Monday, October 01, 2007


I lay on the bathroom floor, fingers curled into claws, totally immobilized. I could barely breathe. I couldn’t feel my legs, but I could feel the bile rising in my throat.

“This is Karma in action,” I thought to myself.

The Tuesday before, SuperHubby dragged himself home from work at 10:30 p.m., complaining of dizziness, nausea and chills. He climbed into bed and proceeded to toss and turn and keep me awake until 1 a.m.

I tried -I really tried - to be solicitous. I got him a hot pack to warm his freezing hands. I found Advil to calm the fever he didn’t have. I fetched medicine to settle his stomach.

I brushed my fingers through his hair and rubbed his back, muttering “It’s going to be ok; it’s going to be ok.”

But what it sounded like was: “Good Lord. You are a grown man. This is the stomach flu and you don’t even have a fever. Suck it up.”

I was irritated and tired, and as his illness lingered into Wednesday and Thursday, I probably didn’t give him the loving kindness he deserved. When he made it out of bed and downstairs, he would immediately lie on the couch as though the trip had cost him every ounce of energy he possessed.

I scowled.

Four solid days of single-parenthood weren’t setting well with me.

On Friday, SuperHubby was feeling better, but still too drained to make it to work, or to help much with the boys. Instead, he headed to the doctor to try to figure out what was wrong with him.

I was feeling ok, until about four in the afternoon, when Friday’s lunch came rushing back. I thought it was so odd, because the only I get sick with a high fever or when pregnant. I had no fever, and I knew I wasn’t pregnant.

I called SuperHubby and asked him to pick up some ginger ale or Gatorade on his way home from the doctor's office. He said he was too tired. I figured I could live without it, and let it drop. But I was feeling woozy, and ticked that not only was he sick, now he wasn't even helping me out.

I scowled some more, then threw up.

By seven, I knew I wasn't going to make it without some Gatorade. I called a neighbor, and begged her to run to the store for me. She said she would, after dinner. But by eight, she still hadn't arrived, and I was shaking. SuperHubby was putting Tom to bed. I had Seth, but I was shaking so hard I was afraid to pick him up.

By nine, I had collapsed on the bathroom floor, immobile and terrified. SuperHubby couldn't drive me to the hospital, so he called 911.

The EMTs had a bit of trouble maneuvering me past the pack-n-play, the trendy Fisher Price Rainforest Swing, and the exersaucer. They kept telling me to "breathe slower" and looked surprised and vaguely disgusted when I vomited bile all over the floor. I wondered why they were in this profession.

As the EMTs wheeled me out the front door and into the ambulance, Drunk Judy from across the street came over to see how I was doing. "You ok?" she slurred, not unkindly. I was thankful that I couldn't speak, so I didn't have to say, "No, I'm fine. I volunteer to do this to help train the medics. It's really a fun way to spend a Friday night! Here's your sign."

*It's been a little over two weeks since the horrible, awful, very bad stomach flu hit our house. We are all fine and completely recovered. In the process we managed to spread the joy to one neighbor, both of SuperHubby's parents and our wonderful, incredible babysitter. They've all recovered, too.*


Jen Rouse said...

Holy cow! I confess I'm often not very solicitous when my husband is sick either. So far karma hasn't come back to get me, but your story just may force me to change my not-so-nice bedside manner.

Glad you're feeling better!

Jess said...

Yikes. That sounds dreadful. I'm so glad everyone's feeling better!

mopsy said...

Sheesh, Goslyn. Glad you are better. What a nightmare.

Has this post been up for very long? Because I just checked your blog and everything after the poem wasn't here!?