I will warn you all now, before you get too into this post, that it may be long. Very long, since I plan on trying to cover everything. So, read on at your own risk.
First, a very late Happy Birthday to Lyss, who turned eight last Tuesday. I'd planned on a birthday post, and still may put something up, but Tuesday was when Flu Bug decided to stop by unannounced for a long and unwelcome visit. Fortunately (for her) Alyssa didn't get sick until Weds. night, so her day was still very enjoyable. Eight was the year of Hannah Montana and High School Musical, a definite sign that she is growing up. A far cry from the Bear in the Big Blue House first birthday she had. I never thought I'd miss Bear, but I do. He was a good guy, a lumbering fuzzy sweetness that owned our house for almost three years, back in the day. I may buy a couple DVD's of Bear just so Taylor can have the Blue House experience. There was something so wholesome about it that is so lacking in a lot of what's on today. And Bear wasn't a jackass. He never talked to the kids like they were morons... or like he was. Ya know?
But, back to Flu Bug. Good ole FB hit Jake first, and he missed all the fun stuff at school last week. Egg hunts, treats, etc. He was pretty down about it, but no matter what the kid wants, you can't send him to school when he's been up 3/4 of the night decorating everything in sight with the contents of his stomach. Not a good aim, Jake. That's the one thing with him you can count on- you won't have to clean up the toilet when he misses it, because he never makes it that far. You will, however, be doing laundry at three in the morning, cleaning the bedroom floor and tossing him in the tub. Fun stuff. Fun. Stuff.
The next few days are a haze of laundry, Lysol and wondering what the hell we did to deserve it all. Seriously- we all got sick. Weds night started with Alyssa at a little after midnight, with me running right behind. We have one bathroom, so by three in the morning it was one in the bathroom, two hovered with plastic bags, and Taylor sleeping right through it all. The first, and only time she has ever slept through the night. A huge part of me was so thankful she did because I honestly don't know how I'd have taken care of her at that point- I could barely stand and the thought of her waking up and me having to lift her at all was in the back of my mind, and man it was a scary thought. Jim came home in the morning and I was all "Thank God you're here..." Which he didn't even hear, as he collapsed on the bed, saying he'd been puking at work. I managed a stream of colorful words at that and collapsed again. No one moved much that day, that's for sure.
And then it got scary, because Taylor started that afternoon. She wasn't fevered, crying or acting out of sorts, but she threw up a couple of times. Nothing, and I do mean nothing, could have had me forcing myself up and around any more than that. Alyssa and Jake weren't vomiting at that point (it always seems to hit them at night, then subside through the day) and they're capable of helping themselves to a snack, drink, etc., if they're capable of being up and playing some.
All in all, everyone had the flu. All of us threw up, a couple of us had other bathroom issues, and poor Taylor ended up with a diaper rash from pooping so much. Vaseline has been her best friend- a lifesaver! It coats without stinging, which is more than a diaper rash cream seems to do. No one truly slept in three days and the washer-dryer were on 24-7. Jim still has a cold. Alyssa is still picking at food. I'm pumping my bloodstream with more coffee than normal just to disinfect and clean like a crazy woman. Jake and Taylor are none the worse for wear, and neither of them really were, even when they were sick- one thing I can say about my kids, they're all troopers. It takes one hell of a bug to get them down for the count, and I think Lyss and Jake have been in bed not moving around sick maybe three times in their entire lives. Him with pneumonia once when he was three, ear infections and upper respiratory when he was one. Her with strep-tonsillitis in preschool, kindergarten and last year. I think they get that from my father.
Which leads me to him. For a little background, my dad is 81 years old. I was born when he was 53. Yes, I was a surprise baby. But, throughout my life, my father has managed to overcome some pretty tough medical issues. He has had several heart attacks, a quadruple bypass, prostate cancer, colon cancer, and a severe illness a couple years ago due to his gall bladder bursting without his knowledge. This led to various procedures that took until recently to actually finish up, including stints, draining, infection, surgeries, etc. It's been a long road, and before the last operation, late last year, he had to have a defibrillator. All of these have been very risky procedures and they lost him on the table a few times during the first operation for the gall bladder. Needless to say, my father is an extremely strong man. Always has been. He's as stubborn and bullheaded as they come, and I think he fights off illness with sheer force of will.
But he is sick again, and they are running tests. We don't know yet what's happening, if anything, but each time is a little harder, for everyone. Because he is getting older and his body is less and less likely to bounce back. And I'm certain he is tired, because everyone gets tired of fighting sometimes. Especially when it's a constant barrage of doctors, tests, machinery and diagnoses that are never quite right, or take care of the whole issue. I'll post more about this when I know more, but for now, everyone's thoughts and /or prayers would be greatly appreciated.
Moving on, away from illness and hard thoughts. The house is still taking shape, but we've done some more cosmetic touches here and there, before and after the flu, that are making a world of difference. Replacing a shower curtain really does redo an entire bathroom, especially a small one. Adding a bath mat does, too, especially when the color goes with other things you have around the house to decorate with that just don't fit anywhere else anymore. Instantly, you have a brand new bathroom. Which actually looks pretty... and even has a theme! Yup, I am actually easy to please with stuff. When it seems to fall into place without even thinking about it, because the whole bathroom was a fluke. Seriously. It may look planned, but nope. We've also added a new doorknob, and fixed the dryer filter, which was killing us slowly. It was taking all day to dry a load of clothes, and sometimes even then it wasn't finished. I'm now completely caught up on the laundry, and can do up to eight loads a day if need be. Yes, we had that much to do, we were having to wash 3-5 items at a time for a while there. Add to it the last week of washing and re-washing bed linens, pj's, etc., it was a vicious laundry cycle.
So, that's what's been happening at mi casa these days. It's been a long winter, all the way around. But today- today the sun is out, the sky is blue and the kids are healthy, back to school.... and I am slowly regaining the small portion of sanity I am allowed to have. I will post some pics of Easter and the b-day stuff when I finally upload the eight hundred million pictures on my poor camera.
I hope everyone has been healthy and happy, and those of you who celebrated Easter had a wonderful day, be it a spiritual one of a chocolate fest. : ) For me, I missed my paczki this year- I love me some custard filled paczki and could not find it. : ( Ah well, the strawberry did ok... heehee.
So, run out and enjoy some sunshine if you have it! I'm off to prepare for the kid invasion that is after school. And the begging for more... please more... candy from the baskets.