Say Hello to Mr. Mom!

sicksantaI suggest you all lock your doors and draw your blinds, because it looks like Santa’s coming early this year, and he’s bringing germs – which were definitely NOT on the Christmas list.   Jolly Ol’ Saint Sickolas swung through the daycare yesterday to deliver a special gift to my child; a 102deg fever (he actually wanted a fire truck), and now poor Marcus the Red-Nosed Toddler could lead his own team of reindeer if he could just get out of bed – though to avoid litigation, his would need different names, like Napper and Whiner and Cougher and Sneezin’, Snifflin’ and Fever, and Mucus, and Wheezin’, and they’d mostly just hobble around the barn under blankets drinking tea…

Even though my son is almost 3, I’ve never really had the opportunity to spend a day with him when he wasn’t feeling well. His mother usually handles that, but I decided – since it’s Christmas time and all – to quit shirking my responsibilities as a parent, and give up one of my precious final days in the office this year.  It was a great sacrifice to be sure, turning my three day week into two, but I do it for the family!  What I found, though, is that a sick child is a strange kind of thrill ride.  We brought him home yesterday and put him to bed for several hours, and he spent the rest of the night in a fog in front of the TV.  Bedtime was rough, because children are born with strong natural instincts that force them to fight things like medicine, even when it both tastes great AND helps them feel better, but we muddled through.  This morning he woke up seemingly 100% better – completely back to normal – except for the fact that he only had one bite of his waffle, and didn’t throw a fit when I put it in the toaster instead of him.  Breakfast aside, he was back in big way; for the next 4 hours, my hopes for a lovable sick kid were dashed as I dealt with a loud and energetic spider monkey who – instead of eating – spent his morning jumping on and off the couch yelling something about Spiderman.  In the span of three to four hours, we watched “Paw Patrol” AND “Sheriff Callie” (the MUSTACHE ONE, obviously), chased dad around the living room with a rake (not my idea), built a fort, destroyed said fort, ran from an imaginary shark – possibly a hallucination caused by the fever, now that I think about it – played with playdoh, wore and lost stickers that are now scattered around the floor along with several blankets and random paper scraps of unknown origin, and threw a rolling turtle down the stairs.  Poor thing never saw it coming…all that led me to believe that a quick trip to Lowes to actually accomplish something would be acceptable, so I spent 10 minutes hunting around for socks and shoes and coat and hat and gloves and snacks and water and toys and anything else that wasn’t bolted down and might be required for a 15 minute trip to buy pipe; all while my son complained that he wanted to go NOOOOOOOOOOOOW!  (I’d already be BACK if I was going by MYSELF!)  Finally, we made it to the car.  He immediately had to have my sunglasses, which left me squinting, but fine, it avoided a fight.  Things were going pretty well until we made it out of the neighborhood, at which point the boy alerted me that he wanted to go home.  “In a little bit,” I said, “we have to go to the store first!”  “Okay…” he said, and was quiet for upwards of four seconds.  In fact, he seemed fine until we were halfway to the store, when he said, “I’m so COLD!”  Now it’s winter, and there’s snow on the ground, so that sounds like a reasonable complaint, but he was stuffed into a giant coat and thick hat, and the child burns approximately 4000 Cheez-It calories per hour, so he tends to stay warm regardless of the weather.  Super Dad!That was also what he’d said the night before right before we noticed his fever so, like any good parent, I risked both our lives to turn around and reach for his forehead while driving.  Of course the fever was back – I should’ve known not to try to accomplish anything – so we headed home and went back to bed.  I managed to force a little more Tylenol down his tiny gullet, vapo-rubbed his feet for the cough – which I still think is ridiculous – and set up the humidifier.  Super Dad!  I then enjoyed 17 minutes of quiet before the Tylenol kicked in and I heard him upstairs jumping on the bed and clapping – that stuff is like a Tesla supercharging station.  So there we were again, watching more TV; “PJ Masks” and “Super Why” that time, which is supposedly educational, but makes me want to slam my head in a door.  Another nap and he was back to the couch again to watch roughly 10 minutes of both “Space Dogs” and “Zootopia,” before moving on to “The Incredibles.”  Good thing dad spent years amassing a collection of Disney/Pixar cartoon movies!  Even so, we’re running out of shows, and he’ll be home again tomorrow because the daycare won’t allow him back until he’s been fever-free for 24hrs – they will, however, allow us to continue paying them while he’s not there, and here’s my beef with that; my kids don’t go to daycare every day, so when we add a day on a given week, they charge us for it.  The opposite though, is not true; they don’t reduce our bill when the kids are out sick, or out of town, or – like next week – when the daycare is closed for several days for Christmas and New Years.  Total BS!  Also BS is the fact that, regardless of how many children you have in daycare, you can only claim $5,000/year in childcare costs on your taxes.  WHAT A LOAD OF CRAP!  But we’ve wandered…

Sick Marcus

The little dude is back in bed for the night now, ultimately no better than he was yesterday – a Lilliputian roller-coaster of explosive happiness and pathetic misery.  I don’t know how long these things usually last, or if it’s contagious, but I made chicken noodle soup for lunch and downed 16 ounces of Airborne just in case.  I also had an apple to ward off doctors, because I will not be sick over Christmas, and I have one more day of work to skate through for the year!  Now if you’ll excuse me, I’d like to watch the rest of Zootopia before someone puts me to bed.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s