Like the cliche of Murphy's Law, Sophie got sick while I was in Washington, D.C. last week, literally for the first time this school year. She's uncommonly healthy (knock on wood) despite the hundreds of seizures, and I attribute that to good diet, osteopathy and a pretty serious regimen of Chinese herbs, homeopathy and nutritional supplements. I know -- Y A W N. I think that the seventeen years of providing those "alternative" things has supported her general health, giving her far more potential than was predicted. Both boys were sick, too, even while we were away, and now I've come down with a sore throat, aches and pains and the beginnings of a cold. The Husband has been hacking away with a cough and cold for what seems like weeks.
Unlike Sophie, though, both boys, The Husband and I, pretend that we're not sick and go about our days as usual, for the most part. Henry powers through his cold, sniffing until I tell him to blow your nose; Oliver is a grump in the grandest of traditions, so much so that my compassion largely disappears and I literally grit my teeth around him. The Husband leaves for The Mistress despite being at death's door, such are her charms and needs. I, like millions of mothers before and with me, periodically lie on my back on my bed and stare up at the ceiling but otherwise carry on because who has time to be sick?
It struck me this morning as I tucked her back into bed after breakfast where she promptly closed her eyes, curled up and went back to sleep, that she does exactly what one is supposed to do when you're sick. She rests. And, yes, this is probably just an animal instinct, but it's a damn smart one, one that we should all emulate.