We’ve been hammered around here lately – pneumonia, a broken arm, miserable weather and the start of our kids’ insane new sports schedule.
As we all know, moms aren’t allowed to get sick, or maybe my obsessive hand-washing and frantic hand waving gestures whenever someone coughed their infectious germs right in my face actually did the trick. Whatever the reason, I got stuck running this pneumonia-and-broken-bone-ridden show solo, after my poor husband wound up sicker than he’s been probably his entire life.
I won’t lie – things got a little dicey.
It all started with the three year old and a low-grade fever. Ibuprofen, a few popsicles, some movie time on the sofa, no big deal. She was hot and subdued for maybe 48 hours, and then she started to cough. Not the barking croup cough, not especially wet. Just a dry cough that we started to hear more and more.
But with no other symptoms, I figured it was just a cold and let it ride for about a week. And then she came into our room around 2 am with the kind of Darth Vader-breathing that had us switching on a light to look her over. We’ve had a handful of middle-of-the-night ER dashes for croupy kids, and we knew where to look to make sure her breathing wasn’t an issue. She seemed fine, so we conked out and hit the doctor’s office in the morning.
After a check up and a chest x-ray, we had the diagnosis – walking freaking pneumonia. She started the antibiotics, and then the party really got started, when she had an allergic reaction to her medicine and broke out in head-to-toe hives on Easter Sunday.
At the pediatric after-hours, the doctor told me we had bigger fish to fry, that her oxygen count was low – ?! – and he’d be sending us home with a nebulizer to use every six hours around the clock, plus some new antibiotics.
Cut to Tuesday, when the eight year old starts coughing and complaining of chest pain. Back to the doc we go, for a second confirmed case of this illness that was really starting to irritate me.
But the girls were both on meds and starting to perk up, we no longer needed to use the breathing treatment on the little one, and our mini getaway to Lake Tahoe was almost here. I thought we had turned a corner.
And then my husband starting coughing. We debated until the morning of our little trip, but he decided he felt decent enough to just load up on ibuprofen and tough it out.
It was a blast, but, you know, probably not the smartest move in retrospect. Wild guess on what that chest x-ray showed the following week!
Like every couple, I’m sure, we have a routine when it comes to managing kids and work and household stuff and our life together in general. And maybe I just never thought about it, but I didn’t realize how much he does around here – until he stopped doing it.
I knew he was feeling sick, but it didn’t really register how crappy he felt until I watched him laying so listlessly on the sofa. It’s just not something he ever does. He kept apologizing, and I kept telling him to just sleep and get better.
And then I worked my butt off. I typically navigate everything solo until about 5 pm, so that wasn’t anything new, but managing the evening rush all by myself suuuucked. In addition to the usual karate and homework and dinner and bath time and ohmigod-go-to-bed stuff – which we usually handle with a divide-and-conquer approach – we had the added excitement of a trip to urgent care for a broken wrist and a full arm cast, courtesy of a cartwheel gone dreadfully wrong.
Oh, and then baseball started, on the same night as a brisk spring storm, complete with chilly temperatures and driving wind. My husband, from his spot on the couch, blew up my phone with inquires about pitching machine speeds and requests for videos from different angles so he could see if our kiddo was too far from home plate at bat. I know how much it upset him to miss our son’s first-ever baseball game, so I humored the guy with photos and videos and FaceTime.
Baseball feels pretty much constant, with two games in as many days already, and the oldest had two soccer games jammed in over the last few days too. So lots of driving, and lots of videos and pics and text messages updates to the guy on the couch.
School and sports and doctor’s offices aside, I also ended up with a bunch of work falling from the sky and straight into my lap over the last few weeks. Yes! And also, no! Not now!
The good news is that the boys stayed healthy, the girls are all better, the broken arm is at least bedazzled and appropriately graffitied, and my husband is still tired from that romp with pneumonia but definitely on the mend. Pretty soon, he’ll be back to shouldering his half of this crazy life we share, and I can’t wait.
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