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in which I get knocked down

Sickness saps my energy, both physical and mental. It's surprising, really, how seldom I get sick, since I work in a petri dish. When I do get sick it lays me low and happenings that I might normally take in stride just completely knock me down.

Last week I was diagnosed with an embarrassing viral infection, the symptoms of which on their own couldn't possibly have dragged me this deep down: sores in my mouth and throat that blistered and peeled and made every mouthful feel and taste like shredded pennies; an itchy rash around my mouth and nose and on my chest. Compounding that: knees that felt packed in hot wax, the backs of my eyeballs aflame. No fever, so no H1N1. Negative strep. Malaise.

But I soldiered (martyred?) through most of the week at work, because I could, and some of the other teachers had to stay at home with their diverticulitis and kidney stones. On Thursday night my laptop died. On Friday night I felt I could deal with my weekend obligations. DH went out of town and that left only me for Jack to drag to his school's Fall Carnival, which turned into an all-evening affair. I hadn't been sick when I volunteered for an 8:30 to 9:00 pm slot turning older kids away from the Mini Midway. By that time all the little kids had gone anyway, so my volunteering wasn't necessary. We went home, where Jack's sugar high kept him from minding me very well during Bedtime Routine.

Before bed, our nighttime Kitty Check came up one short. Kismet was accounted for, but Moxie was missing. We went out and called her, shook the Whisker Lickin's container, and concluded she'd come home by morning. She's been out overnight twice before. No biggie.

Because DH was gone Cassie felt it necessary to bark at any little noise that roused her. My sleep was broken by frequent shushings and trips to the family room screen door to see if Moxie had come home. The sun rose on Saturday morning. Still no Moxie.

Jack spent all day Saturday playing with the neighbors while I stayed at home and tried to sleep, tried to craft, tried to watch a movie, but all the while trying to find Moxie.

Heavy heart, hot-wax knees, flaming eyeballs, and sandpaper throat. Still I did my best to fulfill other obligations, even when my efforts were stymied. My key won't open the door to the church for Parish Fun Night? Fine. We'll have Fun Night in the preschool, where my key does work. Sunday morning handbell rehearsal, no problem. Actual performance? My mallet rolls off the table and that fortifying bass beat I'm supposed to keep up misses three measures.

And Moxie is still gone.

At home, after church, I can't pull it together. Everything in my body hurts. I can't stop crying. My sister agrees to keep Jack all day. I wait again in Urgent Care, to be seen by Dr. Lick, possibly the most inept medical practitioner in Tucson. Mom makes an emergency visit to take care of me.

I sleep. As much as I can, aided or unaided. When I wake I check for my kitty at the screen door but she doesn't come home. Sleep is easing my physical symptoms and I feel my body is on the mend, but my heart will ache for some time to come.

Come home, Moxie. We miss you.


anita said…
I'm so sorry . . . Jane was missing for four days last month, but then showed up thin and hungry. We think she ate something that made her sick and she holed up until she felt better. I hope Moxie will show up soon, too.
Too much, it's too much. But for the Grace of God and morphing into a wet-wipe carrying nutjob, I've fended off the flu.

I've also so-far been lucky one little kitty hellbent on getting out against my wishes, and returning when I thought she'd never. I hope the same happens in your berg.

shy_smiley said…
Thanks for the well-wishes, my friends. Today Jack and I will file a Lost Pet report and check out the animals at the Humane Society, just in case Moxie turns up there. Then we'll come home and love our other animals, because they give us so much.
Ana said…
Sweet, sweet Becky.
I know the phrase "God never gives us more than we can handle" is supposed to bring comfort, but I agree with Gnightgirl: this is just too much.
I hope your posters bring Moxie home.
Hugs and love.
sulu-design said…
Oh, goodness. I'm just catching up on your posts from the last week and am so sorry to hear all that you're going through. My mother would also appeal to St. Anthony. I hope that Moxie gets home soon, and I hope that you're feeling better. You're in my thoughts.

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