October 21, 2009

Praise Be Gatorade

Doctor: You have a stomach virus. You just need to take it easy, rest, drink fluids and take Tylenol for the aches and pains.

Me: You’re wrong. I am dying from some terminal illness – ripped up intestines or a fast moving cancer. I have been sick for 4 days! I will surely be dead by tomorrow morning and I will instruct my husband to sue you for every penny you have for mis-diagnosing me.

OK, I didn’t actually say that, but I thought it as I nodded my aching head and paid my $25 co-pay for the esteemed medical advice of “drink plenty of Gatorade and rest.”  Damn you Dr. Of the Moment at Ochsner Urgent Care facility. I am dying, can’t you see this? Did you not go to medical school? I looked up my symptoms on the symptom checker at WedMD.com and yes, it listed stomach virus as a possible cause, but it also listed colon cancer, appendicitis and tubal pregnancy. It could just as easily be that my pancreas has exploded and you just missed it.

Still, I drove myself home, quietly weeping at the thought of my young son being raised without a mother. Sure, he would have anything he wanted because of the medical malpractice windfall, but he would miss out on the warm embrace of his loving, although somewhat neurotic mother. My husband would be lost without me there to advise him. It’s true that he is the one who actually keeps the household humming along, but it is me who sits back and provides the running commentary and critique. What would he do without my guidance?

I stopped at the store and picked up 2 bottles of Gatorade, a box of Immodium, and 3 cans of soup. It was less than my co-pay. As I struggled to get the unusually heavy bag of goods in to my car, I fought back tears of exhaustion and frustration. Why? Why does God see fit to take me so young?

Back at home, my husband instructed me to lie on the couch and he would make the soup and get our son from daycare. He might as well, as soon he will have to do everything, I thought to myself as I settled in to watch the marathon of The Real Housewives of Atlanta on Bravo.

After moaning all night on the couch, and dozing off finally in a Tylenol PM-induced come, I woke up Friday morning…and felt better.

I suppose Gatorade does have healing powers.

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