When I woke up on Thursday morning it seemed as if my children had read my blog. And had vowed to change their ways. My oldest brought me oatmeal. In bed. And my second-born walked into my room announcing ‘I missed you!’. The same kid who had told me two days before that he hadn’t missed me, because he didn’t like me.
It was slightly surreal. I didn’t know if their dad had told them to do any of those things, but I didn’t care. It was magical.
And then I walked down the hall and found a container of floss lying on the floor. Its contents strewn all over the floor. When I walked downstairs I found a roll of toilet paper – unraveled – outside the bathroom. And Pente beads dumped all over the dining table and floor.
No. They had not read my blog. The oatmeal and ‘miss you’ were just happy coincidences.
But it didn’t matter. I had plans to be away for a few hours. And the professor would be in charge for a while.
I called home a few hours later to see if my posse could pick me up. ‘That’s going to be problematic,’ the professor replied. Cryptically. ‘Why?’ I asked, slightly unsettled. ‘I’ll tell you when you get home. Let’s just say…we’re even,’ he decided. I assumed he meant ‘even’ after Wednesday’s day of woe. But I’m not the type of person who can wait until I get home for information.
‘What happened?’ I demanded, certain the Gort had gotten expelled from school. Weird that that was my first thought.
It turns out our oldest cherub, who’d been happy as a lark all morning long, had gone to school. And tossed his cookies. I gather he (at least) tossed his cookies in the bathroom instead of the classroom. Thank goodness for small dignities, even if his jeans bore the brunt of the calamity. Apparently he went to the office to report his misfortune and, since he claimed to be feeling better, they gave him some loaner sweatpants and sent him back to the classroom to wait for his dad to come and get him.
‘Something must be going around,’ the teacher told the professor. ‘This is the third kid this week.’
I arrived home with a gift of sushi for the professor. Who hates puke more than anything. When I walked through the door my first thought was that the house didn’t smell of biohazard. It smelled of….baking.
I noted the chocolate chip cookies resting on the counter. Apparently it is not possible to survive parenting small children without mass quantities of fat, sugar and chocolate. I felt vindicated somehow, as thoughI wasn’t a complete loser for succumbing to the lure of dessert on a daily basis. It’s just plain necessary in this phase of life.
Our oldest was lying on the couch in a pitiful state. Much paler than his normal pale, with a bowl and a blanket and a towel beside him. And a curious brother invading his personal space. And a grossed out father lurking in the corner. And an oblivious baby brother sitting on the floor playing with his toys.
The Hen and I went to Safeway for Gatorade and saltines and popsicles. And to Blockbuster for some entertainment. By 8.30 the Gort was on the mend. And the Hen was asleep. The baby watched ‘It’s Complicated’ with me while eating his fifth meal of the day.
Another subpar movie for the books.
The baby, who is nursing an erupting tooth, finally fell asleep after midnight. And woke up crying again at 2. And the Hen woke up at 7. Sharp. Caffeinated coffee was going to be a necessity.
‘Good news mom!’ my oldest shouted from the bathroom later in the morning. ‘My hands don’t smell stinky anymore!’ Stinky as in puky, I assumed. And, just like that, the barfing flu released its first victim.
Will there be others? Time will tell.