Whew! There's something going around at school that is keeping kids out three days at a time.
It's all on the up-and-up. They come back with medical excuses. One girl was busy coughing up a lung, her spleen, and quite possible a smidgen of her duodenum on her first day back.
"Are you okay? Do you need a drink?"
"A drink won't help. Nothing helps."
"So, you've been to the doctor. Did they give you any medicine?"
"Yeah. I've been taking my medicine. But the doctor doesn't know why I'm sick. They took a lot of blood samples. In fact, I passed out because they took so much blood. But the doctor says my red cells and white cells are normal. He can't figure it out. I went there because I was coughing up blood. Not just blood, but thick chunks of blood. I thought it was part of my lungs. But the doctor doesn't know why I'm sick. Oh! I forgot to turn in this work you sent me."
She came back to my desk, all the way from her assigned seat near the door. She laid the papers in front of me. I looked at her. "No offense." I picked them up singly, with thumb and forefinger, and moved them to the corner of my desk, where I fanned them briefly. "I'll get to those after while." She started to laugh. Which resulted in a booming cough. Which was not my intention.
Another lass in another class told me she was sick the day before. Told me in the hall, her face mere centimeters from mine. Her cough was of the dry, hacking variety. Her face was flushed. She came back to my desk midway through class to ask to get a drink. Came right behind my desk, in fact, until she was standing over me, exhaling.
"Yes! Go get a drink! Now!"
Yesterday she again met me in the hall. I couldn't shrink away. The hall wall was at my back. She was asking to change clothes after pictures, because her class was going on a reward trip.
"Sure. Go change. Just don't come any closer! I'm not trying to be mean. But you told me yourself that you were sick."
I don't mean to appear unfeeling. But I don't think I should have to sacrifice my health to be all cozy with them and their germs. I think that's beyond the call of duty.