You know you've seen that woman. The lady in grocery store with a mystery stain (spit up) running down the front of her coat. The obviously ill children. The kids cough and drip snot. You think, "Why are those kids out?!" The mother looks dazed and rather oblivious. You judge, it just happens. Then you find yourself in close proximity as you have to get that can of olives she's zoned out next to and you smell it. One of those kids has left a big stink in the wake of their shopping cart, which is filled with a totally random assortment of purchases that does not seem to justify the excursion.That woman is me. Here is my story....
So, Thursday night/ Friday morning was probably our most intense night as parents. Two sick kids had us tag teaming it for a while, but then Eric had to tag out as he had a full day of work. So I found myself at 4:30 in the morning, a few 15 minutes of ZZZs under my belted bathrobe, with Cordelia reclining against me coughing and talking. I strained my ears, listening for the telltale wake-up sounds of Elise. When she awoke at 5am we went to the family room and just sat around in a total daze, the girls coughing and whining.
9am on the dot I called the pediatrician. I was pretty sure we were dealing with a virus, but I am no novice and I KNOW that it is fatal to make assumptions on a Friday. If you do that you end up in urgent care for 6 hours on Saturday. So we went in at 11am.
We entered the peditrician's office. I scanned the scene. I felt like we were in a germ zoo. So many snotty faces, coughing babies, tired parents. I made eye contact with a few of the other parents. We smiled, but not too friendly...it was the we're in this together, but stay away in case your kid gives my kid something else to be sick with smile.
We were called into the back room. Where my girls proceeded to act normally and not cough. Cordelia was particularly charming telling the doctor, as he listened to her chest, "I have all kinds of different coughs." She then showed him. She had to only tell him about coughing into the harmonica as, darn the luck, she'd forgotten it at home. He was amused, but still diagnosed bronchitis.
Elise was mellow as she was checked over, no bronchitis, only a virus. The good news, no antibiotics--- the bad news, there is little we can do to make her comfortable.
We paid a freakish amount and then headed to the store for Cordelia's meds. I cannot explain to you how exhausted we all were at this point. Just beyond tired. Somewhere around this time I noticed that I had been splashed with some spit-up and thought, "raindrop in the storm."The girls were holding up, just drippy, coughy and a little whiny. It was then that I smelled it, Elise had dropped a bomb. No problem for mothers who have it together. Instead...I had a flashback to the day before when I used the last of my wipes while we were at the store (and I will admit a bit of a receipt in my purse was used as well, it was a bad one). I hadn't refilled the wipes in the diaper bag. Ugh! Fine, I thought, just grab the meds and head home. No dice, the pharmacist informed me that there would be a few more minutes to wait. So... I went to grab a few odds and ends (and wipes) while I waited for the pharmacist. It was then, as I rolled those sick girls around the store that I realized how that woman becomes, that woman.
So, to rehash. Sick kids. Tired mother. Poopy diaper. No wipes.
Oh, and you probably want a moral to this story, unless you're French then this whole story is probably just obnoxiously American. So, a moral, let's see... probably something about not judging the lady in the store as you don't know the whole story...or something.
Anyway, today we are on the mend. The girls got more sleep. I got some sleep too. Noses are still running, coughing is still happening, but I think this illness has reached its zenith.