Did you ever have a favorite teddy bear that you liked to sleep with as a child? Those were the days, right? Safe and comfortable and taken care of. And then you grow up and leaving behind the safety and comfort of childhood. That's what I thought and then... I was about 22 and had moved into my first apartment with my best friend from high school. I won't dwell on how much of a mistake that was, but I moved out five months later.
In the meantime, I went to work every day and my roommate worked the night shift. I was usually up until she left for work and gone before she got home in the morning. Not enough sleep and poor eating habits led to my getting sick twice that summer. Both times I was diagnosed with strep throat and both times I had different symptoms. Let me just say that I went to what would today be referred to as "an old country doctor". He had probably practiced in that same tiny little office for at least 40 years.
He didn't do any tests or cultures. You're supposed to get a culture for strep, right? Nope! The first time I just had a sore throat and otherwise didn't feel all that bad. The next time my glands were swollen, and I had a fever - for a solid week. I took antibiotics and aspirin around the clock for a solid week.
Did I mention that my parents were on vacation a thousand miles away? Or that my roommate had absolutely no sympathy for my situation? "Aren't you going to work" she asked? Duh! I'm sick! What do you think?
I began staying at my parents house even though they weren't there. I drew comfort from just being home. They were due back at the end of the week and I was literally counting the days. I suppose you are wondering where teddy bears come into the picture.
I was there when they got home, and the first thing Mom did was hand me a teddy bear. I instantly felt 100% better. My fever went down and I felt better than I had over in a week. It did go back up that evening, but I was so much better. I slept with that teddy bear for a very long time after that, and I still have him.
Was it the bear? Was it a mother's love? I think it was both, and they were one in the same.