Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The House of Sick

The creeping crud has struck. It started last Thursday as LO and I were baking. Coughs aplenty, in between the giggles and sneezes. I asked LO to please cover his mouth, as we were baking, but he just grinned and drooled. I sometimes feel as though we are speaking different languages.

By Friday, LO had progressed to a nasty cough that sounded somewhat deep in the chest. Unfortunately for my sense of myself as a good mother, I found myself appreciating the extra long nap that the crud produced rather than worrying about the fact that my child had contracted the crud in the first place. Well, if I don't have something legitimate to feel guilty about, I'll just manufacture something ridiculous.

By Saturday, it was clear that my co-conspirator had decided to share the wealth with Mama. I slept in late because my head felt like it had been stuffed with cotton. Really nasty, mucusy cotton. (Apologies to anyone eating lunch while reading my blog. I should have warned you). If this was what LO had been feeling like, it's no wonder he'd been sleeping so much. In between blowing my nose, I tried to become more proficient in nose squeegeeing with the bulb syringe the hospital sent home with us. I suspect that this, like taking LO's temperature the recommended way, will never become something at which I call myself a natural. There is nothing more pitiful than a baby who cannot scream efficiently because of how hoarse he is while his snot-stuffed mama descends upon him wielding what amounts to a tiny turkey baster with plans to shove it up his nose. Nurse Ratched is just not role that suits me.

Luckily, this brush with crud has given me multiple opportunities to steam the baby. (It's the best way to get out those stubborn set-in stains). At least two or three times a day over the past week, J or I have sat in the bathroom with the shower running at full heat blast with a stuffed up baby on our knees and a book or magazine disintegrating in our hands. The good news is that LO seemed to benefit from the water treatment. The bad news is that we have a previously undiscovered life form in the spore/mold family taking up residence in each of our two bathrooms. We expect the Purdue biology department to stop by any time now.

Through it all, LO has remained his smiley and cheerful self, for which I am grateful. It made it easier for me to perform gross-ectomies on him throughout this experience. And it helped me remember that a cold isn't so bad. I mean, yeah, colds are miserable and nobody likes days of stuffy/runny noses, coughing, a sore throat and a headache, but it's no reason to lose your sunny outlook on the world. Unless, of course, someone is trying to squeegee out your nose. Then you scream like hell.

LO and I are both on the mend, which is happy news. Between the creeping crud and the snowy/icy apocalypse from last week, I literally have not left the house since January. (Monday, January 31 was the last time I went outside for anything other than to check the mail). But I just got an email from J requesting soup and tea when he gets home. I just hope he is able to blow his own nose, because I'd really like to retire the bulb syringe.

Ah, the things we do for love.


  1. you're bonding as a family, see? everyone sick together, like soldiers in the field together.

  2. I hate that bulb syringe! Who ever decided that was good way to clean a child's nose? All right so maybe it is but it sure looks awful! The best way to get rid of cold is a humidifier and vix! If you are an adult, spicy soup helps a lot as well. I normally do spicy ramen soup from the store because I'm too lazy to cook when I am sick! Hope you guys feel good soon!