Tuesday - Entry 21:
I came home with the bestest ever Christmas present two weeks ago. Wrapped in holiday cheer, and doused in the eggnoggy spirit of the warmth & happiness of the season, somebody gave me the flu. It was just what I always wanted.
The irony is that I fought to be there at Nana's to receive this gift. The Elf had been in the hospital with a virus-like illness, or complications from her gallbladder surgery. The doctors couldn't be quite sure. And therein laid my way into Christmas. How could my family prevent my girls and I from attending the festivities when even the doctors were not sure what had caused the Elf's discomfort? I pressed; I won. Then some hypocritical Grinch coated me in the merry slime of influenza. Both the Leprechaun and I, who had been otherwise healthy as Santa's reindeer, became sicker than Charlie Brown's Christmas tree sans makeover.
My Christmas gift kept on giving well past Boxing Day, changing from the flu into bronchitis as easily as tree lights blink. Then, when the chills and fever had passed, New Years Eve had been canceled, the Leprechaun had recovered, and I thought I had coughed up my last candy cane, I began to taste the hacks of Christmas past, and pnuemonia covered my lungs like snow on a wintery morn. Just ten days past Christmas and I was still all choked up because of the bestest gift any Secret Santa could give. I gasped for joy. Over and over again. It lasted until 5:30am on a chilly Saturday morn, and reluctantly I slipped off to sleep, the most ungrateful retch. Or wretch. Whichever.
Yesterday, on the thirteenth day of my Christmas gift, I discovered I was developing a sinus infection. The new symptoms after two weeks of Christmas cheer had me stuffed as full as a turkey. I celebrated the occasion by a return visit to the Instacare where a bespectacled Scrooge, overwhelmed by an endless stream of Christmas revelers, wondered irritably why I hadn't seen my own doctor for a follow-up. I snapped back at him that her office was closed at 9pm and it had only been two days since my last visit. Together we caroled away the few minutes he could spare before he rushed away like ten lords a'leaping to bring joy to the next sick soul.
Now, I shamble about my apartment, warm in the glow of antibiotics and Mucinex. I know I am getting better because I no longer launch into coughing spasms like a box of Christmas crackers whenever I mutter excitedly to myself. I even managed to get a load going in the wash. I may comb my hair next. The sky's the limit.
And when Christmas comes around again, I will make sure I remember to give back to my family a gift as hearty as the one they gave me. For surely the spirit of Christmas is to share the plague with those you love most dear.