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Nurse Big Guy to the rescue

Submitted by on Thursday, 29 January 2009 No Comment

back_painIt was a desk chair that did me in.

A friend gave it to me a few weeks ago after I complained that the seat padding on my 10-year-old model was uncomfortably thin. She had an extra, I gave it a test sit and took it home.

About a week later, though, it started to torture me. At 3 a.m., it was torturing Big Guy too, as my ability to put on a happy face failed me.

And I’m glad it did, because I learned a lot about what a small child is capable of when you put aside your pride and let him.

The new chair was a joy at first. My rear was happier, but then my back began to complain. It started with a few gripes here and there before advancing to outright crankiness.

I was all right during the day, when filling Boots’ mommy-do list kept me hopping up and down. But at night I had no more sense than to sit for five straight hours with few breaks, and my back let me know it was not going to put up with that.

So there I was, whimpering like a baby at 3 a.m., trying to find a combination of pillow and body positions that would let me sleep without shooting pain.

And if pain is shooting me, it’s some pretty high caliber stuff. I gave birth to Boots without so much as an aspirin, though I hadn’t planned to do it that way. I’ve bounced back quickly from tangled toes and a fractured femur. It was a little ego-deflating for a few spasms to fell me.

What happened next, though, was even more embarrassing.

Hearing my moans and awakened by his own barking cough, Big Guy found his way into my room.

“What’s wrong, Mommy?”

“My back’s hurting again,” trying to dial the moans down to a whine.

“Can I help you?”

“No, I just need to sleep.” Argggggh. A fresh spasm put an end to the brave act. OK, so maybe there was something he could do. “Can you help me get up?” I asked.

He nodded. “If you need to cry, it’s all right,” he said.

I lifted myself upright by doing a reverse chin-up off the headboard and managed to swing my legs over the side of the 30-inch high bed without moaning loudly enough to wake Boots as well. Big Guy came close to the side and I grabbed his shoulders to help lift myself the rest of the way.

We hobbled into the kitchen. “Do you need your medicine?” he asked.

Yes, I did, but there was  none in sight. A 500-caplet bottle of Tylenol had expired in 2003. A vat of Advil, even older. I was ready to weep.

“Why don’t you take my medicine?” he asked.

Brilliant. Humiliating, but brilliant. Here I was, a 44-year-old mother groaning in pain and not able to figure out how to end it, saved by a 5-year-old. I chugged children’s Ibuprofen and agreed with Big Guy. That stuff is disgusting.

We hobbled back to the bedroom, where he helped me arrange pillows. Then he had to help again because I couldn’t get the blankets over my feet.

Once I was settled, he climbed in next to me and patted my hand. “You’ll get better. You’re going to be all right.”

At that instant, I could see his future: 3 a.m. wakeup calls, not from a whiny mom, but from his own child.

If he does as well with him as he did with me this morning, that’s going to be one lucky kid.

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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