By Genevieve Petrillo
Sara coughed. Her throat felt like the sand at the beach on a hot day - dry and burning. Her head and her eyes felt the same.
Mom took her to see Dr. William.
He pressed Sara’s tongue down with a stick and looked far into her mouth.
“Striped Throat,” the doctor said.
Most of the time, Sara loved stripes. Not this time. She imagined her sick throat -back behind her tongue, like a deep red cave with dark lines on the walls. Bad stripes.
They went to the drugstore with medicine notes from the doctor. Everyone looked sadly at Sara.
“I have Striped Throat,” she said.
Mom took the bag of medicine and they headed home.
“PJ’s on and straight into bed,” Mom said.
Sara didn’t argue. She opened her dresser drawer and suddenly thought of a way to fight the Striped Throat. She needed lots and lots of good stripes. She changed into her red and white striped pajamas. Mom gave her a spoonful of yummy pink medicine and tucked her in with her orange striped monkey. She kissed Sara’s hair.
“You’ll feel better soon,” she whispered.
It was dark when she woke up. She looked out her bedroom window at the striped moon in the striped sky. Good stripes made by her window blinds.
Mom came in wearing her fuzzy robe. Pretty pink stripes. Sara sipped some water and Mom went to make her a cup of tea.
“Try to sleep some more, Sweet Pea,” Mom said. “You’ll feel better in the morning.”
When Sara woke up, she didn’t feel hot and dry anymore. She felt hot and sweaty. Mom changed her bed and put on yellow, striped sheets. She gave Sara more medicine. Sara put on shorts and a striped T-shirt. She lay down with her green striped monkey and had some toast and juice.
Dad came in and they read Counting Crocodiles. Sara counted a lot of crocs, even some that were hiding underwater. Then she slept some more. After lunch, Sara colored a picture of a striped pig and a striped barn. Mom laughed, and then she coughed.
Sara felt well enough to eat dinner in the kitchen. She and Dad ate chicken and baked potatoes. Mom had tea and toast. Dad cleaned up and Mom fell asleep on the couch.
Dad touched his cheek against Mom’s forehead.
“I think we’ll take Mom to the doctor tomorrow,” he said.
“Striped Throat?” Sara asked.
Sara went to her room and brought out her striped blanket and striped monkey.
She covered Mom gently, tucked the monkey beside her, and kissed her hair.
“Good stripes,” she whispered. “You’ll feel better soon.”