Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A dismal month of sore throats and broken limbs

Last December was a dismal one for me with two hand fractures, three severe ear-throat infections and one long fever shared between the four members of my family. In week one — my husband broke his right arm. “Aren’t you glad we have something called a health faucet?” I joked. Curse my tongue; in week two he broke his left shoulder. “What do you do to him? Thrash him around?” snapped the Ortho. From then on if anyone asked how he managed the double feat within a wee gap of six days, we unanimously replied, “The wife did it,” sparing ourselves the onerous task of recounting the bizarre sequence of events that lead to the twin twists. Week three my son developed this peculiar earache which struck nocturnally only. His nightly howls put the entire owl and dog population in our locality to shame. One more week of screeching and I would have opened a night school for owls and dogs to learn a thing or two from my son.
“It is punishment from the cosmos for playing deaf to your parents during daytime,” I declared.
My son toggled between victim and perpetrator depending on the sun’s status in the sky, whereas I was victim round the clock. What with his antics during the day and howls during the night, and with me enduring his painful activities by day and panicking over his pain at night. Phew! To add to the misery, my daughter and I also contracted the very same severe ear-throat infection. Despite the pain, I must admit that week three was the best, as all three of us could neither speak nor hear well. A rare peace and quiet pervaded the house and for once my husband’s wish came true — his voice was the loudest in the house. We all didn’t talk back and he (despite knowing the truth) presumed we all heard him fully. Week three was quite manageable as long as the phone didn’t ring. The only person in the household who could speak audibly had both his arms tied. The remaining three of us had our hands free but voices and ears tied. It was sheer torture when the phone rang. I would have to lift the phone and place it on my husband’s ear for him to explain the unique ear-throat-hand situation to the caller. Next he had to literally put his ear to my mouth to decode what I was whispering and speak the same into the mouthpiece and follow it up by shouting into my ear what the caller had conveyed. Between the three interconnected tasks of listening keenly to me, speaking normally into phone and shouting back messages into my ear, my husband got confused. He whispered to me, shouted into the phone and put his ear on the phone’s mouthpiece, instead of mine. Added to this confusion, his questions directed at me, “Are you able to hear me? Can you be a bit louder?” were enthusiastically answered by the caller. All this became too much for him. He slammed the phone and wanted to fight. But I could neither hear nor speak. So we hit upon the idea of a scream-type match. My husband would shout at me at the top of his voice with his Gtalk open (which I logged on to for him) and I would type out repartees to his shouts from my laptop using my free hands. Not a very satisfying, fulfilling, crunchy fight but it served the purpose. Week four, my ear-throat infection turned into high fever and I completely woke up to the truth that moms can fall ill but cannot report it or lose their “cool” even while boiling at 1020C. It is January that finally sent me a get-well-soon card.

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