If I could sum up the last few weeks in my household in one word, it would be UNWELL.
It’s my fault, really. I was far too smug that last term we didn’t really catch too many nasties. Then Christmas hit and suddenly we’ve had flu, some sort of viral throaty sickness wipe-out bug AND that trendy Strep A affliction all the cool kids are getting circulating around the five of us. In the space of ten days. Over the holidays, during the special time I had earmarked for lounging on the sofa, reading a good book whilst eating an unacceptable amount of cheese. Instead I found myself lounging on the sofa, not eating anything, brain so muzzy that I couldn’t even bear to read the Lego instruction leaflet let alone a good book. And I was only ill for a few days. The kids are still ill. Well, one of them is, another one is mostly very grumpy at the return to 7am starts and the third is still recovering from an allergic reaction to the antibiotics they were prescribed for the aforementioned Strep A (scarlet fever) which saw them break out in what I can only describe as a cataclysmic extravagance of hives far more dramatic than the comparatively weedy rouge of the actual disease. Yes, 2023 has been a bloody riot so far.
But things are slowly improving, she says tentatively, and there have been some funny moments (and by funny, I mean that special type of parenting funny where you have to laugh otherwise you will fucking cry). The two youngest being so ill has meant that our nights have once again been punctured by nonsensical awakenings, multiple times, never at the same time (in case we ever wanted to know what it was like to have twins, which, shockingly, we didn’t). Here are some of the reasons communicated to us as to why they are awake and therefore we most definitely need to be too:
B2: We didn’t have fajitas. YOU SAID WE WOULD HAVE FAJITAS AND WE DID NOT!
[the fact that she was too ill to eat anything and didn’t actually even WANT fajitas when questioned about dinner choices earlier that day was utterly Beside The Point]
B3: I want to be tucked in like a banana, LIKE A BANANA! NOW!
Approx. 48 seconds later…
B3: I WANT TO GET OUT! Mummy! I get out of the banana right now, RIGHT NOW!
B2: I can’t see. I CAN’T SEEEEEEE! [had eyes closed]
B3: [sobbing] But I wanted a rainbow one, a RAINBOW ONE LIKE B2!
[still have no clue what the fuck rainbow-what he wanted]
B2: sore throat, sore sore throat
B3: cripplingly urgent HUNGER
B2: I’m trying to think about Elsa but the cats keeping eating my feeeeeeeet!
B3: But I want to eat it, I WANT TO EAT IT! NOOOOOOO!
[after I took away a plate of stale crusts which had somehow made it into his bed]
And perhaps, the highlight of the week:
Me: Why are you awake?
B2: BECAUSE I’M CRYING.
I mean, she wasn’t wrong.