck into warm beds with their favorite (and usually abandoned) stuffed bear.

No.  It’s the one person that you NEVER want to be sick.

It’s the husband.

And he has “The Man Flu”.

Damn!!

Days upon days of moaning and whining.  Requests for water, snacks, and drugs of various kinds.  Tylenol, cough drops, and nasal spray.  Crackers and Sprite.  Tissues, hot pads and ice packs.  Sometimes random requests that have no bearing on any illness known to mankind.

All of this for a simple, drippy nose kind of cold.  Not pneumonia.  Not diphtheria or malaria.  Just a runny nose.  When this happens, I’m lucky if he showers, let alone helps around the house.

After a couple of days of “doctoring”, he drags himself to the dinner table, so weak and malnourished (the food he’s eaten while “sick” doesn’t count) that he devours everything in sight.  He then announces that he’ll help clear the table and take care of the dishes. (*gasp*)  Before I have a chance to be thankful, he tells the kids, “clean up the kitchen for your mother!” and then he strolls back into the living room, plops down in the recliner and starts channel surfing.

Oh well.  A least he’s back to normal and the house can now resume its regular rhythm.

Until…

Shh!!

Did you hear that?  That little noise, like a cough or a sneeze.

Oh wait. It’s just Mom.

Carry on, family.

~Jennifer – who is sickly but carrying on.

A Vacation Within A Vacation

Today is the eleventh, and final, day of my vacation.  Out of the eleven days that I have been off work, every single person that lives in this house has been here every day.  Every single minute of every one of those days.  This has made for a very  l o n g  eleven days.

Tonight has been the highlight of my vacation.

Why?

Because at the moment, there is no one in the house except for me.

The husband left for work this afternoon, the little kids are with my sister (because they still have three days of winter break left), and the teenager is at his girlfriend’s.  I had the house completely to myself for FOUR WHOLE HOURS before bedtime. That’s 240 minutes completely alone. I honestly didn’t know what to do with myself with all of this free time!

I know that there are things I SHOULD be doing and there are things that I WANT to be doing, but the couch and the television kept calling my name.  I simply couldn’t deny the pull that came from the living room.  I knew I would feel extremely unproductive (and a little guilty) if I took my position on said couch, but I also knew that I deserved those few precious hours.

It’s not something I get to enjoy very often.  As a matter of fact, around here it’s something very rare.  Every single holiday that I get off from work is also a school holiday.  The few vacation days I get I have to manipulate to cover the days that the kids get off from school that aren’t federal holidays.  And the days between Christmas and New Years that my company is closed?  Yes, the kids are out of school.  So these very few, very precious hours are meant to be savored.

So what did I do?  I sat on that couch, watched as many ‘chick flicks’ that I could cram into my evening, and I wrote this blog post.  All very important.  All very satisfying.

So, what does tomorrow hold?  It’s happy-back-to-work-day for me!!  But don’t worry, it’s a good thing.

~Jennifer