Thursday morning, around 11:30, I got a call from my daughter’s camp telling me that she had a fever of 102 and that I’d have to come get her. On the ninety minute drive north, I called the pediatrician and made an appointment for 4:15, rescheduled my next day’s lunch, and cancelled a filming gig for that day.  A little frustration started kicking in as I hit big city sized traffic in what was once a very small town. Those thoughts vanished when I saw my girl’s downtrodden, flushed little face at the nurses’ station. She got my best mom smile and a big hug.  We set up a comfy, snuggle spot in the back seat and stopped for a cold Sprite and a small order of fries.

Ninety minutes minutes later, Dad took her to the doctor while I hit the store for a roasted chicken, carrots, celery and egg noodles. At check-out, I mentioned that my little girl was sick and the cashier told me that their soup was on sale. I chuckled derisively, but only a little bit.

Once home, I stripped the meat from the bone and put the carcass and some of the skin (fat=flavor) in a large pot with the standard mire poix, parsley and peppercorns, covered the ingredients with half water/half stock and brought it to a near boil, reduced the heat to simmer then cooked for about 2 hours. I strained out carcass and veggies, returned stock to pot, added stripped meat, newly sliced carrots and celery; made dumplings and served with pre-cooked egg noodles.  Sammie sucked down a bowl with another glass of Sprite, anti-biotics, and Motrin.  Fifteen minutes later, Dad drove off to Urgent Care with a fever and a temper, I downed 800 milligrams of Ibuprofen and went to bed early.

Friday, I called in sick to my radio show.  Oddly enough, after a 2 hour nap, I felt fine. I believe there must be some unknown force that I can only classify as “mom power.” It’s an instinct. It’s a Mom thang!! I’m not saying that dads don’t have the capacity for care-giving. My husband works miracles when I’m flat on my back (you know what I mean), but when the house be sick, mom be it!  

Who knows if it’s mind over matter or the simple fact that female matter doesn’t abide with unpronounceable viruses, we rally and get it ALL done! Yesterday, I cleaned the house; did the laundry; penned the majority of this little rant; kissed foreheads and soothed fevered brows; prepared a medium, but not too cold, bath and played umpteen games of UNO; stopped by Justice to return a pair of skorts and pick up a new webkins for my little sweetie; hit Fry’s for stew meat, more Sprite, and a bottle (2) of a really nice Merlot.

btw – My Soup/Stew for Saturday Night:  

Saute an onion in a bit of olive oil then pour into a big bowl and set aside. Cube and sear about 1 ½ pounds of stew meat, salt and peppered in batches; deglaze pan with 1 ½ cups good red wine.  Add 6 cups beef or chicken stock and 2 cups water.  Return meat and onions to pot.  Add 4 cloves garlic – smashed and 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary;  2 cups carrots and coarsely ground pepper. Bring to a boil for 15 minutes.  Reduce heat and add 1 lb. mushrooms, quartered.  Cook over low heat for about 2 hours and serve over leftover egg noodles with some crusty bread and a hearty glass of that red.

Sunday?  Up early with my child’s fever and some anti-biotics; ate a bowl of leftover beef soup and pulled a chicken from the freezer. I crawled back into bed with a large glass of iced water and read until 12:00pm.  Then, I went out to pick up some gyros for the family at our favorite joint down the street, poured another glass of iced water and read until 3:00pm.  Guess I was a little more worn out than I thought – this was my well earned day of rejuvenation.

Oven is preheated to 325, no soup today!  Chicken is trussed, slicked, salt and peppered; potatoes chopped and ready to go; salad in a bag.  Dad is working on his Monday afternoon professorial debut after watching his beloved (and suprising) Bronco’s pull out another one.  Child is content and feverless with her doll and Club Penguin and I, my friends, am ready for anything!

Cough into your sleeve, wash your hands thoroughly and often, get good rest and a flu shot.  But most importantly, take good care of yourself.  Someone needs you!!