Cover your mouth when you cough!
I say this over and over to my young one. She brings home the school bug every time – oh, those nasty, retched first-graders!
The bug hits and spread housedemic anyway. Little bro gets it. So does mom and dad. The dog laughs at us as we blow our noses.
Suddenly, I’m wary of everything. Wash your hands. Don’t sit on public toilets. For goodness sakes, bring a pair of socks when you go shoe-shopping. Did that person just take a pack of underwear to try on in the fitting room? Wear gloves at all times! Breathing masks!
Pretty soon, you’re walking around with hand sanitizer and Lysol, zapping doorknobs. This is the same person who played with dried gum under desks in middle school.
According to recent scientific studies, we carry more bacteria in our bodies from skin to gut compared to the number of cells that are pure, bona fide human. No wonder losing weight is so tough. The bacteria run around like remoras on sharks, partying inside of us like it’s 9999. Some of them we don’t mind. They help us out, so we take them along for the ride. Other of those critters inside us would make a lab tech run and pull out the Hazmat suit.
Strangely, this doesn’t freak me out as much so as to walk around wearing an aspirator.
The ‘V’ word is another worm altogether. It comes with scare tactics. Viruses are the reason many of us become germaphobes. Ebola, influenza, SARS, salmonella; I’ve yet to hear of a virus with a cute and cuddly name. Caution is best in those cases because, unfortunately, along with nasty bacteria, sickness and death may occur when exposed…
…but when did I truly get so germaphobic about it?
Ah. The Kids.
Being a parent really has put this one in a state of higher awareness. Otherwise, I’d be deep in Game of War hour upon hour. With higher awareness comes higher paranoia. I have to make sure to keep that in check. I try not to cry out ‘bloody murder’ when a play date’s parent neglects to mention until the last minute that her child has strep as she drops off her kid at my doorstep. Listen to those screeching tires as she peels away.
We should definitely teach our children the basics of sanitation, but let’s try to not go overboard with the germaphobic practices, unless you want raise a nest of overclean-compulsive kids. Now go spray that piano with Lysol.
We’ll go to Chuck E. Cheese after flu season. Shush up now and cover your mouth when you cough.