children, mommyhood

One More Thing

Full Speed’s newly updated glasses finally arrived at the optometrist. In all fairness, it was a mixed blessing. Of course I’m grateful that he will have his new glasses (we have waited over a month and a half for them) but I dread going to the optometrist’s office. It never goes smoothly and at some point, I either want to pull my children’s hair out or my own.

When we are enclosed in the tiny room where Full Speed gets his glasses adjusted, he starts grabbing all the pliers, cleaners and mirrors that are within his reach. His little bottom is squirming all over the chair and I can barely keep him focused and still. While the patient employee is trying to get Full Speed’s fit right, his little brother decides to start climbing his way up me and almost knocks me over. I look down at T.Puzzle and notice with the angle his head is turned, that on the side of his neck he has a bulging growth. I put my hand to it and my heart drops as I feel it’s squishy consistency. Logic tells me it’s a swollen lymph node from all of his extended illnesses; crazy, Mommy-fear tells me he has cancer.

During my-child-possibly-has-cancer realization, I am informed that because Full Speed’s prescription is so highly specialized, that he will not be able to have the rec-specs that we had ordered as well (protective eyewear used for active sports). My heart drops again. I have to go to a very zen-like state of mind to keep my eyes from rolling in exasperation. I’m exasperated because the optometrist staff is trying to tell me that his regular glasses are more flexible than average and could suffice in a sporting situation. Uh,… have you met Full Speed? Rec-specs sure would have been nice.

When I get home, I get on the computer to look up swollen glands on WebMD. As I click to the homepage I see a list of common ailments in a column on the left-hand side. I’m about to put T.Puzzle’s symptom in the WebMD database, when the words anxiety disorders jumps out at me from the column. In that moment I knew what I really should be doing is diagnosing my own anxiety issues and letting T.Puzzle’s swollen glands run their course.

T.Puzzle was definitely tired and I could tell he was possibly fighting off some new virus or bacteria (he did end up puking the next day). I put him to bed and then, Mad Dog headed upstairs to put Full Speed down.

Mad Dog returns shaking his head in frustration. Full Speed’s new glasses are broken. He had them for less than three hours (can u see why rec-specs might be a necessity and not a luxury for Full Speed?).

I wonder if WebMD has a diagnosis for a Mom who honestly can’t take one more thing going badly. I’ll let you know if I find it.

children, marital blissishness, parenting

Dinner Out

I remember a time in our early couplehood, Mad Dog and I could make plans on a moment’s notice. We could go where we pleased when we pleased and our leisure time was golden. When Full Speed entered the picture our carefree ability to make plans nearly vanished and then once we added in T.Puzzle, vanish completely it did.

This is not a complaint, it is a statement of fact. Of course early on I was so overwhelmed and shocked by the demands of motherhood that I would have complained incessantly about this loss of freedom (had I any energy). Now, I’m a little older, a little wiser and while I still get frustrated, I have slowly accepted that plans of a social nature were made to be broken.

Despite the fragile nature of plan-making, as parents you still have to make the effort. Sometimes you hit the jackpot and you can have a fun, child-free night out. Mad Dog had the brainstorm idea to go to a nice resort for New Year’s Eve as a family. We would participate in some family activities during the day and hire an on-site babysitter so Mad Dog and I could have a nice dinner to ring in the New Year. Then before plans were definitely made, T.Puzzle slimed me and all bets were off. Instead we spent the days leading up to this New Year’s Eve hoping T.Puzzle would recover (he almost has) and keeping an eye on Full Speed to make sure he wasn’t next in slime (you know what I mean and so far so good).

Since our grand plans never got off the ground, we did manage to get a short dinner out last night. We thought we may even try the movies but T.Puzzle was so over-the-top emotional arising from his afternoon nap, I had a very difficult time being away from him. It took immense will-power not to text our babysitter forty-seven times while dining. Mad Dog was patient with my anxiety and calmly assured me that T.Puzzle would be fine. He doesn’t know when he excused himself from our table for a moment it took Herculean reserve on my part not to pick up his cellphone and dial our sitter (I had made him leave it on the table so we could hear it better if she called or texted).

