My sister wasn’t feeling well and my mom was concerned. Although, thinking about it, concerned might be too mild a term. Perhaps, “OMG, my daughter is dying,” would be a better description. Because, you know, it is a completely normal jump from “Not feeling well” to “What do you mean you aren’t feeling well? You are going to die.”
Anyway, her first instinct was to immediately cancel all of her students and move to Chicago. Once she determined that might not be a viable option, her next choice was to call one of my sister’s friends to come stay with my sister for one night to make sure that death did not make an untimely (and improbable) visit.
I live about 5 miles from my sister. I see her at least once a week. Sometimes twice a week. In fact, four times is known to happen. We like each other. (Now anyway, this was debatable from my perspective in high school). And we rely on each other – mostly for entertainment purposes but, hey, we can be serious if the situation calls for it.
But even knowing this, I was not my mother’s first choice of caregivers.
In the interest of full disclaimers, I do have to admit that my nursing skills are in the range of “Would you like me to bring you some chicken soup?” and “Have you tried taking a hot shower?” I am less skilled in the “Blood is pouring out of that wound” or “Why won’t it get better with some extra sleep” department.
And if I’m ever sick, I am probably going to call this same friend to come take care of me. But it’s the principle of the matter.
My mother would choose a friend over her own oldest daughter.
But that’s ok. I suppose it’s a good thing to not be first in line as caregiver. This way I can avoid the common colds and infectious flu problems and focus more on the situations that require friendship and wine.
And I’m really good at providing wine.