It's amazing how this "cold" has wiped me out for nearly a week. I was sick the day my husband left for Chicago, and I was sick the day he came home. And then another day beyond that. Today I'm feeling better but not 100%. I'm starting to be able to taste things again, and my sense of smell is returning. But really, my smell and taste were basically wiped out for five days. You'd think that would make me lose weight. Of course not! Since my throat hurt I wanted ice cream, and lots of it.
So all I did was lie in bed for at least four of the five days, dozing in an out of sleep, listening to people fighting and screaming below me. I read "Jacob Have I Loved," a young adult novel by Katherine Patterson. Not nearly as good as "Bridge to Teribithia," but not nearly so sad either. Wow, I got the book club book done before book club! I love novels about the ocean, because water can be a metaphor for so many things--happiness, anger, life, love, and the unbreakable force of nature. I also learned a bit about crab mating, something I didn't know a thing about!
So when I came downstairs, showered, dressed and with makeup on at the tail end of this "cold," my kids looked at me like I had been transfigured. "She's alive," they seemed to whisper to each other. "She's not nearly as ugly as I thought," or "Why doesn't she look like this every day?" (Heads Up: I do shower and get dressed every day. It's just that when the kids haven't seen me that way for a while, and then I come downstairs with my hair not matted to my head, they think I've had an extreme makeover.)
Well, I guess those whispers behind my back are better than the "looks" I often get from my 15-year old daughter when I take her to school in my pajamas. I don't know why she should act shocked at this, I've been doing it for years. I guess it's just that now she sort of cares about her image, and I am part of her image apparently, and me in the mornings in my jammies, is like, totally embarrassing! "Are you wearing that?" she asks. "I most certainly am," I snap, "so you'd better stop looking at me like that and be grateful you're getting a ride instead of walking!"
I should mention that on the rare occasion when I happen to be dressed on the way to school, she looks at me, surprised, and says, "Mom you look good." I don't really look good; she's just shocked I'm not in my jammies. But it's nice of her to say so. Can I just say I hate women who have it all together before 9 am? They make me feel so slobbish.
Maybe I should try to pull it together more in the morning, hair and clothes-wise. It does feel good to be dressed while it's still morning. But then people would expect that, and I would have to keep it up, and that would be a lot of work. Because if I looked really good for a week and then said "forget it" the next, people might think I'd "let myself go" or that I'm depressed, or sick. But then again, if I jumped back on the wagon and got ready early, then they'd all think I'd had something done, that I was incredibly beautiful in comparison to how I looked the week before. Hmmmm. That's an idea. Just keep 'em guessing.
My friend Alison and I laugh at each other in the mornings. She only sees me in my red fleece or green fleece pajamas and I only see her in her navy blue bathrobe. When I pick up her daughter for school, that's the condition both of us are in. But we both know we will eventually get dressed and get it together later on. I like carpooling with her because how can she pass judgement on me when she's in her bathrobe? She can't. And she doesn't. I guess I should mention that Alison is pregnant, and can wear that navy blue bathrobe until she delivers if she wants.
What's my excuse? Now that I'm better I don't really have one, do I?