My children returned home yesterday at about eight o’clock, courtesy of my friend Lisa who was brave enough to drive all the way from Utah with double her usual amount of kids in the car. Impressive, no?
Gabe threw up all over his car seat when he was less than a mile from home, but seemed ok, albeit a bit smelly. Within minutes of their arrival, I had taken Jonas’ temperature (101.6), heard him cough and sent him out the door to the ER where he was diagnosed with double pneumonia. At 11:40, about the time Chris left the hospital with Jonas, Gabe started throwing up again and spiked a fever just shy of 104 degrees. I am not supposed to be lifting 35lbs of listless toddler, per hysterectomy recovery rules, but when he throws up all over himself and is too weak to voluntarily get out of his puddle of vomit- what do you do? I gently lifted him out of the mess to a clean swath of floor, and visualized positive outcomes where no internal stitches came undone. I did this three times before Chris got home.
Chris got home about thirty minutes later, after I had tried to get Gabe to keep down Gatorade and Motrin (not happening), and after a prayer, Chris put Gabe in the car and went back to the ER. Gabe has a bad ear infection and some viral thing that causes vomit. They got home sometime around three am. Chris was supposed to work all weekend; his shift started in a mere three hours from then, so I was about having a panic attack. Luckily, he managed to get out of it so he could stay home and deal with his health-challenged family.
Between the sleepy, feverish crying and the soul shaking hacking, I woke up quite a few times last night. The finale to that endless chorus of needs was definitely Miss Margaret at 6:30 am. Maggie is known in our family as being the last person to voluntarily get out of bed in the morning. She is an early to bed, late to rise kind of person. Today, however, she was the very first person awake and she was so excited about waking up before everyone else that she came and woke me up so she could share her joy. I. Kid. You. Not. Chica has clearly missed the entire point of being the early bird, which is that you have the whole, quiet house to yourself. She could have raided the Easter candy and stuffed herself silly while playing video games, but nooo, she has to wake me up. To brag.
Over the past few days of alternatively being excited to see my children and freaked out having to try to care for them again, I kept going over this ridiculous scenario in which I just didn’t call any of the kind individuals who had volunteered to help out. I would soldier on, the very model of self sufficiency, making due and being JUST. FINE. OKAY? I would do this because I don’t like to ask for help, and I don’t like feeling needy and even though I am well aware that we all have times when we need to be the helpee and not the helper and people who give help get blessings and blah-blah-feel good-blah. . . (go ahead and roll your eyes at me, I know you want to).
Kind of funny that within just a few hours of getting my kids back that I get a harsh reminder that I am healed enough to take care of approximately just me and absolutely no one else, isn’t it? Running on about five hours of heavily interrupted sleep makes things hurt more and makes me more impatient and snappish in general, and so I have been sore, cranky and emotionally volatile all day. One day of in your face, real life motherhood, and people, I’m toast. I’m dead on my feet. I’m completely wiped out and worthless.
And humbled enough to ask for the help I now fully realize I will need if I expect to survive the next month. Ugh.
If you would like to help me by praying that these kids get hurry up and get healthy, and that Gabe will continue to sleep in his own bed (Gabe has put himself to bed in his own bed two nights in a row people- HOLY COW- this is a certifiable miracle), that would be just great.