Heat under my palm where cool should be
Sleepy eyes ringed with circles over pale cheeks
Hoarse cough and hoarse voice
Dry and baking little fingers clasping my own
She asks for water after her medicine.
Not her first time with fever, nor the last
But her colds are rare, often sickness undaunting —
She turned down bouncy castles today
Choosing couch, pillow, blanket, quiet
Not her typical personality.
I count my blessings always that she’s healthy
I watch her drift into sleep with flushed cheeks
I hope and pray it’s just the virus others have had
A temporary shift into discomfort
Try to keep her happy.
But knowing there is only so much
Life goes on and due dates tick closer
Guilt and apologies, letting go her hand
She’s old enough to understand
Not sure which part aches more.