02 February 2007


So, where have I been?

Nursing a feverish Bird.

Daycare called on Monday to report that her fever was 103. Tuesday she was off to the doctor with A, and Wednesday she hovered around 100 all day and slept and snuggled, and Thursday started to look like she was on the mend, until I discovered a pinpoint-y rash all over her little tummy and neck.

Turns out it's probably a reaction to the MMR vaccine, or a virus she picked up when we went in to get it last Friday. At least it wasn't the chickenpox. And at least she's feeling better. High fevers scare the shit out of me, because I start thinking about Little House on the Prairie, and how somebody always had some kind of dramatically high fever and had to get in an ice bath and they always died or almost died.

Or lost their hearing. Or was it her sight? It was her sight. Mary was blind.* Because of a fever, I think. I used to have a patient who went deaf as a child as a result of a high fever. She was wild and crazy, and I once spend a solid six hours with her in the emergency room waiting area after she'd downed a bottle of calamine lotion because her face was itchy.

(The hospital I speak of is a part of Prestigious Private University, and offered 18 different language translation options in the ER, but NO American Sign Language. Which wouldn't have mattered anyway because this person's signs were for the most part all her own made-up gestures, and when we finally made it to the desk to sign forms, she drew huge hearts all over the pages and refused to write anything except "I Love Lucy." But still. No ASL. Screw you, Deaf people! And especially you, deaf and crazy people! But bring on the Turkish interpreters!)

Anyway, so Mary Ingalls was blind, not deaf. And the high fevers on the Prairie are one of the many reasons I do not care for "pioneer"-type stories. There you have it.

In any case, I've hardly been in my office at all this week. How do people do it? How do moms without ridiculously flexible work situations (like mine, fortunately) do this? I feel guilty for neglecting my job when I stay home with Bird (though she is my most important job, make no mistake), and then guilty when I come to work and leave my still-clingy Bird at daycare. With all this guilt, I might as well just suck it up and convert to Catholicism. At least my father-in-law would be happy.

This schedule suits me, though-- one and a half days in the office, about four hours of freelance work during naptimes and after bedtime. I could get used to this. I mean, I wish I could get used to this. For this short week, I felt like my time was allotted in line with my priorities.

I remember last year at this time, working at my strangely rigid non-job (where I did literally absolutely nothing and my suspicion is that I was not the only one by a long shot, but everyone took it all very seriously), when Bird first started daycare and got sick and then sicker, mended and then sicker, after being thrown into the cesspool Baby Warehouse. We lost so much sleep, and I missed so much work. I remember being called into one of the partners' offices to be told that "You have used all of your personal days, and any time you take to care for Bird from this point forward will be unpaid." And I remember feeling so fucking DOOMED by the whole thing, because I sure as shit wasn't going to let such a meaningless job make me less of a mother than it already had, but at the same time, I felt like I had crossed some kind of line, was pushing my luck with my bosses. Doomed and Damned. I cried over that.

Today our city essentially shut down, due to about an inch (you heard me) of snow. But I am a Hoosier! I'm used to this shit, you wussy middle Tennesseans! SUCK IT UP! BWAH!!

Stinky Drink
Oh, and it's finally happened... someone brought flavored coffee into the office. It stinks like charred Kahlua, and I won't be drinking any. In fact, I wish I didn't have to breathe it. Like my grandpa once said, "Tastes like coffee with perfume in it."

He washes darks with lights, but he's still the Greatest
This morning, A. went out to scrape off the cars while Bird and I ate cheerios and watched Teletubbies (which is so bizarre, but I know you know that) in our jammies. Snow day, remember? I looked out the front window to find him gloveless, having a snowball fight with our neighbor kid who was out of school with no kids around to play with. He may be an Alfani man, but that husband of mine has a heart of gold. And really, really cold hands.

*Edited to Add: Mary did not go blind due to fever.


Erica said...

How dare you complain about the 1"-of-snow-freak-out in middle Tennessee when you got the day off of work from it! I am ashamed of you.

Ma Turner said...

The episode of Little House I remember best is the one where Ma was all alone (wee bairn and Pa traveling, I suspect), she cut her leg somehow, got some sort of nasty infection, spiked a scary, hallucinatory fever, and finally had to cauterize her own festering leg wound with a piping hot poker from the fire. Now that's good TV.

MrsFortune said...

Wow, that is some wacky train of thought you have going there! I do that kind of stuff all the time. I knew I loved you for some reason. :-)

Snow day... now that makes me think of that one book, where the kid is in the red snowsuit... can't remember the auther, but I know the kid wasn't blind, due to fever or any other reason. :)