Amblin’ Alameda: It’s Going Around

Amblin’ Alameda: It’s Going Around

Morton Chalfy

For the past two weeks I’ve been “nursing” my sweetie through her battle with a stubborn cold that occasions fits of deep coughing, weepy eyes, general loss of appetite and a feeling of malaise. It had hit our little family hard in her son-in-law, less hard in her grandchild and very hard in her. Not fun. We managed together to get everything done that absolutely had to be done and became adept at not doing the unnecessary.

For the past several days she seemed to be on the verge of being totally cured. Shots of energy coursed through her and when they did she put them to good use, writing her column for Psychology Today (online), seeing and not touching or breathing on a client and fixing the odd light repast. We were even able to spend some time with friends (taking the proper precautions) but it did wear her out.

During this while I’ve been glad that I apparently had side-stepped the virus and was able to do the chores that keep life going while she fought the good fight. We even kept an appointment with her primary doctor who had dealt with the same illness a month ago and who informed her, unfortunately, that the cough could persist for six weeks. I didn’t feel superior since it was a matter of luck that she was ill and I wasn’t, but I didn’t make any plans, either.

At 6:21 a.m. Thursday morning I awoke coughing severely enough to climb out of bed and leave the room so as not to wake her. She had spent much time in her easy chair under a comforter since she coughed less when sitting upright than when lying in bed, and I thankfully took her place and pulled up the comforter. It worked. I slept for the next two hours and then felt good enough to make breakfast, which took almost all my energy.

It is always really interesting to me how illness focuses one’s attention. Fortunately I had nothing I needed desperately to do, because if I had I might not have been able to. A portion of my mind is keyed to how I’m feeling and how I can suppress the coughs. They are beginning to hurt my abdomen now, especially if I’m lying down. The world is a wonderful place when you are well, but the world shrinks to the size of your skin when you are ill.

I’m being forced to take it easy, to drink lots of liquids and to visit the bathroom more often than I like. My eyes are burning a little and I have a slight headache and the prospect of two weeks or more of this is daunting. Oh well, there are much worse ailments going around, and I might get a lot of reading and even some writing done.

Please excuse me now, I have to run.