Here, Have Some Whine

We’re experiencing record setting temps here. Flowers are blooming, lawns are being mowed and the windows are open.

And, for the first time in his life, Mr. Kewlstuff appears to be suffering from seasonal allergies. He stops whining just long enough to sneeze. To impress me with how gravely ill he is, he actually went back to bed, not once, but twice last weekend.

Having suffered from allergies most of my adult life, I can say, without hesitation – welcome to my world wuss.

It’s been discussed ad nauseum, but I’ve yet to hear a plausible explanation as to why the world stops revolving when a man isn’t feeling well; but when a woman has similar symptoms it’s business as usual.

You don’t have to be a bra-burning feminist to see that women take a back seat when it comes to being sick. I can’t prove it, and I’m sure they’d deny it, but even the medical profession is guilty of treating ailing men with deference. Don’t believe me? Read on…

Mr. Kewlstuff had his gallbladder removed just two months before I did. After surgery he was taken to his room where his very attentive nurse poked her head in every 15 minutes, checked his vitals every hour and even fluffed his pillows. Fluffed. His. Pillows. He was served a light lunch and released.

Fast forward to the same hospital two months later. I wake up after surgery right back where I started; in a pre-op cubicle made of curtains. Even though the surgery had been scheduled eight weeks in advance, I apparently took them by surprise, and there was no room available.

They finally moved me to a room later that afternoon and told me I’d be discharged after dinner. A couple of hours later, someone from dietary presents me with a plate of mystery-meat swimming in gray gravy. Seriously? Gravy? For a post-surgical gallbladder patient? Hey, did you notice I haven’t mentioned a nurse yet? That’s because not one nurse had entered the room.

Another hour passes. Finally a nurse comes in… but it turns out she’s not there to see me. Nope. She’s there to take my ambulatory IV pole for another patient. Faster than I can object, she hooks my IV bag to a stationary pole attached to the bed and leaves.

Now I’m trapped in the bed, and my Type-A personality, which had been sedated all day, woke up in overdrive.

So, despite Mr. Kewlstuff’s protests and face-palms, I took the IV out of my arm, got dressed and said “You need to go tell the first nurse you see that they’ve got five minutes to get those discharge papers in here, or I start pulling IV’s out of everyone on this floor.”

See, I can say stuff like that and he only half-believes me, so that was not the message he relayed. But he still had a nurse in there, papers in hand, in about 30 seconds. Because he gets me. Which is the only reason I don’t kill him when he’s sick, no matter how much he whines.

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