Double dose

You know all those books you read about parenting, the ones that tell you how to nurture, what to do in case this or that happens, or how to raise a good kid? They are great and all, but they don’t prepare you to actually be a parent, well not for 100 percent of it.

They are helpful sure. I sort of had an idea that raising a boy was going to be vastly different than raising a girl thanks to those books. Thank you Mrs. baby book author.

But I think they leave some stuff out on purpose. If not, if people read about days like we are having this week, they would either stop buying said books or not have kids (which would be a bummer).

So this is how the week started: Monday morning Maren said she didn’t feel great. I told her I have a meeting at 9 a.m., if you don’t feel well, have the school nurse call and I will come get you. My cell phone rang at 9:32.

Off I go, pick her up and park her in front of the TV for the rest of the day while I work from home. Tuesday is better, not great, but better. She stays home from school just to be safe. Tuesday afternoon it started to snow and I hear: “Dad, can we go out and play in the snow?” I say, “sure we can, right after school tomorrow.”


Getting our relax on

But if she wants to play in the snow, I figure we are on our way back to recovery.

Then comes Wednesday. Maren wakes up to go to school and is down for the count, 101.7 fever. I make the required email/phone call to work to break the news that I won’t be in again. Ten minutes later baby brother wakes up. His face is really red. Mom takes his temp and it’s 101.5.

Let the fun day begin. Maren takes her medicine like a champ and settles in. Brant takes his medicine, then two seconds letter gacks it up all over the kitchen table. (Don’t read about that stuff in any book!)

And we’re off and running. While they both went down fine for a nap (even the 7-year old who never naps) I had to wake them both up from a deep sleep to go to the hospital. Here’s a line you will never read in those handy-dandy parenting books: Taking two sick kids to the hospital at the same time is a breeze.

Actually, it wasn’t awful. It wasn’t fun, but it wasn’t awful. One kid with strep, one with some sort of viral thing. Could have been a lot worse.

So back home we go, Maren lays down for 5 hours. Brant fights me all afternoon (for a sick kid, he was a total pain in the neck). He wanted me to color with him, but I was only allowed to use some ugly color brown I had never heard of. Then he wanted to do stickers, but that entailed me picking 100 of them off the sheet so he could stick them on a piece of construction paper. All I wanted was sick kid to go to sleep, all he wanted to was put 4,000 Cinderella stickers on my glasses.

But the rest of the day went okay. They both slept a long time. Fevers went down and up and down again. But they are home again today as Mrs. Bowman took the day off and I returned to work with my head spinning in a thousand directions.

I remember someone telling me a couple of years ago that the hours are long but the years are short. That sort of defines this week. The days just took forever. But my kids are healthy and a week closer to leaving for college.


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