As we got the boys packed up yesterday evening for our run to the E.R., the wife’s sickly pallor only slightly less frightening than her 104 temperature, I realized that I haven’t had a day this bad in quite a while. It’s comforting, in a way, to realize it’s on you, kind of like when you throw up, and realize that at the very least you don’t have to worry about when you’ll next throw up, because you’re actually doing it.

Or maybe I have a very sour view of the world. Don’t worry, she’s much better now. Friends in our neighborhood rushed over and took care of the boys, alleviating my fear that they would catch Ebola in the waiting room. They even bathed them. It’s almost enough to make us want to stay in our neighborhood, if not for our increasing conviction that we need a smaller mortgage and more land. Our friends were even kind enough to direct us to a small nearby hospital, saving us a miserable time downtown.

The wife was seen immediately; the only other patient a quiet little girl of maybe five or six. She was with people I assumed were her parents. The odd thing is that she was in an O.B.-type room, sitting on a table with stirrups. There were regular exam rooms available. Why would a girl that young need that kind of exam?

Later, the Wife’s problem diagnosed, and a nuclear-bomb level of antibiotics coursing through her bloodstream, I stepped outside to make a call. On the way out I passed the doctor at her desk. She was talking to someone on the telephone, explaining that she found or suspected a sexually-transmitted disease. I want to believe there had been another patient, and that she wasn’t talking about that little girl. I wish we lived in a world where the alternative wasn’t even a possibility.


  1. debbie

    Feel better soon. I love you and will pray for you both to get well quickly
    Love, Debbie

  2. Danielle

    I get the title of your post now. Makes my stomach feel hollow. I was surprised, on OBGYN, how many ‘consults’ we got on children. At least a few a week. Not always for those reasons, but some of the times. I still can’t even wrap my head around the fact that we had to do an exam on a baby, under anesthesia, because they don’t even manufacture specs that small–to insert without hurting her you know. Ugh.

  3. Carol

    It goes on all the damn time. The place where I volunteer, where most of the kids have been raped or molested, is almost always full. These are kids whose behavior is so bad, having been raped and/or abused for God knows how long, that they cannot stay in their regular foster homes. It seems like it never stops.

    Never ever forget that the animals in human skin are always out there. Not just to protect your own wee ones, but to watch out for all the other babies out there with no one to watch over them.

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