Man, have I been sick! This is day 13 of the witch of all vicious viruses. It’s like the worst morning sickness I ever had, or the time I drank 5 margaritas in a row. Except those toilet-hugging episodes only lasted a short time, and this seemed to have moved in to stay. The doctor’s office didn’t exactly tell me not to darken their door and spread it around, but they strongly encouraged me to stay in bed, drink lots of fluids, and tough it out. So I have slept like a hibernating bear, done a lot of moaning and groaning, and been profoundly grateful for good friends.
Suzanne and Bob were at my door within 20 minutes of my call for help, bringing Tylenol, hot water bottles, Sprites, saltines, and popsicles. Veterans of the bug, they assured me that I only felt as if I were dying, and they went way beyond what anybody has the right to expect from other people. Way beyond. Another friend, Jane, drove around looking for special foods I might be able to eat, stocking my refrigerator with enough jello to float the entire neighborhood. Linda called every day to see if I needed anything, and went to church and prayed for me. When the temperature dipped below freezing, Michael, who hates cold air more than anything in the world, came and shivered while he covered tender plants in my yard with sheets. Kim ran errands for me, and Edith gave up her own time with a quantum healer and asked her to direct the computerized energy to me instead. (By the way, the distance energy healing sort of lifted a mental fog I’d been in, and when I’m well I’m going to go see the practitioner for some more sessions.)
At one of my lowest points, when I dissolved into helpless, frustrated, angry sobs, Bob said, “This is how we learn humility.” He was right. This virus has imparted enough humility to last the rest of my life. But every problem comes with a gift in its hands, and the gift has been the outpouring of love and friendship. In time, all the pain and various indignities will fade from memory like childbirth, but the gift of friendship will stay with me forever. So as bad as it has been, and while I sure as heck never want it again, I’m thankful for this awful bug.