Stay until your love is alive and kicking.

My HMB has nasty asthma which has plagued him practically since birth. We have spent countless hours in the emergency room only to find that he has another pneumonia so we'll be sticking around for a couple of days.

He would fight and make such a fuss. After a couple of days, I would begin to pester the doctors to release us. He refused to let any nurse even give him a Tylenol much less a temp check or a breathing treatment and if I was to nurse him, I'd prefer sleeping in my own bed and eating meals that didn't include milk cartons and jelly packets. He benefited greatly from the IVs although once they put it in the arm attached to his sucking thumb which made for some dreadful nights where I was forced to crawl into his hospital baby bed, rails and all, before either of us could get any sleep. One's dignity is secondary when one's child's has his sucking thumb all taped up.

Once or twice, sleep deprived and anxiety ridden, I channeled Aurora Greenway. I'm certain I wasn't the first or last they'd seen of such antics in the hospital. That's why that Terms of Endearment scene works so well. Other times, I seethed privately.

A couple years ago, when we were still frighteningly dependent on a particular asthma treatment, I found myself seething for another reason. While picking up said treatment from the pharmacy, I was shocked to learn the out of pocket cost was so high. But it was nearly October and I had cracked the code of HMB's recurring bronchial issues. Exploitation it was. As the pharmacist tech was processing payment, I noticed what appeared to be the Morning After Pill on the shelf just behind him.

Is that the Morning After Pill?, I inquired.
He glanced over his right shoulder. Yes.
Out of curiosity, how much is it?
Forty bucks, said the pharmacy tech, blandly.

Apparently, these days it costs twice that to keep 'em alive.