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Written while sporting a fever

I am writing this with a fever. It’s not the first time I’ve written something while on fire, harboring nasty germs, feeling wretched. Tonight was unusual because my husband had to go to a meeting. After spending the day in bed, I maneuvered achy joints and muscles out of my bedroom and down the stairs to the children.

The big kids were squabbling and shoving each other on the couch as they watched Netflix. I reminded them I did not feel well and was counting on their help and good behavior. Situations where mom is sick demonstrate, on a small scale, how prepared everyone is to pitch in and fly solo, at least for a short time. I spent the night alternately impressed and fuming. If fevers shot up and down based on mood, we would have had fried eggs and ice cream for dinner instead of chili dogs prepared by Ryley.

He cooked dinner. It wasn’t complicated. All he had to do was microwave hot dogs and heat chili. He plated everyone’s food. They chopped a hot dog into small bits for Teddy. It wasn’t the most nutritious dinner, but the kids ate and drank milk and from my station on the couch with my blankie, I heard them pray.

They chattered and ate. Teddy shouted the word “cheese” over and over. I was told one of the kids sliced cheddar for him. I thought about hauling my illness-battered bones up, but I felt like maybe I’d be intruding on their sense of independence and adventure. They are capable children and they care for each other, even though I had to remind them more than once to knock off the fighting as the night wore on. Please. Please. Please. They’d stop and return to loading the dishwasher or doing homework

Sam typed two paragraphs and read them aloud to me. They were clever. Then he checked Tommy’s math homework. Aidan gave Beatrix her bath. I could hear them laughing upstairs. Then she put pajamas on Archie. They made their lunches. We even sneaked in an episode of “Wheel Of Fortune.”

I always like watching game shows when I’m sick. I think they take me back to childhood when I’d stay home from school. My mom would put me on the couch, sometimes with the special red bucket with an inch of water in the bottom—just in case. I’d watch game shows and soap operas and I’d hear my mom busy in the kitchen, cooking food, running the bath, praying for me.

(I wrote this last night after my husband got home from his meeting. My eyelids were burning, I was exhausted, miserable, but somehow, I was overcome by a feeling of great blessing. Had to share and now it’s part of Just Write, Heather’s weekly round-up of free-writing).

7 comments to Written while sporting a fever

  • Oh, at my Mommal & Poppal’s house I’d stay home sick (a lot) and watch ANY game show that would come on. The Price is Right, Press Your Luck, and Name That Tune were my VERY favorites. Oh and Card Sharks.

    Hope you feel better.


  • Yes, this. when our littles pull together and are just plain so very GOOD. It’s amazing, isn’t it?

    (I hope that you feel better. So sorry that you were sick!)

  • So relate to this. I’m sorry you are unwell. Kids just being kids, right? Sometimes wonderful and amazing and then sometimes imperfect and frustrating, like all of us.

  • Mom

    From your sick couch you were able to witness your children being capable, responsible, happy, prayerful, helpful and normal (squabbles). It is a blessing to see that they have learned a lot from their parents. Get well soon,my dear. I still worry and pray when I know you aren’t well.

  • I’m sitting here in my bed all sick and stuff. So we can be kindred sick mothers right now. heh.
    But I hope you’re actually better. You write very very well when you are on fire.
    I love the little doses of grace you were fed through the evening through your kids.

  • I forgot to say that my sick days as a kid included a bucket with water in the bottom too. And Days of Ours Lives and I loved LOVED 10,000 dollar pyramid and Press Your Luck and Price Is Right (PLINKO)

    The End.

  • Amy

    My parents didn’t let me watch much TV, except when I was sick. I loved being able to lay on the sofa all day and watch as much as I wanted. My favorites were always The Price is Right and Name That Tune.

    Hope you are feeling better.

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