...and also for Flu. For Fear and for Fighting and Frustration, too!
Flu. My newfound resolve to keep up with the blog hit a snag almost immediately. My mom and Aaron's mom both called on Sunday night to check in and to wish me a happy birthday. Unfortunately, both of them said something along the lines of "I'm glad everyone is healthy at your house." I tried immediately knocking on wood... but it was too late. Murphy's Law immediately kicked in. Less than 24 hours later, I was on my way home from work. I was feeling fine when I got on the bus. By the time I got off the bus I was SICK. Fever, horrible chills, drippy nose, sore throat, utter exhaustion... all setting in within about 20 minutes.
Oh no! I've seen this before! Almost exactly this, in fact, when I came down with the flu while at church last year. I recognized the symptoms and the sudden onset and knew it probably wasn't just a cold. And over the rest of the week it was proved that this was in fact the flu. Again. For the 2nd year in a row. And both years I got a flu shot! No fair. On the plus side, this case of the flu is not as bad as last year's, which knocked me down for about 6 weeks. And none of the rest of the family has come down with it... *knock, knock, knock*
Fire. So because I'm still exhausted from the flu, I got up very briefly when the kids got up this morning, then got back in bed and tried to sleep in a little. Aaron hadn't left for work yet, so I thought I could squeeze in another hour of rest. I remember Haley coming in and asking me where to find bread for some peanut butter toast for breakfast, and I was just glad that she was willing to feed herself and her brothers so I didn't have to get up yet. I told her there was a loaf of bread in the freezer, and she'd just need to defrost it in the microwave for 10-15 seconds. Unfortunately, in my hazy state of sleepiness, I forgot about the twist-tie on the loaf. Haley put the whole loaf into the microwave and started it up. The next thing I knew was when Haley came running into the room screaming, "Mommy! There's a fire in the kitchen!"
There's a wake-up call for you! I've often said that nothing wakes a parent up faster than that choking cough that precedes a child's vomiting... turns out that Fire! is even more effective. I leapt out of bed and headed for the kitchen. I vaguely heard Aaron (who was just getting out of the shower) ask, "Did she say something is expired?" When I yanked open the door to the microwave I saw that the bread and plastic wrapper were merrily burning away. Luckily it was a small fire and I was able to quickly put it out. There was no lasting damage to the microwave (just a small scorch mark at the back) and we even saved half the loaf of bread for breakfast. Whew!
Fear. With the recent abduction and murder of Jessica Ridgeway followed by several more abduction attempts in the area, I've been a nervous wreck. It doesn't help that I'm out of my anxiety meds. I hate to even let the kids set foot outside without me. We're being extra careful that the kids don't walk anywhere on their own, and we've had talks with them about stranger danger, non-stranger danger, etc. I don't want to make the kids paranoid and afraid, but it is so hard to let go a little. I consider it a pretty major accomplishment that I let them all go play outside this afternoon. In our yard... with the 6-foot privacy fence... and the padlock on the gate. And even then I was a bit nervous. But I did let them go.
Fighting and Frustration. They go hand-in-hand today. Oh the fighting every time I turn around! My kids claim to love each other. And sometimes they act like that's true. But today you would swear that they are all mortal enemies. Fighting and spitting and hitting and crying and throwing things and breaking things. And the frustration on my end that it seems nothing will induce them to get along for more than five minutes at a time. Frustration that this really, really long day does not want to come to an end. Frustration that this blog post has taken almost 2 hours to write because I am constantly interrupted by more fighting! Dinner will be ready in 2 minutes and believe me, the moment they are finished eating it is time for bed! I'm sending the three older ones to the bedroom with a movie and putting up a gate so they can't come see me anymore. I am done.