I never in all my life thought a dinner out would feel so complicated. We ended our night early of course and skipped the movie. That decision ended up seeming surprisingly simple. Too bad motherhood in general can’t be like that.

children, health, life in pictures, marital blissishness, parenting

Sit Back

I decided T.Puzzle needed to be seen by the pediatrician. He sounded terrible and still was a walking, dripping science experiment. His fever was gone, I just wanted to make sure whatever he had wasn’t in his lungs or ears.

Mad Dog picked up Full Speed from school, took him to lunch and than met me and T.Puzzle at the doctor’s. As they pulled up I noticed that Mad Dog had a freshly shaved head. That could only mean one thing. So did Full Speed.

Mad Dog and I don’t see eye to eye when it comes to the length of our boys’ hair. Since we have moved to Florida and our boys are incredibly active, I understand that it makes sense to have little hair in the summer months. However, during the winter here, I want to let their hair grow. As a peace offering, they handed me a gift card to Burger King that said Team Edward with a pic of my favorite Twilight character. At least Full Speed wasn’t completely shaved; he still had a little hair on top. I had to let it go.

Full Speed realizes that T.Puzzle is still under the weather. He turns up the protective empathy and is downright directive and adorable. First, he offers T.Puzzle his toy from his Burger King lunch (which T.Puzzle takes ownership of with glee) and then he grabs T.Puzzle’s hand and leads him into the office.

Once we are back in a room waiting for the doctor, Full Speed orders T.Puzzle to sit on the cushioned bench and tells him what to expect when the nurse or doctor comes in. T.Puzzle  is mostly game for all this instruction until it is time for the removal of his Lightning McQueen shoes (he’s very attached).

While we wait, I attempt to read the boys a story about Ernie and Cookie Monster. It sort of holds their interest but honestly, I feel like I’m in the middle of a wrestling ring being pummeled into oblivion. Sitting still and quietly is not their style. Soon, T.Puzzle thinks he is cute and starts punching and kicking the book. He is warned, admonished and then punished. He screams ‘sorry!’ at the top of his lungs. In a small exam room, his voice really carries.

When the doctor arrives (she’s unusually pleasant and helpful in Mad Dog’s presence, hmmm…) Full Speed is right in her face ‘helping’ her examine T.Puzzle. We have to keep holding him back and redirecting because he is certain it is his job to assist. At one point the doctor asks if T.Puzzle can cough for her. She asks Full Speed to demonstrate what she needs T.Puzzle to do and Full Speed proceeds to fake cough all over her (lovely!). T.Puzzle just watches in dazed amusement, he doesn’t cough but he does get the all clear. His lungs are good and his ears are clear. All we can do is sit back and patiently wait for the rest of his cold symptoms to run their course. If only all aspects of parenting were that easy.

children, parenting

Snuggies for All

Poor T.Puzzle. He does not feel well at all. Unfortunately this has meant that Mad Dog and I have allowed him to sleep with us for three consecutive nights. No one is getting good sleep. T.Puzzle especially likes to kick Mad Dog intermittently and in inopportune areas. We are all exhausted.

Yesterday T.Puzzle and I stayed home so he could recuperate (me, too!). Mad Dog had gone deep sea fishing with the guy relatives and Full Speed was at Grandma’s with his boy cousins. When Mad Dog returned with Full Speed, he brought his birthday presents from his family. One of these presents was an Ohio State Snuggie. I’m sure you are familiar with the Snuggie as it has turned into a national phenomenon sold in Walgreens across America. For some reason, Full Speed is absolutely obsessed with Snuggies. When we see them out he has to list what kind each of his family member should have (mine would be pink in case you are wondering). When Full Speed realized his Dad not only had a Snuggie but it was an OSU one as well, he couldn’t wait to try it on and model it for everyone.

Soon we are off to bed, the Snuggie will stay downstairs and we hope against all hope that T.Puzzle will make it through the night in his own room. Our mental and physical health depends on this.