As told from the not-at-all biased perspective of the poor, put-upon-yet-saintly wife.
Stage 1: Oh, look, a mancold.
I admit it. I had pretty much zero sympathy when My Guy said he felt crummy. I am a warrior queen and never get sick. And he’s refused to see an allergist for the allergies that have made him miserable for years, so, uh, whatever.
Stage 2: Hmm. He’s actually pretty sick.
There was no denying. He was miserable. This wasn’t allergies. This was a big, bad cold. So big and bad that I got up in the middle of the night to move to the guest room because the mucusy snoring was … uh, intense. I felt guilty for my previous indifference and plied My Guy with meat-based meals created with my loving, vegetarian hands.
Stage 3: Oh, no he did not.
I felt rage. White, hot rage. Because I determined that my darling husband had used my pillow. The pillow that I sleep on. The pillow where I rest my face. He had defiled my sacred space by breathing and coughing and gooing on my pillow … and then not telling me. And letting me use said pillow. I moved into the guest room permanently.
Stage 4: Everything hurts and I’m dying.
It came like a wave one bright Thursday morning. One moment I was working at my desk like a normal, productive member of society. The next, I had aches running throughout my arms and legs and I was sneezing my head off.
Stage 5: Don’t look at me.
I retreated from the world and my marriage. I gathered my off-brand Robitussin (conveniently named TUSSIN!), my Kleenex, my menthol cough drops, and my dogs in the guest room. My Guy would come visit and lay down next to me. He apologized. I told him to stay away from my pillow. He retreated.
Stage 6: Why am I still actively dying?
My Guy got The Sickening worse than I did, but mine seemed to hold on longer. It required Canada Dry Ginger Ale and Lay’s Barbecue Potato Chips. It would accept no substitutes. My Guy and I were both still exhausted all the time.
|We felt like this. But way less adorable. And with more mucus.
Stage 7: Perhaps, one day, we will be together.
After what could have been four days or seven years because my feverish mind just can’t tell, I moved back into the bedroom I share with my husband. We eyed each other wearily but were thankful for the return to normalcy. We hugged apprehensively but, like nervous 14-year-olds at a junior high dance, we were too nervous to kiss. Getting up the nerve for actual lip-to-lip contact could take years.