Sunday, July 20, 2014

Lifestyles of the Sick and Obscure

I was sick a couple days ago.

Not terribly, horribly sick, so don't be feeling too sorry for me (unless you really really want to- I mean, I won't say no to a few extra pity vibes thrown my way; I'll save them up for the next time I really am disgustingly sick and our children care not the tiniest iota); it was just a nasty cold.  The kind of thing a little extra rest, a bit more fluids will heal more than any medicine.  (Never mind that I try and think that about most illnesses, simply because I HATE taking medicine and will do just about anything to get out of taking it, excepting, of course, my inhalers, Chuck and Mother Mary.  The orange inhaler is Chuck- because he looks like a Chuck, obviously- and the rest are Mother Mary, because when I find myself in times of trouble, Mother Mary comes to me and gives me something even better than words of wisdom- lovely, life-giving albuterol.)

I have always thought of myself as pretty low-maintenance, even, dare I say it, stoic, when it comes to being sick, because I don't require much help when feeling poorly.  I do not want someone hovering, I do not want people crooning and touching and really even being there at all.  I want to be alone, which somehow always made me feel strong and superior, until, that is, a couple nights ago when I realized just how many props I need to surround myself with in my aloneness when I have nothing worse than a piddling cold.

Let's start with our base layer of pampered malingering-wear:

My favorite blankets.  The brown one is incredibly warm, the lettered blanket has the first lines of classic works of fiction.  Because who isn't comforted by Beowulf when they're under the weather?

Next, and arguably the most important:

A rice pack which must be heated for between one minute and one minute thirty seconds in the microwave; less than that and it loses its heat too quickly, more and it's too scorching to put against my spoiled little pelt.  A heated rice pack mends everything from a sore back to a headache to cold toes to a foul mood.  They're so magical and perfect I bet there's one in the foot of every bed in Hogwarts castle.  

Just as important:

Now.  I am, in general, not a brand snob.  I can make do with all kinds of generic brands for all kinds of things, from food to clothing to whatever, but when it comes to my nose, it would appear that I am a big fat baby, as I must have Puffs with lotion IF you don't mind.  

The obvious ingredient:

A book, BUT- it mustn't be anything too heavy or taxing for my feeble febrile brain.  This favorite author fits the bill perfectly.  Congratulations, Ms. L'Engle, for this highly dubious honor.

Water WITH ICE if you please, because I'm an American, for cryin' out loud.  This is one where I've actually gotten better as I've gotten older; as a child I would only drink water out of the bathroom faucet when sick because it tasted better and colder.  I did not ever demand this of my mother, of course, because I always wanted to survive my illnesses.

And all this had to be collected on the couch so that I could sleep with my poor little head (actually, my head is rather large, thank you so much, mother) elevated, and so that I wouldn't wake Derek every time I blew my nose, which was only once every five minutes or so all night long, jeez, Derek, and I am of the belief that if I don't achieve a loud noise when blowing my nose I'm not really getting everything out, and because I'm an eldest child I'm hard-wired for over-achievement, if only when emptying facial orifices.


  1. I hope you fell ALL better soon. You must be feeling a little bit better to be able to take photos. When you have a cold, generic tissues are like sandpaper. I agree with you on everything except the nose-blowing noise. My husband makes enough nose-blowing noise for 5 people, so I am not competitive in that arena.

  2. Summer colds seem so unfair. Why should we have to miss any summer days? Also, I see my husband has something in common with the CHM's husband :-)

    Kleenex with lotion are an absolute MUST with a cold. Thank goodness someone invented that!

    I hope you are feeling better.


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