When the fever and stomach cramps got too much to keep me in bed, I sat up on the old wicker chair and watched Pure Country. Pure 80's hollywood country, with dames in tight orange leather and jaw-clenching smiles. That final scene where the immutably handsome George Strait has walked away from stardom and re-found his roots and flies said 80's dame to Vegas to serenade her in front of all his fans had me sobbing and falling in love with my wife all over again.
Next sleepless night I spent with chills, abdominal pain and The Sound of Music - not usually a gusher flick. The Von Trap kids have learned how to play and be kids, but when they splash laughing and yelping out of the lake to greet their returning father, he crushes them yet again with the whistle and sends them away. Captain and Maria have a glorious fight, he fires her, but just then the faint wisp of children singing drifts in on the breeze and an old part of Captain's soul starts to stir. He wanders up to listen, then slowly joins them, then - as if just remembering how - reaches out to hug and hold them. I fell in love with my children and my beautiful role in their lives all over again.
After a 3rd long hunched-over night, Sarah forced me to the doctor, who forced me to the hospital. I shooed her away for the hours of blood work - which she spent not doing the work she's been unable to do during my illness, but rather just being present with our boys who are a little scared - but she magically showed up just as I was tearily being told that I'd be one appendix lighter in a few hours. In her wicker basket were books, pictures from the boys, and a weather book that the always-thoughtful Galen sent for me. I appreciated all over again how our family cares for each other and finds ways to provide support we didn't even know we'd needed until they showed up.