My wife is sick.
Nothing too terrible, mind you. Just a cough. However, this cough seems to originate somewhere deep within her intestine and gather momentum as it thrashes its way up the esophagus and explodes with all its fury through her teeth. Then she starts over. At 3 am.
“Gross,” I say, trying to console her.
“Leave me alone,” she replies. (The one thing that will never change in our marriage is our loving banter.) The problem is that I can’t leave her alone. This is an issue because she doesn’t trust my motives—probably from years of dealing with guys who are shallower than me.
Every husband in the world knows what I’m talking about. We want our wives to get better because it is simply no fun going solo. Even if you have enough kids to more than make up for the fact that your spouse is missing, it’s just not the same. And we can’t express that to our wives—we can’t show any sympathy or concern--without the exact same response every time.
Me: “How are you feeling, honey?”
My Wife: “Hmph.”
Me: “Honey? Are you okay? Can I get you anything?”
My Wife: “I’m fine. I need to rest. Leave me alone.”
Me: “Okay. Let me know how I can help you get better.”
My Wife (with a HUGE terminal eye roll): “Puh-leeze! I’m sure you’ll survive without me for a few days.”
Me: “What? I only want…”
My Wife: “Oh, I know what you want and I’m telling you that you will survive for a few days.”
I think she gets paranoid when her lungs rattle…
This illustrates one of the major ways that guys and wives differ. When a wife falls ill, she actually doesn’t want her husband to touch her AT ALL. I know this is hard to believe, but from my years of research it appears to be true. Sadly, it means that she will stay ill for a long time, possibly even 48 hours.
Conversely, if a guy ever feels under the weather, he KNOWS how to get better immediately: get all the loving attention he can. We try to communicate this truth in all earnestness but are usually rejected on the spot. This is why we remain at death’s door, sometimes for weeks on end.
I don’t understand why she isn’t more careful about her health. Since I know the available treatments are not as effective as they could be, I will do anything to avoid being sick. I will eat anything if it has some sort of secret side effect of helping me to stay snot-free.
Garlic boosts your immune system? I’ll eat a clove a day.
Hot peppers kill a cold? Sign me up for a mouthful.
I will eat something so disgusting that I’ll get sick to avoid getting sick. Thankfully, no one has pranked me yet. (i.e. “New Research Reveals That Eating A Cow’s Tongue Will Guarantee A Sickness-Free Winter!”)
Now that I think of it, if she’s not going to let me nurse her back to health with some good old fashioned TLC, maybe I need to introduce my wife to some of these alternative remedies as well.
I wonder how she feels about pickled cow tongue....