Wednesday, March 20, 2013

I Need to Work on My Exorcism Skills

Remember on Thursday when I posted about declaring our house germ free?

This is kind of how it played out...

Me: Germs be gone! Scram! We're done!


No sooner than I hit "publish", Anna was complaining that her ear was hurting. If there's one area of parenting that I feel like maybe I need to step up my game (one area? ha ha. more like 100 areas, but let's not even start with that today.) it's in the part where I react to injuries and sickness. I'm pretty laid back when it comes to that stuff and I usually brush most things off with a "oh, you're fine, let me kiss it". I think a lot of that attitude comes from teaching and coaching - seventh graders are reaalllly good at faking illness (or think they are, at least) to get out of doing things like take tests or run laps. So when Anna said her ear hurt, we gave her some Tylenol and went about our day. On Friday she never mentioned it, so I figured it had been a headache and forgot about it. By Saturday afternoon, however, she was saying it hurt again, and this time it was clear to see she was feeling miserable. No appetite, glassy eyes, just generally out of it, so Mike and I decided to swing by the pediatric urgent care on our way home from swim lessons. (See? My kid complains of her ear hurting and I'm all, "shake it off! get in the pool!" Mother of the Year, for sure.) And then I started feeling really bad because in both the waiting room and in the examination room she laid her head in my lap and fell asleep - which never happens. And then I started feeling horrible when the nurse asks me if she's been running a temperature, and just when I'm like, "No, not that I know of," she slides the thermometer across Anna's forehead and shows me the reading: 103.4. Raging fever and ear infection. Like I said, Mother of the Year.

Antibiotics and Tylenol began working their magic right away, enough that Anna could go to a birthday party that evening, but just to be sure we didn't get any slick ideas about getting healthy again, the Universe threw another wrench in our get well plans. And that is how our St. Patrick's Day was spent like many more before it - cleaning up vomit. Except instead of our drunk selves drunk college kids, it was our sweet girl, having a bad reaction to the taste of the Tylenol. (I need to give a major shout out to Mike here. I was all, "Ahh! Puke! She's puking! Ahh!" while he's just calmly holding Anna's hair out of her face and rubbing her back as she spews all over him. He was awesome and it was reason number 4,378 why he's a great dad.) We did manage to make the trip to see my parents, although in hindsight we probably should have just stayed home.

Sacked out at Mema and Grandpa's.

So I guess I learned a few things this weekend. First, don't tempt the health gods with declarations of sickness-free households. Second, I chose well in my husband, particularly when it comes to dealing with the bodily fluids of our children. And last, and probably the most important, I need to do a better job of listening to my kid when she tells me something is wrong.


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