It’s no secret that we have been sick in this house as of late. In the last month there has been a shingles outbreak, an encounter with poison ivy, an ear infection and now my son is on his third bout of chicken pox. Yes, that’s right….his THIRD bout. I am less than excited about this for many reasons. I do not appreciate that my child has to go through all of this yet again, but I have to say that he is a trooper. He doesn’t scratch a lot and while he has his whiny moments, overall, he is in good spirits and super duper lovey. (It makes me sad that he has to be sick to give me my snuggle fill, but I will take it where I can get it)
This got me to thinking….when is it that men become such huge babies when they are sick? I mean, seriously? We all have that one (probably more) man in our lives who is so incredibly pathetic about having to deal with an illness. The first one I can recall in my life was my father. HUGE BABY! He would lay on the couch and groan and pout. I learned early on that it was ridiculous.
Later, I got married and that man took it to a whole new level. He used to ask me to sit and rub his head until he fell asleep. He would cry…yes…cry…because his nose was stuffed up. We went to the ER one night because of a UTI, which while painful is manageable, especially when we went to the ER at midnight and his Dr.’s office opened at 8am.
We also had a cat who (because “it would suck if someone chopped off MY manhood”…wise words of the ex-husband) got very territorial one night. I had friends that came over and they brought their new baby. I was holding the baby and I could see the fire in the cat’s eyes. I asked my husband to pick him up and chill him out. So, instead of moving slowly, he swooped in to pick him up and the cat went INSANE and bit and scratched the ever living crap out of hubster’s arm. I clearly remember seeing the cat hanging from his wrist, using only it’s teeth. After the insanity had stopped and I had a chance to tend to my husband’s arm, I got him cleaned up and cleaned the wounds. We wrapped it and kept a close eye on it. (Please do not think I am making light of the situation. It was scary and had the husband cried, I would have totally understood…but he took it like a man and I was impressed)
Life was good until one day he was listening to the radio and Sweaty Teddy started belting out his biggest hit…”Cat Scratch Fever”. After that, it was on. For YEARS the ex swore that he had Cat Scratch Fever because of the run in with the cat and if he thought about it too long he would start with fake symptoms.
Then, one day, he got chicken pox (Apparently caring for those with the pox is my calling in life) and OH MY GOD!!! Just shoot me! He whined and cried and whimpered about every little thing. At the time, we had no TV in our bedroom and he found this to be unacceptable so one night during his epic pox battle, he sniffled and pouted about not being able to see tv in bed. It was insanely late at night…like 2 or 3am…and I asked him what he wanted me to do about (HUGE! MISTAKE!!). His response was “Well, will you move the bed into the family room?”
MOVE THE BED!!! MOVE! THE! BED!!!!
I don’t know what is more ridiculous…the fact that he had the balls to ask me to do it or the fact that I DID IT!
Fast forward 10 years, 1 divorce and a rekindling of a romance with my high school sweetheart.
He had a chronic illness that made him feel like he had the flue 24/7. He took it in stride and I was impressed. I thought that maybe, just maybe I had found a man…a real man…the kind that doesn’t cry because of a paper cut. Then, allergy season hit. Lord have mercy! You would think he was John Travolta in the Boy in the Plastic Bubble.
I get it. Allergies suck….chicken pox are evil…UTI’s are hellish and Cat Scratch Fever?? Well, there are just no words. But ya know what…women (for the most part) don’t become ridiculous piles of gelatinous self pity. So, I ask you…when do men go from being Super Duper Party Troopers when they are sick to being previously mentioned blobs of whine?
I think I know the answer. I think that every man starts out as a tough guy. I think that they all learn, throughout childhood, that they can handle most any illness that comes their way. Life is good and while they still want a mom hug and some of her sickness expertise, they do not cling like day old boogers on the wall.
Years pass and suddenly they meet “that” girl. The one that is bound to be their first long term relationship. The one who accepts their oddities and even embraces them. The one that makes their world a much better place…THE ONE THAT CODDLES THEM WHEN THEY ARE SICK! Most of us women have been there. We are nurturers. The majority of us show our love by caring for others in some fashion and when we are teenagers, we seize the day and throw all of our tendencies at our man when he is sick.
THIS, ladies, is when it happens. They realize that their illness evokes pity from their lady and once they realize how good they have it with that first one, they expect the rest of us to do it…every. single. time!
So, can we change the evolution of womankind? Probably not…so here is my hope. I hope that one day, after I am no longer cool enough, that my son finds that perfect woman. I hope that she is everything he ever wanted…and I hope that when he is sick, she tells him to suck it up and make his own damn soup! This is the girl that I will approve of him marrying!