Update: sickness befalls the household

It’s many days again that I intended to write.  But days have gone by.  I returned from Seattle to a planned visit (it had been way too long) from my daughter’s brother and one of his moms.  I flew in on a red-eye and they arrived just an hour after I got home for about 24 hours on Saturday before last.  We loved seeing them and I especially love seeing the two young people together, wrestling, running, art-making and now, they began playing a certain computer game, side by side.  (Which I don’t love as much as the  wrestling, running and art-making, but every generation has its–things-that-younger-people-do-that-older-people-worry-about moments.  The time spent at the computer by my 9-year-old, is certainly one of my worries.  I do not discount it just because every generation has such worries.)

Then just two days after they left, my partner got sick.  Really, really sick.  Like staying-in-bed-all-day-sleeping-not-eating-sick.  The doctor said it was  just a really bad upper respiratory infection he was seeing a lot of.  We took care of her and I did all the rest– shuttling to and from school, dishes, homework, etc.  I knew my partner was really sick because she missed basketball practice for the 4th-5th grade girls team she is coaching.

On Saturday she was a little better.  Late afternoon we all ventured out together to a museum– which had an amazing exhibit of skyscrapers built to scale in Legos.  We liked it especially because about half the buildings represented were from Chicago, my hometown, and a place where my daughter has spent a lot of time.  She had brought paper and pencil and clipboard with her and furiously took notes and wrote a report about the buildings as she looked.  Which, in any case, but given her reading and writing struggles, was quite wonderful to watch.  I mostly want her to read well and write well because it is a joy, because she has and will have so much to say and to want to know.

We went to dinner at a close friend’s house with another couple that we’ve been very close to since our daughter was three. The adults sat and talked and caught up and the four children of our three families ate with us and played and played.  I was clearly on my way down, though.  By the time I got home I had a fever of 101 and I slept– really all day Sunday– I mean all day– and pretty much all day yesterday.  My daughter went to school without complaint, and my partner returned to work but only for 3/4 of the day.  In the afternoon, when she and daughter came through the door, my daughter stripped off coat and boots and hat and curled up on the couch where I had perched myself and fell into a deep sleep.  When she woke up we took her temperature which was 101 and then later 103.9.

All of us, down for the count.  I have a long history of asthma and this kind of respiratory thing really takes a lot out of me.  I am so glad that this is a team effort with my partner and me.  This is definitely my shout-out to women who somehow care for their one, two, three, four or five children on their own, through sick days like these– their own sick days or their children’s.

I started another more serious post last week after watching our girls play basketball– called Winners and Losers, about their games about the meaning of winning and losing in our culture.  I hope to finish and post it in the coming weeks.  But for now it is all about a house full of people who are sick.  Cancelled appointments, changes in plans.   Ibuprofen.  Did anyone eat anything today?  Has my daughter been drinking enough?  Have I?  Everything, postponed.

In the foggy haze of fever and sleep I did talk to my sister and my mother yesterday– to remember together that yesterday would have been my father’s 85th birthday had he lived that long.  I thought about him both in and out of sleep yesterday.  And miss him still.

One response to “Update: sickness befalls the household

  1. You bring all these threads together in this one post (like life!).

    And sorry everyone’s been so sick. Those are such distinct important hard moments.

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