I no longer know when one illness begins and another ends. In the last month I had a cold, Zach, Rowan, and I have all had a stomach bug, Lorelei had a high fever, both kids got pink eye, Rowan had an ear infection, Rowan got another stomach bug, Zach got pink eye, Lorelei threw up, and this morning Zach and I both woke up with sore throats.
I’m estimating that we have not had longer than 36 hours relatively symptom-free since well before Christmas. Last weekend Rowan puked on. my. mouth. During a snowstorm.
Thursday, after five days stuck inside, Lorelei was finally able to go back to school. Rowan had gone back on Wednesday. I had gone back to work Tuesday afternoon. When it snows in the south, life as we know it shuts down. We were all stir crazy. Thursday was Famous Person Day at school so Lorelei dressed up as Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I threw together this quick meme, which has done well.
I got to school to pick her up and the afterschool teacher said she was lying down. I found her, asleep in her RBG outfit. She seemed fine later, so we let her go to school the next day, only to get a call saying she had thrown up.
It is almost funny. Unfortunately, it’s also extremely isolating. Sometimes, I think Lorelei got to do all these fun things Rowan has not and then I realize that it’s because Lorelei was rarely sick.
I had a good friend coming to stay the night with us and was so sad. My friend pointed out that she is a 2nd-grade teacher and has cleaned up vomit at least four times in the last week, so she was willing to brave the plague-house and come see us. It was something I did not realize how much I needed until she arrived.
These days it is impossible to make plans. Anytime we get together with friends I feel edgy, wondering what sorts of germs we are spreading around the place. Going to indoor playgrounds and museums leaves me wondering what bugs we are picking up.
Throughout all of this, I have been writing.
I’ve been trying to remember my 2017 mantra of, “less,” and did actually say no to one flattering offer for a content/advertising exchange.
I wrote a light-hearted and over-the-top sarcastic piece for Reality Moms about the Puppy Surprise Christmas of 2016 called Puppy Surprise is Everything Wrong With Maternity Care in America. Purposeful overthinking and satirical seriousness. The Facebook page Quirky Momma picked it up and the comments were… interesting.
There is a larger-than-I-would-like portion of the world that lacks a sarcasm detector or humor chip. These are the people that take everything I say literally, at face value, and seriously. These folks get seriously angry at me for taking something like a toy so seriously. Except… I was never serious in the first place. And when called out the inevitably say that I just was not funny, obviously.
I asked if I should offer a stuffed dog a placenta smoothie and mesh panties. Mesh. Panties. And people took me seriously.
Operation “get into a magazine” is in full swing. I’m collecting lifestyle/lit/women’s magazines and pouring over them to try to see where my work might be a decent fit. It’s tough since I luckily do not have many harrowing tales and there are only so many ways I can write the story of Rowan’s birth. It will sharpen my ability to write details and narrative if nothing else.
I suppose that if I burn my house down to kill all the germs that I could write some pretty compelling copy from my jail cell….