We are now 14 days past when Monkey first fell to the flu, and a week past Otto’s fall (Chickadee fell inbetween the two of them). I’m officially calling this THE YEAR I AVOIDED GETTING THE FLU. Every day for the last two weeks I’ve woken up every morning and laid in bed, tensed with apprehension, doing a quick body inventory. Do I feel hot? Does my head hurt? Is that something weird? I’ve certainly not felt my very best the last couple of weeks, but other than feeling a little rundown (which, HEY, I’m sure that has nothing to do with recent events at all!), it appears my nefarious plan of dousing myself in hand sanitizer fifteen times a day actually worked.
Christmas—such as it will be, this year, anyway—can now commence.
Apparently that means I can continue trying to work while the kids wander into my office fifty times a day and I try to explain that I need to work, I’m sorry, please find something to do, please go pester Otto, hey I bet there’s something good on TV right now, etc. It doesn’t really feel like the most wonderful time of the year. I am only a little bit bitter that the kids were supposed to be gone THIS week (while I’m still working) but now instead we won’t have them NEXT week when I can relax a little.
It feels like a bit of suspended animation, this week, while I work, the kids wander around, and we tread water, waiting for the answers we hope will be coming in January.
Several of you have asked how Monkey is doing, and the short answer is that he’s good. We’ve not had another seizure episode. He’s not running a fever. Most of the time he seems relatively content, other than wanting to be in my office interrupting me and asking whyyyyyyy he can’t. He had a friend over for a while yesterday and lit up and ran around in a way I haven’t seen for longer than I care to admit.
The long answer is that I am hopeful, now that we have this ENT who seems to be on to something, and we’ve gone and had every blood test under the sun so hopefully anything missed so far may be revealed. Sure. I think we’re closer to answers. But Monkey is still not himself. It has become usual for him to disappear in the early evening, and when it occurs to us that we haven’t seen or heard him for a while, one of us goes looking, only to discover he’s put himself to bed and is out cold. It’s happened so many times, now, that it’s become something of a joke.
[Monkey’s explanation: “I just go into my room to do something and I get a little cold? So I figure crawling into bed for a minute will warm me up? And then it’s morning! I think you better give me the goodnight kisses I forgot to get last night, please.”]
His little body is still recovering from the flu, still fighting this mastoid infection he’s had for who knows how long, so extra sleep is a good thing. I’m trying not to get worked up about it.
The last couple of days he’s also wandered off in the middle of the day and taken a nap. Again; sleep is good. Sleep is healing.
But I worry.
Chickadee and Otto both have that lingering chesty cough that’s more annoying than anything else, and I keep cracking jokes about living in a TB ward, but I’m keeping an eye on both of them for signs of bronchitis. So far, so good.
We’re eating out a lot, because I had carefully planned for us to empty the fridge before we all left on our travels, and we didn’t leave but I haven’t quite managed to do thorough grocery shopping and meal planning, so—much to the children’s delight—’tis the season for pizza and tacos and “Good lord, you’re hungry AGAIN? I just fed you yesterday!”
Last night as we drove home from dinner the kids bickered in the backseat over who knows what, and it was on the tip of my tongue to admonish Chickadee for riling up her brother, because I could see he was getting wound up, and his tolerance for stress is even lower than usual (note: I know how he feels…), and before I could say anything, I had a sudden, clear vision of decorating the tree two years ago and how that was such a perfect example of how I wish my kids could be with each other all the time. I felt a pang of… I don’t even know what. Longing for things to be different, I guess.
“Well now you are just being DUMB!” insisted Chickadee. I could hear Monkey’s sharp intake of breath, a sign he was about to completely blow his cool. “Ish,” Chickie added. There was a pause, during which I suspect none of us breathed. “LEE!” she concluded. “You are being DUMBISHLY!”
Monkey burst into laughter, and rest of us couldn’t help following suit.
“That’s not a word,” I offered, as the kids cackled behind me. “But if it was, WHO would be the one acting dumbishly, here?”
The remainder of the drive was spent in a nerdtastic discussion of modifiers, parts of speech, and whether or not suffixes can be added to words at whim. There was plenty of giggling.
And I didn’t get the flu.
So we’re okay for now.