I will finish the Duck Lips Tale and accompany it with a photo. When I feel like it. The terrible thing about me having my own blog is that I can just decide to shelve something and your only recourse is to dump me and stop reading. Some of you have chosen this. Some of you will choose this in the future. But should you find my attitude one notch above deplorable –should you choose to tolerate me– you’ll see that duck photo soon enough. I’ll reward you with images that will cause you to look away in horror and certainly will keep you up at night. And the ending is better than the beginning.
But for now, I will explain where I am this moment in time. I am sitting next to the most mischievous 3 year old I’ve ever known. She is quiet, but terribly destructive. She will not make a sound as she reaches her toe over my keyboard, hits a key with her big fat toe, and deletes what I’ve been typing. She is completely silent while opening and closing and ruining forever my CD drive. She is impossible. Impossible to manage. Impossible to punish. Impossible not to love.
She started this whole mess on Friday. Our first stomach virus since May 2009. For the math challenged, that’s just under 2 years without an official stomach virus. If there were a Guinness Book of Miracles, this two year period of Vomit Free Living would be documented within its pages. For years, we caught every germ in the tri-county area. We duct taped ourselves and stood near people with germs and kept our mouths wide open just to make sure no germ passed us by. One friend named us the Vom Snapps. It was bad.
And then the cloud lifted.
Now it is back. We’ve been at the beach with Grammy, and were enjoying ourselves immensely. On Friday, while we were sitting by the Gulf of Mexico building sand castles, Snugmonk came over to me, wrapped herself in a towel, and laid face-down in my lap. She did not lift her head for 40 minutes. I carried her up to the condo. She was feverish. Between naps, she started in with some stomach problems. Though it is my nature to describe every last detail, I think I will leave some gaps in this part of the story. You’re welcome.
I stayed in that evening with SnuggleGerms from the seafood dinner I had been thinking about for 2 days. We had been eating the dregs of my refrigerator back in town and I was ready for some real food. I got mine to-go.
We came home yesterday. GermMonkey seemed a tad better, but not well. We put the kids to bed on time. I did not go to bed on time. At 2:33 a.m., AG woke me up (he said he had already tried once, unsuccessfully) and told me Mamasboy was throwing up. At that point, I hopped out of bed frantically and started looking for my shorts. I couldn’t find my shorts anywhere. I opened every drawer, muttered lots of unintelligible things, and finally found them about 7 minutes later. Ridiculous. I got to Mamasboy as fast as I could, turned the light on, and assessed the damage. It was dense, but confined to one area of his bumper pad.
(Now, I know what your next question is. Bumper Pad? Isn’t he 7? Yes, yes he is. But he has been rubbing his face on this mangy textile for 7 years. It’s his pillow. His woobie. His blankie. His bud. I have bigger fish to fry so I haven’t fried this one yet. So yes, he sleeps with a bumper pad and yes, that bumper pad was buried under his dinner.)
So the problem was contained. And then my shorts-wearing self tried to pick it up to clean it. In the process, I slung bacterial devastation all over every surface imaginable. Even now, as I type this, I don’t know how I managed to bungle this so badly. My boys watched in horror as I destroyed their bedroom. The next 30 minutes were all about cleaning that up. And changing sheets. And doing laundry. And cursing myself in languages they could not understand or repeat.
It was almost 4 when I fell asleep on the boys’ floor. I sat up many times over the next 2 hours, helping the boy feel less alone while he was desperately ill.
When I got up this morning at 7, it was obvious that at least me, Mamasboy, and Snugglepants were staying in from church. Beloved didn’t seem quite right, so I opted to keep her in also. AG went on with the gang. As the morning proceeded on, it became unquestionably clear that I had made an error in judgment. Beloved was perfectly fit for church and I was perfectly unfit for her energy level. I paid for this mistake at least 22 times over the next several hours. Mamasboy didn’t emerge from his cave until 11:20, making this the longest any child of mine has ever slept. As I type, he is sleeping again.
AG is now running a fever. And Beloved is at church. Ha.
And while no one likes the stomach junk, it is but a fraction of a fraction of a drop in a bucket compared to people all over the south who suffered devastation and damage and even death from the scariest storms on earth. I’ve never seen or heard or been even close to a tornado. I pray I never am. I am so sorry for those who are suffering. My mom has a friend who is blogging about the experience from the Hunstville, AL area. They don’t have power, but they still have a house. They were traumatized terribly, but they are safe, along with all the kids and grandkids. Her photos and writing really hit home with me. So if you want to put yourself in Alabama on Wednesday, April 27, click here. Pray for all of these people. For so many people, this day ripped everything they had known and created a new normal that they never would have chosen. I pray that God will help each of them rebuild and find strength they did not know possible.