Kenny is sick. Not as in “dying from incurable disease,” but as in “if he doesn’t stop whining, I’m going to snuff him in his sleep, so if you don’t hear from me for the next few weeks, you should start looking in countries that don’t have extradition treaties with the U.S.”
I knew we were in trouble when he woke up a few days ago, moaning and coughing, and announced “I think I have H1N1.” “You do NOT have H1N1. You have a cold.” “I’m not kidding,” he hacked. “I think something is really wrong.” “You have a cold.” “But what is this stuff?” he asks, shoving a disgusting wad of Kleenex in front of my face to show me what he’s been hawking up since 3 a.m. “Well, without looking at it, because I quit inspecting snotty Kleenexes when Jake left home, I’d say it was, well…snot. You have a cold.” “I’m going to die,” he moaned. “That may be true,” I replied, “Especially if you ever ask me to look at your snot again.”
And so the day began. He moaned. A LOT. He sighed. Heavily and often. He sneezed. Oh dear God, he sneezed. MONTANA knows he sneezed because they could hear him, and probably got hit with the overspray. Tissues were piling up on the floor of every room faster than snowfall on the Andes (Did he think I was going to pick those up?? Not without a Hazmat suit. You blew on ’em, you pick ’em up.)
I repeatedly suggested he go to the doctor and get something (for the love of God, ANYTHING) to help with the symptoms. Nope. “Don’t need a doctor, and don’t need medication. Why don’t you just take care of me?” he sighed. Yes, I’ve read all the stupid articles that say men want their mommies when they’re sick, so I felt a need to go on record as saying I am NOT your mother. And furthermore, next week, when you’re feeling better and maybe a little sparky, I’m not sure “Mommy will make it all better” is going to be able to shift gears and suddenly be “Come to Mama, Big Guy.” Think about THAT next time you ask me to spoon feed you homemade soup.
I know there are people who insist that you “don’t really love someone” until you’ve been with them through puking flu symptoms and still think they’re beautiful. First of all, those people are idiots. Secondly, I can be wildly, passionately, and faithfully in love with you for decades, without ever seeing multicolored, rejected bodily fluids projectiling out of every possible orifice. If that’s some sort of cosmic relationship litmus test, I’m destined to die alone, but we’ll deal with at another time. Right now, I’m dealing with 6 feet of honking, hawking, sniffling, sneezing, moaning baby who apparently only has enough strength to eat. Standing in the kitchen over bacon, eggs, and multiple slices of toast, he looked over and sniffled, “You’re supposed to feed a cold. It helps your body heal.” Well, if that’s true, you should expect a spiritual healing in about 20 minutes, because there’s enough calories in that breakfast for 9 people.
By day 5, I was done. “Go to the doctor,” I demanded. “We both know I suck at this nursing thing, and believe it or not, there are people who ENJOY it. They’re called ‘nurses,’ and they pay lots of money to go to school for just this very reason. You can even pick the pretty one. I don’t care. Just GO.”
Two hours later, he came home with a prescription and a smile. “You’re right. She was nice. And pretty.” Good. I’ll go microwave you some canned soup. No. No kisses. Stand over there. Yep, over THERE. I know, sweetie. I love you too.