Grant Me Patience

And the ability to deal gently with a sick child when she wakes me up for the fourth time, two nights in a row. She's got a wretchedly sore throat and a fever and has been throwing up intermittently, which I can handle with kindness and sympathy during the day, and the first 2 or 3 times I'm awakened from a deep sleep. The fourth time, I'm afraid I was a little snarky last night. I gave up on a nap this afternoon after the third time she woke me.

She's very pitiful, and pitiable, but she's also given to excessive histrionics, something with which I do not deal well. Her father was the same - everyone within a hundred yards knew when he was sick. He'd moan and wail, plaintively demanding to know when it would be over.

When I'm sick, I retreat. Silent and pale, I like to suffer alone. As a child, when I had to throw up during the night, I'd sneak down 2 flights of stairs to use the bathroom in the far corner of the basement so I wouldn't wake my mother. And I like drugs, whatever it takes to mask the symptoms. Years of violent migraines taught me the virtues of modern medicine.

My ex refused to take any kind of medication ("Men don't take drugs"), and expected to be waited on hand and foot until fully recovered. Which I would have done, cheerfully and supportively, if only he had shut up once in a while. But after a couple of hours of listening to him whooping and whining, my overwhelming impulse was to hit him with a brick. And I'm afraid I'm not as tender as I could be when she starts weeping and wailing because she feels like throwing up. At least she chokes down Tylenol on command. And she really is pretty pathetic right now. But I'm not sure how well I'll react after a second night of broken sleep.

I'll do my best. I just hope it's enough.