Monday, 28 January 2013

Man flu vs Mum flu

toddler looking out of the front window - sun is shining There was a bit of winter media madness last week as we saw various 'news' headlines claiming that "man flu is real." Now I know that real flu is pretty awful for anyone, but when we refer to man flu we're not talking about that, what we mean is the man in our life has sniffles or is feeling 'a bit off' and takes to lying on the sofa holding his head and moaning.

Of course if he's genuinely ill I'm sufficiently sympathetic, but only for so long. Hubbie takes great pride in not having taken a sick day off work - like ever - but he is still prone to bouts of the dreaded man flu. When he does it's usually in response to my having been poorly - I should be flattered really the poor mite doesn't like to feel left out.

I caught norovirus a few years ago, you know the proper 24 hr vomiting flu. As I was doubled over in pain I told him it was fine to go to his school reunion as he wasn't really going to be able to do much for me and I would just rest anyway. So he drove down to Hampshire and had a great evening, then I got a call the following morning with the plaintive cry, "I've caught what you've got <cough>" I managed to stop retching long enough to correct him, "No dear, you don't have norovirus - what you have is a hangover."

Of course as parents when we're ill we still have to do everything we normally do. It's never that bad (compared with norovirus that is) and I can't bear to sit around being sick. However, we still have different approaches to being sick:

Man Flu: He starts to dig the car out of the snow, but decides to drive it first, getting it stuck in the aforementioned deep snow

Mum Flu: I push the buggy in deep snow up the hill and take 8 buses to get the boy to nursery and back as the car is snowed in

Man Flu: He gets the shopping and leaves 6 bags of shopping on the kitchen floor for the unpacking fairies to deal with (they do)

Mum Flu: I prepare all the meals, do all the washing etc. as usual - oh and put away all the shopping instead of resting while he 'takes care of it.'

Man Flu: He goes to bed early leaving the front & back door unlocked, all the lights on and yet more items of shopping in the stairs

Mum Flu: I take my son to all his usual activities including baking bears where he keeps running off and takes advantage of my weakened state to flatten me on the floor so that I want to leave him there

Man Flu: He snores so loud it sounds like the churning of gears in a car being driven by an incompetent learner

Mum Flu: I've been awake since 4am (see above) so I'm really not in the best state to do anything all day, but I still get all the swimming kits ready, the car packed for a visit to Grandma and Grandpa and manage to keep my wits about me through lunch even though I'm dead on my feet.

Man Flu: he says, "I'll look after the boy this weekend so you can rest"

Mum flu: I don't say "I'll look after the boy, the cat and take care of the house so you can go to work."
White cat sitting on black leather sofa
Because that's what I always do.

Right, I'm off to bed now. Do you have any earplugs I can borrow please ?

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