Does anyone remember the movie Invasion Of The Body Snatchers (1956/remade 1978)? People replaced by alien impostors grown in pods all over California. Plans to take over the world one small town at a time. Ring a bell? For you younger folks how about Puppet Masters(1994)? Alien parasites hopping on the backs of unsuspecting humans. Controlling their minds and behavior with plans to take over the world one small town at a time. Sound familiar? Ok last one, The Faculty(1998)? Alien centipede like creatures… yada yada yada the same old Hollywood crap, aliens take over the world one small town at a time. My point is this: it happened. Aliens are real. They got my kid.
Lets give the infecting alien a name. Neck Chi Pox, or NCP for short. Our small fight for humanity started innocent enough. Donny came down with a low-grade fever and unquenchable thirst for water and cartoons. His demeanor seemed relatively the same. Not quite as energetic as usual which is actually a welcomed break for me. I failed to take his temperature throughout the day which proved to be a mistake. When MM(Mommy Moneybags) finally arrived home it was discovered that his temperature was 103.5. Over the next 48 hours his temperature fluctuated between 100 and lava. He was miserable and made no attempt to hide it. My normally charming and playful son had been replaced by an emotionless fire skinned creature from Uranus. Well, he did show one emotion, anger. He was kind of an asshole…from Uranus. By day three I started to panic and took him to see his pediatrician. I was told he simply had a cold and to treat his fever with baby Tylenol. That only pissed the NCP off more.
Once the fever was under control the real horror started. At this point the alien had complete control of Donny and it started after MM. It did most of its plotting at night which was quite clever. NCP kept Donny up at all hours screaming and whining thus preventing myself or MM from sleeping. Instead of being able to tackle Donny’s sickness as a team all we did was turn on each other. I ended up in the doghouse for not sharing the last of a two-day old chocolate chip cookie. It was damn worth it but that’s not the point. All he wanted was his mommy. He was completely uninterested in any comfort Dad could provide. He threw tantrums whenever I came near him. He wouldn’t even let her go to the bathroom without being by her side. I didn’t know what to do with myself. Daddy’s boy was gone. I was hurt. I was jealous. Dear old Dad had suddenly become chopped liver.
On the 5th day we decided MM couldn’t possibly suffer through another sleepless night. We decided Donny would toss and turn with me in our bed while MM got a much deserved evening of peace on the guest bed. That night I endured slaps to the face and kicks to the arm, ribs, and testicles. For real. I think he kicked me in my nuts on purpose. It was awful. Donny’s barrage of sickness induced violence finally ended around 3AM and he fell asleep. When I woke up a few hours later 1/3 of my body was literally hanging off the bed. Donny, like his mother, had completely overrun my side of the bed. He needed as much sleep as possible so I decided to just stay still and suffer. As I laid there hot and hanging off the bed with my bladder feeling like a beavers dam trying to hold back Niagara Falls, it hit me. This is what it’s like to be a Father. Most of his life I’ve been so consumed with being his Dad that sometimes I neglect my most important responsibility. Being his father. Being his Dad is awesome and fun. Dad gets to wrestle on the floor and play at the park. Dad gets to post cute pictures on social media and watch the “likes” pile up. Being Donny’s father means taking his temperature before it gets out of hand. Not feeling bad about sticking a thermometer up his butt. Being Donny’s father means getting over yourself. Accepting that sometimes a kid just wants his Mama. When Donny finally woke up it was clear he had defeated Neck Chi Pox. It gave me a very unexpected sense of accomplishment. I didn’t do anything directly to heal my son. I was just there. There for a kid whose life suddenly feels more important than my own.
- Thing I learned today – The “Neck Chi Pox(Chic Ken Pox)” has a new name, Roseola. Which is what Donny had. I know viruses can mutate and based on the symptoms of Roseola it sounds like the chicken pox has simply outmaneuvered the vaccination. Plus once your child gets it they become immune to it. I’m no doctor but it sounds like the chicken pox to me. 2015 Vintage
- I’m starting to hate cupcakes. The next disappointing cupcake I have might spur on a profanity laced rambling about the sorry state of the once proud cupcake. I’ve always wanted to write one of those angry blogs.
- Sports Minute – It’s finally going to happen. I don’t want to jinx it any further than that.
Thank you very much for stopping by. This is the fifteenth Daddy Day By Day. I have about three or four half written posts for this much neglected blog. Hopefully they’ll all be completed and posted within the next two to three weeks. Thank you for being patient. If you have any questions, rants, feelings, anything positive, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or simply comment below. Please click on one of the two “follow my blog” links on the right. For you mobile users the links are at the bottom of the page. Talk to you soon…