Gastric flu


Long into Friday night, hours after first worrying she might be sick, Eliza was. On Monday, Eliza missed her first day of junior school. A clean attendance record lasting three years and one term ended. Through the week, she suffered stomach cramps, loss of appetite. It wasn’t until the following Sunday, when she woke up and ran into the kitchen that the flu was beaten.


Gabe asked to spend Saturday out of the house. He didn’t want to catch the flu. He avoided spending time in the same room as Eliza, refused to touch plates that she had used when eating the tiny portions of food she could manage. His quarantining of his sister worked as he stayed healthy.


By mid-week, Robin was accusing Eliza of faking. She should be back at school he said. Part and parcel of a period of squabbling between the two of them. The following Sunday, Robin woke in the night and spent over an hour with his head in the toilet. He wasn’t actually sick but was unwell. The day Eliza returned to school, he had to take off. L & I contemplated another week of juggling work with sick leave. Then by Monday afternoon, Robin recovered.


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