Now that my husband is safely out of the Valley of the Shadow of Death, I feel that it is safe to share of my journey by his side. It is commonly known that the average man reverts back to infancy when he feels a case of the sniffles coming on. He becomes unable to complete simple tasks, like taking himself to the bathroom or pouring himself a glass of juice.
My husband is the kind of man that if given warning of the impending disease, he would probably bust out the craft supplies and make a sign to drape across his prone form that proclaimed “The End is Near” instead of just laying on the couch all day whining and bemoaning the approaching doom. Every time the kids get sick I find myself begging God to let the illness pass by my husband.
This time Daddy got sick first and there was no warning. The poor soul awoke to his alarm clock and declared that he had not slept for two seconds together the entire night and that he felt positively horrible. This being only his third day on a new job he decided that there was nothing for it but to drag his weary body from the comfort of his covers and get ready for work. With very great effort he managed to dress himself and be out of the door within the minute his ride called to say he was parked out front.
Less than three hours later his ride was back out front to drop off my stomach virus stricken husband. Coming through the door, he plowed his way through us to dive onto the couch and issue the decree that he was very, very sick and delirious, and that anyone who touched, climbed on, or otherwise bothered him would be sentenced to death.
Somewhere between the front door and the couch the small amount of pity that I had been able to accumulate had vanished, and the feeble man was fated to an afternoon of being cared for by a cranky nurse.
His condition quickly deteriorated from a typical stomach virus to something called a “nerve virus.” I had never encountered this type of sickness before, but I can tell you from experience that one of the symptoms that the inflicted claims to have is paralysis of the legs. There seems to be a momentary reprieve that enables the patient to arise if the doorbell rings while the nurse is upstairs with the children.
By the early afternoon the general whininess and level of complaint had increased in pitch to match the new self-diagnoses of “ameobic dysentery” in conjunction with a “very high fever” of 100.5 degrees Fahrenheit. I was surprised when only Tylenol was requested instead of a high dosage of morphine.
Shortly after this I was struck with amnesia, due to the stress of it all, and remember very little of the remaining period of illness. I can say for sure that I was not thrown up upon like I was only a few days later, nor was I required to do any nasty cleaning up. I did have to suffer, along with the rest of the household, through some unidentifiable odors however. My husband was quick to reassure me that the stench was his decomposing body tissue, and that I should for the sake of heaven take pity on him, during this, his final hour.
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