One weekend early in November, just 5 months into our relationship, Jacob picked me up at APU so we could enjoy an autumn weekend in our hometown. What was usually a 4 hour drive to Clovis turned into an 8 hour one because the Grapevine was closed due to a fire. I felt sleepy at the beginning of the drive but that wasn’t surprising since we had been up late the night before with friends. But, 8 hours, a grande white mocha, 3 stops, and a Costco hotdog later, I felt like I had been run over by a bus and my glands were the size of golf balls. A few days later I would find out that I had mono.
I was confused. Mono? The kissing disease?? But I’m only kissing one person and I’m pretty sure he’s only kissing me! I later found out that the fact that I would share coffees with all my friends meant I was basically sharing coffees with 50 other people at our school. Gross.
But the point wasn’t how I got it, it was that I got it. I would spend the next 6 weeks looking like a chipmunk and doing homework between hourly naps and trying not to infect my roommates or Jacob. It was hard to be sick and not have my mom. I still want my mom when I’m sick. But, she was 4 hours away and I had to finish my semester.
In my mom’s absence, Jacob became my nurse. Whenever he could be in LA, he would bring medicine and buy me dinner and give me head rubs. When he couldn’t be there, he would text my roommates to make sure I was taking my medicine and call me to tell me to take a nap. He was so sweet. I already knew he was amazing, but this was a new level. I knew I didn’t look good and I knew that I wasn’t fun to be around, but he knew he loved me, so none of that mattered. I couldn’t believe that we had only been dating a few months and yet he was so sweet, willing to do anything to make me feel better. I don’t know many men who are that selfless.
At Thanksgiving break (about halfway through my sickness) we made the trip to Clovis once again. I had hoped to be better by then because I wanted to enjoy the holiday and Jacob’s birthday was just a few days after Thanksgiving. I wanted to make his first birthday with a real girlfriend special. I wanted to show him that I was thankful for him and that I could plan something fun (it was my turn to plan a fun date, after all). I tried to do those things, but standing up for more than a few minutes was difficult. Instead, we had a cozy day together. We got white mochas, went on a “walk” (which was really a “walk a few feet and sit on a bench and then walk a few more and sit down again”) to see the beautiful fall colors, decorated my parents’ Christmas tree, and then drank hot cocoa by a warm fire. It wasn’t all that I had planned or hoped for, but it was special because it was simple and real.
As the semester ended that winter, so did my bout with mono. I was happy to be healthy and Jacob was just excited that he had made it through without getting sick… And that we could kiss again. :)