Fallen Marine no match for tough wife

Written by Bob on January 25th, 2017

‘I couldn’t find the soup strainer so I used one of your socks.’

YUCAIPA, Calif. – Most people think of Marines as being strong and tough. That’s true in combat. But in sickness, I for one surrender like a whimpering coward.

I’m in my sixth day suffering through an ugly bout of a cold, or maybe it’s the flu. Runny, sniffling nose, watery eyes, pounding headache targeted just above my eyes; and let’s just say, I don’t stray too far from the bathroom.

In this sixth day, I’ve blown (literally) through four boxes of tissue. I think I’ve earned a rebate from Kleenex.

This nasty illness has also stricken my wife Nan. She has every symptom I have.

However, there’s a huge difference in how we are handling our shared suffering. My wife battles through the day like a brave Marine in hand-to-hand combat. She refuses to surrender to this most intrusive invader.

    I can just hear her internal voice saying:

“To hell with you (cold or flu), you’re not stopping me. Get out of my way!”

But you won’t see such heartiness from me, the ‘tough’ Marine.

While she dashes about the house getting things done, I lay curled up on the recliner covered head-to-toe with a warm blanket watching re-runs – That 70s Show, Seinfeld, The Drew Carey Show, and even Gunsmoke – for hours on end.

I leave my recliner only for the kitchen or bathroom. In other words, I restrict my movements only for putting something in one end and getting rid of it out the other end.

In our early, married years, I could profit some sympathy from my wife by pleading that she come to the aid of her ailing man. But soon enough she became wise to my whining. And I have only myself to blame:

“Nan, could you bring me another blanket, I’m freezing.”

“Honey, I’m thirsty, do we have any orange juice?”

“Nan, could you bring me my slippers, my feet are ice cold.”

“Honey, I’m hungry. Do we have any chicken noodle soup?”

    But all her sympathy came to an abrupt end when I regrettable uttered this plea many years a go:

“Nan, when I was a little boy and got sick, my mom would make me homemade tomato soup and mix in a little milk. Sometimes she would even spoon-feed me. Why can’t you be more like mom?”

And now I must suffer through illness alone, a most tragic case of a fallen Marine.

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