She is intolerant of sniffles. When her nose runs, she is mad with contempt.
– Why is my nose always running?
– It’s just a cold, Jordan. We all get them.
– I don’t understand why my nose gets so cranky.
And there you have it: Jordan’s personification of the world. Her runny nose is not a symptom of a seasonal cold, it is an insubordinate appendage caught in an insurrection against her body. She scolds her feet the same way. When she tries to wear her boots without her braces the big toe sometimes pokes down and makes her uncomfortable. We adjust and try again, sometimes requiring several tries. Whenever the toe falls down again she rages.
– Oh! Toe, why are you being so stubborn?
She’ll appeal to me.
– Dad, you need to talk to Toe. She won’t get back up.
Still, she sounds far more sickly when she has a cold than she has at times when cancer has had the best of her. She can weather chemotherapy, brain surgery, and a litany of seizures without much complaint. She bounces back, displaying strength unfathomable–the kind of strength that arrests you and makes you feel terribly small. But a cold … you’d think she was stricken with consumption. She slouches around the house, whines and laments her failing health. I received three phone messages on Thursday, while I was traveling. Each was more pitiful than the last. It’s the contradiction of Jordan, the dichotomy that makes her irresistible.
She’s feeling much better now. The cold has passed. She spent the weekend at her grandparents, saw a movie and snacked on her favorite munchies. She even helped her mom clean her room (dissect that phrase, something isn’t right). She’s doing well. I’ve noticed that she is calmer now that the big date with the MRI has passed and the results were good. She’ll be just fine until she happens upon the next batch of sniffles.