Lately I feel like the overstuffed mitten in that aptly titled children’s classic, The Mitten. My world, quite literally, is falling apart at the seams and I guess I’m whining because it feels good. Little else has proven effective thus far.
Of course, this is nothing new. I’ve always subscribed to the theory: When in doubt, whine it out. There’s just something about going on and on (in horrific detail) about personally troubling issues that contributes to coping—or maybe it’s the truckloads of pity I find especially therapeutic. Either way, I win. Whining also happens to deliver another benefit: It triggers within others an irresistible urge to vent in response (an enormously dysfunctional “pity party” of sorts).
You’re cordially invited.
Naturally, the venting process itself stirs the competitor within and causes a great number of individuals to spit out an I-can-top-that-train-wreck-of-an-experience-in-300-words-or-less! In short, I wind up feeling soooooooooooooooo much better after learning there are throngs of people out there WAY more miserable than I am. Thanks, in advance. I hope you share.
To spell it out… in refrigerator magnets, Seek and Destroy have been afflicted with one blasted illness after the other—FOREVER. Well, since the beginning of time anyway. It started with rotten colds (which each of the germ magnets managed to attract oh-so-handily) and progressed to a nasty ear infection—that positively refuses to go away. Then Seek, of course, felt left out and dreadfully bored with all that sneezing and coughing so she contracted strep throat to keep pace with her sister. Sprinkle an especially vile bout of pink eye into the mix (which they most generously shared with one another and God only knows who else) and that about sums up Sick-O-Central—with one exception: HIVES.
We discovered that Destroy is apparently allergic to just about every drug that contains any of the letters, A through Z. Not really, just the “cillin” family. Joy. And, as expected, we learned this key bit of information not during the week, during office hours or even where we reside. Nope. We became enlightened OVER THE WEEKEND while at a conference, AT NIGHT and roughly FOUR HOURS FROM HOME. Oh, happy day.
“What the hell are those spots?!” I grilled my husband who had spent all afternoon with the girls, swimming in the hotel pool, checking out the cool pond stocked with goldfish, and throwing rocks at the ducks. Yes, the man taught our dear children how to throw rocks at ducks. Modeled the behavior, even. That said, the ducks are okay. Really, they’re perfectly fine. Please don’t write to rail him. That’s my job.
“I don’t know. Looks like a rash,” he stated in a pitiful attempt to sound like a concerned medical professional. Damned quack. Stick to ducks already.
To make a long, boring story short and exciting, within about 38 seconds the hives grew to the size of watermelons and spread pretty much over her entire body—head to toe. For the record, they were red, and raised, and itchy and it was scary as hell for me to watch them multiply like some deranged polka-dotted plague. Thankfully, Benadryl saved the day and we didn’t have to tour Allegheny General Hospital that night, although for a time we seriously entertained the idea. At any rate, we’re home now and still up every night with one or both sicklings for one reason or another—which is painfully reminiscent of the sleep deprivation era we endured forever and a day.
With any luck, the new antibiotic will do the trick—minus the hives. Time will tell.
“Can I take a look at your belly? Yes, I know, I know, I’ve looked at it 427 times today, but I like it. It’s a nice belly and I am especially fond of the ‘innie’ you’re sporting there. No, really—I just need to see your belly. I won’t tickle you. I promise. Just humor me please, Hon.”
Of course, I am now ridiculously suspect of each and every itch, bump or red mark that appears on her skin. I’ve even tiptoed into her room at 3 a.m. with flashlight in hand to examine that belly—yet again. My husband thinks I’ve become obsessed. I simply continue to advise him that he should worry about the poor, defenseless ducks—not my middle-of-the-night traipsings.
Quite frankly, I’m sick to death of administering medicine too. I’ve been driven nearly berserk trying to keep track of who gets what, when—and my kitchen counter is starting to resemble a pharmacy. We’ve got gooey grape stuff, bubblegum-flavored chewables, terrific tasting cherry liquid, a nasal spray and eye drops that promise to end that oh-so-wonderful eyelash super-gluing phenomenon nearly instantaneously. Good thing. I’ve grown to loathe the unsticking process each morning.
Hello, Misery…your company is most definitely here.
Planet Mom: It’s where I live (answering the door).
Copyright 2005 Melinda L. Wentzel