speak softly and carry a big can of lysol

speak softly and carry a big can of lysol

Something’s come up at our house. Actually, many things. And I don’t mean that in the overscheduled, too too busy, suburban family type of way.

I mean it in the stomach virus kind of way.

I’m sorry, I really am – and I’ll understand if you stop reading now. It’s surprising to me that I would choose to write about this, given that usually the mere mention of the two words ‘throw’ and ‘up’ at the same time and not referring to some type of game involving a ball elicits the very mature response of me placing my hands over my ears and saying shut up shut up shut up rapidly and at an increasing level of volume until the person speaking to me decides once and for all that I am certifiable and walks quickly away. I guess that today I am feeling a little punitive. Like if this is going to get foisted on me on my one lovely Monday of the week that I get to spend alone, try to reorder my thoughts and my life…well, then, maybe I’ll do a little foisting of my own. Self-centered, I know. Welcome to my inner life: please fasten your seat belts and make sure the safety bar is pulled down and locked.

My precious Jonathan is the afflicted one today, the only one of the five of us to have completely escaped the weird 24-hour fever-and-nothing-else thing that swept through our household during the last couple of weeks. Why is it that when we are all going to get sick, we can’t all do it at approximately the same time? Instead, it’s one sick, then better, and we glow in the hope that it’s passed the rest of us by. Silly, silly people. IT NEVER PASSES YOU BY. Just know that.

Jonathan is our middle child, and somewhat of an enigma to the rest of us, as middle children often are. Sometimes it seems like God stuck him in there just to remind us that not everyone is just like us, and we had better get okay with that. I fear for his therapy bills in the future. He just wants simple things from us, really, like schedules. Plans. Regularity. Not the sorts of things that flourish over here in the casa de Jones.

Last night, before the madness started, he and I went to Starbucks to spend one of the coupons we gave him for Christmas. As we sat there drinking our coffees, he said, “I get to come back here again, because I never used my coupon from last year. I think I’ll save it for December.”

I guess that part is only funny if you know that I would have lost my coupon from last week already, much less last year – and that my most elaborate plans usually involve “sometime later today.”

He is equally serious about his illness – we’re to the Sprite drinking stage now, and he’s sipping judiciously. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s timing it by the commercials on TV. He also just informed me that he’s been doing deep breaths in and out since this morning, and that’s what’s keeping him from throwing up. It’s good to have your theories.

I have theories too, and for today at least, I am serious. Everyone has been forced to take their Airborne. I have turned into the cleaning warrior (yes, I do have a cape. No, you can’t borrow it.) – as if I can singlehandedly protect everyone else in the family if I can rid the house of germs. The windows are open (in this 49 degree weather) and if you drive down our street you should be able to identify it from the fresh! linen! scent! of Lysol emanating from within. Gone are environmental concerns for the day – everything gets washed in hot water, and absolutely everything goes through the dryer. Die, virus, DIE!

I should note in the interest of accuracy, fairness, and complete gratefulness that my sainted husband spent the several worst hours of the night right with Jonathan, sleeping on the floor in his room. I do love that man, and that is just one of the many reasons why. Thank you sweetheart, and know that I’m doing my best to vanquish the vomitous enemy from our home…


  1. I’d like to be the first to note that you admitted in writing to giving a nine year old coffee:)

  2. so that’s where my cape disappeared to

  3. how can i stop reading when i foisted the my-husband-has-a-string-up-his-butt — and so have my dogs — story on you sunday morning?

  4. what i love is that fresh!linen!lysol!  that’s just pure music to my ears (and bouquet to my nose). we’ve been battling this bug over at the kimrey compound now for 4 days.  if you can imagine me with a red-tinged pony-tail (yes, use your imagination as i was holding the little one when he BLESSED me with red gatorade).  thankfully, the red finally washed out after 2 days. 
    my 6 words:
    stomach virus sux the big one

    (toe, people, sux the big toe)

  5. hawk

    We are so glad to be over the what’s up………………and I totally understand the spend the night with the kids sainthood of husbands……..

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