It seems counterintuitive, but it turns out that people infected with the new plague actually seem to be relieved by smoke. Though the fresh and damaged version of the zombie illness is hitting them in their lungs, blow-by marijuana smoke does seem to have a positive effect.
Yeah, I know. Strange. The folks in my house aren't using the stuff, but the clinic is treating several people with more difficult breathing and it's doing some good. I don't know if the moderate amount of THC they're getting from the indirect inhalation is just relieving some of the pain or if it's the particulate matter of the smoke itself making the two warring versions of the plague behave better, but it's a win.
Funny that the end of the world came, and instead of toking up given the lack of law, people are instead really using the stuff for a medical purpose. With disturbing numbers of zombies still milling around outside the walls, you'd think a lot of people would be getting high if for no other reason than to mitigate the insane level of stress that situation creates.
But, no. Our people are way too laser-focused on getting their jobs done and seeing to the most important needs of the community. Maybe one day when everyone is safe, we'll have a party and those who want to partake can do so without fear of endangering others with slow reactions. I hope that day comes, I really do. Not for the freedom to indulge (I never cared for the stuff myself) but for the simple freedom to choose.
Jess isn't doing any better, but she's not doing any worse either. That's something, I guess, but I can't quite get over waking up after my very minimal naps and seeing her unchanged. New cases of the plague are slow in developing at the moment, and a few more people have beat the thing overnight. Sadly, two more deaths as well, which only makes me wish to see Jess pop up one morning hale and hearty. Other people are doing it, why not her?
It's terribly stressful, but I try to keep cool in front of her. One small piece of solace is this blog, which she doesn't read. I mean, why would she? I'm right here, and everything I say on here she could just ask me. So in this space I can complain about my worries, fret over the fact that she reacts very badly to smoke of any kind and thus won't benefit from this new treatment if she does get worse, and I don't have to worry about her feeling bad for me. I'm trying my damnedest to be her rock right now. I don't know how much she needs it.
The zombie plague has destroyed much, and in my wife it has beaten away the layers of fear and worry. Jess used to be shy and unsure of herself, but now she leads naturally, without any hesitation or concern over what people think of her. She has to labor to breath if she does anything more difficult than walk at a normal pace, but that doesn't stop her from doing every ounce of work she can, and then some.
She's tougher than I am. I know that now. If my being home can help in even the tiniest way, I'm going to keep doing it. Hell, right now I'm mostly just helping the others and being impressed at how much Jess can still do on her own.
I see it wearing her down, though she fights it. She's smart enough to pace herself but time and weariness aren't forgiving to the infirm. She'll keep going until she falls, because that's just who she is.
And I'll catch her, because that's who I am.