Tuesday, October 19, 2004

MMMmmm Vapo-Rub

Yesterday I put on a brave face despite my cold, I cleaned out my closet (for some reason), I did the dishes, I made pancakes for Jason's midnight lunch. I showed that cold who's boss. Today, my cold fought back. And won. I have to call it sir now. It got me so good that all I want to do is snuggle under the blankets and feel sorry for myself. It's times like these when my back tickles from some Vicks Vapo-rub. When I was a kid, it would instantly make me feel better. Not some magical cure of course, I wasn't cold-free, but it was a definite Aahhhh feeling. My mother would rub it into my back, it would ease my sore muscles and before long I could actually breathe a little.

But things have changed. The ingredients in the vapo-rub are the same, but it doesn't do the same trick. The problem is with the hands. Everyone knows that you absolutely can't put vapo-rub on yourself. I think it even says so on the jar. It has to be someone else to be effective. What it should say is that it has to be your mom to be effective. Jason tries, but it sucks. He just smears the stuff, as if he's wiping his hands on my back, not trying to ease his poor sickly wife. So I tell him to rub like he means it, and he goes all S&M on me. He just does not have that firm yet gentle touch that my mother had, and apparently it cannot be duplicated. I miss those days when I feel asleep with my Rainbow Brite nightie sticking to my chest and my back, even the sheets would get the gunk on them but it didn't matter because it felt nice. Then you would get on the bus for school the next morning still smelling of the stuff, and you could usually smell it off one or two other kids too. You could just give them a silent nod, and know that you had the bond of vapo-rub.

How things have changed! Now I'm bondless. I don't smell like Vicks, I smell like expensive hair conditioner just like every other day. If no one smells you coming, they don't know to put their pity faces on and ask how you're feeling and if you should sit down. Being sick is a real letdown these days, there are no benefits to it at all, so what's the point? I have a raw, red nose for nothing. I can lie in bed looking pathetic all day and no one will notice, because no one is even here. When I was a kid I didn't have to stay home alone all day. I could go to Nanny's, where there were cookies and soap operas and someone to ask whether I should try a nap or have some more juice. That was the life!

But that was then. For now, I guess I'll just go lie down and rest quietly until Jason gets home so I can whine to him about how sick I am. A cold is not a cold without the whining. If at least 10 people don't know you're practically at death's door, then you aren't doing it right. Go lick a doorknob and try again next week.

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