January 31, 2009

Sick Week

We've all been sick this week. First Lily, then Tucker, then Myk and finally, me. I thought (hoped against all reason) that I'd escape this nasty flu --after all, I was just getting over a mild cold from early in the previous week -- but, no. It's one thing to hover over and worry about the little ones coming down with high fevers and aches and coughs -- quite another to be that pathetic one yourself, molding permanent impressions of your prone shape into the sofa. And truth be told, yes, I'd always rather it was me that got sick, if it could somehow spare the kids from looking so limp and sad. But still. We're all quite done with being trapped in the house and feeling weak and spindly, but this bug is not quite ready to turn us loose yet into the sunshine. So in the house we remain -- shuffling from room to couch to bed and back, all of us coughing and hacking. Charming!

Oh, what a difference a week makes. Last Saturday, we were free of the children, who were spending the weekend at my mother's place. I knew in my heart that it was a bad idea to shuttle them off to Whittier -- my sister (who lives right next door) was laid low in bed with the flu, and I knew odds were good that my kids would catch it. Still, we sent them off, because we had a date night planned with friends, and because we couldn't quite turn down the promise of some much-needed alone time. Alone. In the house, all alone for two nights.
Last Saturday afternoon I laid atop the bed with my husband, looking out the tall windows at the fast-moving clouds, at the sunshine that came in dappled throught the curtains, and felt so at peace, so content. A little dark grey cloud of thought scudded across my mind that there would be a price to pay for this time alone, that the kids would get sick because of this, but I chased it away.

Cut to later in the week, where I laid on the family room couch for the entire day, snuffling through a box of tissue and weeping salty and germy tears into my pillow, as I gazed upon the utter chaos and mess that has overtaken the house this week. It's all there, still waiting for me. All my contentment and peace are long forgotten. Was it worth it?

For a mediocre burger at a chain restaurant followed up with some Wii bowling with our friends? Probably not, much as we loved getting out and socializing with them. If nothing else, it drives home the point that we really, really need to find a local babysitter and not have to necessarily drive nearly 200 miles round-trip to drop the kids at my mother's, all for 6 hours worth of adult fun.

But for the hours alone with my husband, for the sunny afternoon alone in the house, for talking (and more) without a single interruption or demand for more juice? Totally worth it. (Hack, hack, snuffle.)

Well, almost.

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