wizard rarely gets sick. when he does, he gets scary-feels-like-dying sick. today wizard is home sick. today i’m taking care of him in whatever ways i can think of to ease his discomfort, mostly bringing him saltine crackers and assuring him that he probably won’t die. probably. then i ask him if he wants to go to the hospital and he says no. i get another cold rag for his forehead, encourage him to drink more water, and hum very softly next to him while he groans. we’ve been in this position many times before in the reverse.
in the decades wizard and i have been together, i spent many years sick in bed. he took a job where he could work from home in order to take care of me. he carried me down countless flights of stairs for emergency room visits and broke me out of hospitals when i couldn’t stand to stay imprisoned for another hour (or day or week). i owe my life to wizard in a literal way. on the rare occasion i have the opportunity to reciprocate care-taking, i’m grateful.
today i’m grateful that my body is healthy enough to care for someone else who doesn’t feel well. today i’m grateful for giving what i can give and that my giving is enough to ease another’s pain. today i’m grateful for chicken noodle soup and bendable straws and fluffy pillows and soft blankets and hot showers and library books and air conditioning. today i’m grateful that we can help each other heal. today i’m grateful for slowing down and sitting quietly and soothingly singing lullabies because those activities help heal me in the moments i give them as much as they help him feel better, too.