Taking Care of A Baby When You’re Sick
FROM HIM: Did you realise, that if you show even the tiniest amount of stoicism when you’re virtually dying of flu, you can completely convince your wife that you’re not really ill?
The wife’s motto is – if you’re not on a drip, you are a drip.
So obviously the sensible thing to do is hope for your own death in the night.
That will teach her.
She’d remember that the last thing she said was, “I want to hug you, but I don’t want to catch it.”
It would be worth it.
No wonder men have a reputation for exaggerating, they just want someone to acknowledge they’re actually ill.
I might start up a company where men who have the merest sniffle get to call up and describe their symptoms and every time we say “It’s probably more likely to be TB.”
I will call it the ‘Emergency Snotline’.
So how happy was I when I couldn’t stop shivering even though I was wearing two thirds of my wardrobe under the quilt?
You should have seen the smile on my face when steam started rising off my forehead to the point where even the wife had to go as far as to say, “Hmm… you do feel a bit clammy.”
I was so dizzy when I stood up that I had to walk with my face between my knees.
Ha… I’ve got flu and you know it! Take THAT doubting wife!
Oh crap; I’ve got flu and I have to look after Edgar.
Usually I relish the thought of spending the day with the boy, but when doing half a bowl of washing up makes you feel like you’ve done a half marathon, the prospect does not look half as good.
Because when you’re looking after a baby, you’re doing half a bowl of washing up practically all of the time.
The rest of the time you’re annoying yourself by talking to people in a baby voice who may or may not be babies, or gently swaying your hips when you’re not cradling anything, or talking with your missus in the 3rd person whilst trying to make the baby smile, or touching a saliva covered bit of food as if it means nothing to you, or really getting your face into your baby’s rectum to check it’s not still sore.
And I wasn’t looking forward to any of that like I usually do.
Edgar, bless his little cotton balls, has been close to perfect as always, but when you have flu and he does something as innocuous as removes your glasses, you just wish he could understand words, like: stop removing my glasses you little shit, I need them to see.
But then he gets ill.
Then you realise just how unimportant your illness is.
And whether or not your wife believes you’re ill (despite mounting evidence, because it would be tough to pass on an imaginary illness wouldn’t it?!) is meaningless.
Besides, that can be tactfully resurrected when the wife falls sick.
Wife: “I’m burning up.”
Me: “Hmm… You don’t feel hot.”
Wife: “Can you get me some drugs?”
Me: “Perhaps you’re just dehydrated.”
Wife: “I’ve lost my vision.”
Me: “Have you had a poo today? Could be constipation.”
I would take the illness back off him and do it all again so that saying ‘pink’ over and and over made him laugh (god knows why) instead of making his bottom lip quiver and then burst into confused tears.
I offer him my glasses, but he’s no longer interested, and I’d kill to see him rip them off my face and gleefully break them in half leaving me blind.
I try to make a deal with God by singing ‘Running Up That Hill’ by Kate Bush, but He refuses to let me swap places and continues to selfishly not exist.
The boy clings listlessly onto my neck and falls asleep, which is kind of nice because he finally wants to hug me a lot, but it’s kind of not nice because I keep having to stop myself from dialling the prime minister to tell him my only child is sick and ask what the hell is he doing about it?!
Then joy of joys he starts to show signs of being better.
Then he sleeps through the night again (yeah, sorry about that, he sleeps through the night now 7.30pm ’til 8am – don’t hate us).*
Then he eats his breakfast and I’m overjoyed.
I wish I could bottle this moment because I’m essentially happy about the status quo.
Everyone is well again.
Except the wife is complaining about being a bit achy.
But she’s probably faking it.
*At time of print he has spent at least an hour awake in the middle of the night for three nights running, so don’t hate us that much – a little bit more – a little less – that’s about right.