[100 Things] Being Sick

15 May

One of my subcategories of 100 Things About Being Single is the Bad Things. Being sick is possibly in the top three of all bad things about being single. (I’ll get to the other two, so stay tuned.)

I remember when I was a kid and got sick, my mom would make me Jello-water to rehydrate me, give me lukewarm Sprite or 7-Up, read out loud to me, and generally make me feel better. In fact, there was one truly heinous illness (my doctor diagnosed me over the phone as having encephalitis, but who knows what it really was besides terrifying periods of fever and delirium and truly skull-splitting headaches) that I only remember as a blur of being buried in pink blankets (this was back when we still sweated out fevers) and Mom’s voice reading Miss Bianca by Marjory Sharp.

As a single adult, when I’m sick, my cats may curl up with me to keep me company as I lie in misery on the couch. Or they may be running in circles and meowing in complaint that I haven’t scooped the litter today. I don’t have anyone brewing me ginger tea to keep me from barfing, or making chicken soup, or even bringing me medicine. And the only person reading aloud to me is the guy who narrates The Lord of the Rings audiobook.

Of course, maybe married people don’t have caretakers when they’re sick, either. I know my mom just wants to be left alone if she doesn’t feel well, but Dad seems to be very considerate about brewing her tea and feeding himself on freezer pizzas, if nothing else.

Do any married people want to weigh in? Am I missing out on a better sickness experience? Or is everyone alone when they’re sick?

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4 Responses to “[100 Things] Being Sick”

  1. Andrea May 27, 2012 at 3:42 pm #

    I don’t think you’re really missing out, its just a different experience. This year has seriously tested our ‘in sickness and in health’ vow. I’ve had the flu + bad asthma and it was helpful to have my sweetie remind me to stay on top of meds and bring me tea. That said she is supporting us and has to work really long days. I’m on my own most of the time and I feel awful knowing I keep her up at night when she has a 14 hour day to wake up to.

    Then there’s the flip side. She has an auto-immune disorder with symptoms that aren’t super obvious – even to her some times. I can tell though, and she has a hard time letting me take care of her before things get bad. I know that part of it is that she doesn’t want to admit she’s sick, the other part is that she feels a bit guilty about my having to take care of her when we are both so busy – its difficult to deal with that as the care taker.
    We like being taken care of, but when you care about your care taker, its seems to be difficult to let yourself be taken care of.

    • SWC May 29, 2012 at 12:09 am #

      I hope you’re both feeling healthy these days! I have to say, I really admire people who honor that “in sickness and health” vow. I’m whiny and crabby as all get-out when I’m sick, so it’s probably good no one has to put up with me!

      Your perspective is really interesting. I hadn’t thought about how difficult it might be to have someone else taking care of you.

      • Andrea May 31, 2012 at 3:47 pm #

        We’re both a lot better, thank you! Your post struck up an interesting discussion with the missus in which we both owned up to being whiny and pathetic when we’re sick and reflected on both of us being ill at the same time… Needless to say the company is nice but thats about it 🙂

        • SWC June 4, 2012 at 2:30 am #

          Glad I could spark some conversation! And I’m very glad to hear you’re both feeling better. 🙂

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