A cold's impact on my life

I thought my days of going without a shower for a few days was over when both of my children were in elementary school.

I was wrong.

Recently, I rediscovered this feeling when my two sons and I got terrible colds.

For my youngest son, John, it didn’t start as a cold, but something else. He had a fever, was tired, extremely needy, dizzy and weak. The poor thing. It makes me sad when he is like that. Almost every hour for two days, I changed his ice pack for his head upon request and catered to his every need. This meant both of us sleeping on the couches in the living room. He took one and I the other.

After one night of this and a painful neck ache the next day. I decided I wasn’t going to sleep on the coach another night. His fever had broken, but he still wasn’t feeling well. I wound up sleeping in his bed with him all night. It just made things easier.

The next day, I was able to make it back to my own bed. Yay! However, I didn’t get a good night’s sleep. I was continually interrupted by John needing something to sooth his cold.

He had a horrible cough and complained of a sore throat. I rubbed Vicks VapoRub on his chest, made him gargle with salt water, gave him some cold medicine and a cough drop to suck on until he got too sleepy. This happened over a weekend, so it wasn’t such a big deal not getting a shower.

By this time however, I was run down, had the cold myself and felt horrible. I also noticed my oldest son also had the cold. Trying to take care of all three of us while feeling miserable really took its toll on me.

After the weekend, it took almost every effort to get them bathed and ready for school on a Monday morning and by the time I got them ready, I barely had time to get dressed, slap some makeup on my face, run a comb through my hair and run out the door.

As I am recalling this now, I’m not even sure if I combed my hair, but no one said anything at work, so I guess I must have.

I thought those days were over. I really did. I can recall how when my children were babies and I nursed them, it seemed like I would go days without a shower because they needed me all the time: as most babies do.

After I got home from work and made sure my children got off of the bus safely and had everything they needed, I took a long, hot, shower. It was nice.

What I learned is no one at work seemed to notice and were more concerned with how I was feeling because I had dark circles under my eyes, had the most horrible cough and my voice was almost unrecognizable.

I am not one who showers every day in the winter anyway, because my skin gets too dry. Three days is too long when you’re not camping I’ve discovered.


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