The fact that I couldn't make a fist for about twelve hours without wincing in pain seems totally worth it. Considering the alternative: being able to make a fist for twelve hours without wincing in pain. Actually, the variety of choices at my disposal were much larger than that. I could have stayed home in the first place, but since we were all together, and in the spirit of Boxing Day we didn't want to be separated on the off chance that there be some savings opportunities to which we had yet to avail ourselves. First, however, there was a stop at my son's doctor to make certain that he was healthy enough to face the new year.
While we were waiting, I decided to nip on down the hall to see if I could work in a flu shot as long as we were in that great big building full of doctors and medicine. As it turns out, they were able to fit me right in, and the time it took me to fill out the form was longer than the time it took to jab me once in the arm and send me on my way.
Did I mention that it hurt? More than just having a needle poked through my skin, this one felt like it hit a muscle, which it turns out is just the right thing to do. It reminded me of the times, back in junior high school, when the boys who wanted to prove their worth to other boys watching would take turns punching me in the shoulder. The bruise I got back then was considerably larger and more colorful than the one the nurse left with the injection, and also didn't come with some stinging epithet or further threat to my safety.
The flu shot was given in the hopes of keeping safe from further infection. Even though I was warned against the possibility of "soreness or swelling at the site of shot, low grade fever and aches," I was holding out hope that once I regained the use of my arm, I would be indestructible. Or nearly. Next week I will be returning to the petri dish that is elementary education, and I imagine I will encounter all manner of viruses and germs. It's what one gets for hanging around a bunch of snotty nosed kids: a snotty nose.
For now I will have to settle for the sore arm, and hope that I wasn't inadvertently injected with some experimental serum that will eventually cause me to swell up to massive proportions and start slinging a red, white and blue shield around. Then I wouldn't have to worry about the flu at all, just the Red Skull.