Thursday, March 19, 2009

Writhing with Germs

Above photo is the epilogue from the previous post. Q saying good night to the finally sleeping Noodle. She fell off that mattress an hour later, without waking up, and was put to bed in her crib. The light of the room is nearly entirely from the camera's flash.

My parents came to visit this past Saturday. This is, for me, always anticipated with excitement and a small sense of dread. I'm going to have to clean. It never fails that this dread keeps me anxious with little productivity until approximately one minute after they arrive. Then we finish what is absolutely crucial (groceries, bed linens) with no worries and forget about all the other grime encrusted parts of my house until their next visit.

Saturday started out well. I got up before the kids woke up and got in a run. But when I returned upstairs for a shower, Q wailed from my spot in my bed, which I had finally yielded to him at 6 am. "I can't open my eye!"

I have inherited my mother's lack of sympathy for illness. Most of the time, I figure that the kid is scamming me. This particular complaint (combined with the fact that he joined us in the middle of the night claiming something was in his eye and I told him that if he shut his eye, his eye would wash it clean) got my attention. I got a wet wash cloth and gently wiped his eye. Funny, but when you see pink eye, it's pretty obvious.

Since Q is riddled with contagion, he is bumped out of his seat for the grandparent pick-up in favor of Noodle. She is good as gold. At lunch, she blatantly flirts with her grandfather and charms everyone with her enthusiasm for noodles with red sauce.

We return home to find Q in his jammies still. I don't get too uptight, although if my husband's parents were coming to visit, I would definitely have the kids out of their jammies by 2:30 pm. The mystery becomes clear when I eventually locate J, sprawled on our bed, close to drooling. It turns out he has lost all track of time while busy fighting a stomach virus. He had bribed Q with one video before passing into the land of misery, and Q had gone feral, without food other than the ample droppings from the kitchen floor. To keep himself busy, he produced this masterpiece in the newly usable, and quite close to finished, downstairs bathroom:

But despite the conjunctivitis and stomach flu and my mother's allergies to cats, the visit went very well. We took a trip on Amtrak to the Mystic Aquarium.

(A repeat of one of Q's absolute favorite adventures ever.)

Noodle wandered happily around saying, "Baby fish! Baby fish! Baby fish!"

Sadly, Noodle is incapable of handling a train ride, plus a trip to the aquarium, without dissolving into hysterics. She had to be removed from a closet sized restaurant when other patrons began suffering from hearing loss.

After Grandma got to watch Noodle's music class on Wednesday, we returned the grandparents to Florida where we got them.

Today, through no fault of the grandparents or themselves, the kids are wiped out and Q is coughing badly. Later in the morning he was diagnosed with an ear infection that I am sure my mother will nod her head with sage recognition, having commented that, "Q just isn't himself."

But before breakfast, I doctored them both with honey and made 'honey tea' from honey and warm water just for Q.

I told him that his honey tea was on the table (he's spending inordinate amounts of time admiring the new bathroom). Sitting down next to Noodle, she informs me in her slow, pausing, language. "I - like - hun-ee - tee."

I begin eating my oatmeal.

She repeats herself: "I - like - hun-ee - tee."

I ignore her hint.

Once again, "I - like - hun-ee - tee."

I try the golden oldie, distraction. "Oh, Noodle! Do you have oatmeal this morning?"

She looks at me reprovingly. "Talkin - 'bout - hun-ee - tee."

Friday, March 13, 2009

Noodle is sad tonight

Q is out at a play (his first real evening play!) with J. And Noodle, while happy to play with Em instead, is now very, very sad. Sobbing in bed and screaming sad. Exhausted, but heartbroken and not wanting to even try to sleep sad.

Poor Noodle.

Later: I finally persuaded her to fall asleep on a mattress next to Q's bed...

Thursday, March 12, 2009

You know there's a problem...

When you get to Preschool and one of the teachers pulls you inside, holding a backpack, but no Q. "Q's mom? Q is in the nurse's office..."

Evidently Q was wrestling with another child, I hope playfully, when they rolled off the wood chips onto the black top, where Q's head made contact. Loud enough that Miss K heard it. When she asked if she could take a look under his coat's hood, the formerly stoic Q, burst into tears.

When I got there, not long after, Q was in freeze out mode. He'll answer some questions, but only the ones he deems necessary. "What happened?" is not one of them. "Does it hurt?" is always answered with 'no.'

It's funny to me that this is Q's second remarkable head injury at preschool. Third if we count when Miss Wendy hit him in the face with a wiffle ball. In normal home life, injuries are pretty rare. Does he just play harder at preschool? The fact that I find it unusual that my kid has been to the nurse's office 2 times in 2 years perhaps indicates how few injuries we've had to endure.

I don't like to overreact, and Q hates to be messed with. So instead of going to the pediatrician's office right away, we opt to go home, have our scheduled playdate, and see how much blood keeps coming.

Well, at bath time (not the one pictured above, but they all basically look like that), I took a wash cloth and gently checked out the injury with just warm water. Oozy. I decide to call the pediatrician's office before they close. I meant to only ask advice, but they tell me to bring him right in. Armed with jammies, firefighter boots, and bedtime books, we enter the office to find the place deserted. We're seen right away and Quinn gets what they call a 'Glue-it' - basically a bit of something like glue that seals the injury shut. Like stitches, without any. Nifty. Q is good as gold. He moves back into freeze out mode, but cooperates.

On the way home, he asks me, "Mom, why do they ring the bell and say, 'All hands on deck!' at Trader Joe's?"

More and more we see a bond between the kids that we're just in awe of. Tuesday night we settled in to read bedtime stories. Q snuggles under the covers and says to Noodle, "Noodle, do you want to sit here next to me?" Ohhhh yes. She ditches her usual throne (the lap of the reader) and joins Q under the covers.