Normally my kids stay fairly healthy, without excessive hand washing and anti-bacterial gels. We don’t go crazy over wiping down shopping carts and so on. If they don’t experience germs they’ll never build defenses against them. Neither had had a flu shot this year so when the doctor suggested the flu-mist while we were there for Stevie’s well child visit Friday afternoon, I agreed. Later that evening Stevie got a little raspy. At three a.m. she came to me with a fever of 103.4 and a little delusional. As she lay next to me in bed she giggled pointing at the nightstand ” Look at the princess and puppy blowing bubbles, right there in the middle on the side….that’s silly…” We spent the rest of the weekend up all night, sleeping during the day, not eating, battling a headache, a dry cough and a fever that would go back to 103 if you were 15 minutes late on the next dose of Advil. Pretty lousy weekend but for the cuddles….oh, the glorious cuddles. Stevie is normally too busy trying to take over the world to give you a hug but to have her wheezing, sweating and totally dependent on my snuggling and rocking her was fantastic. I fell asleep in the recliner with her for the first time in ages. I’m grateful for the stronger-than-they-thought strain of flu virus that gave me a different kind of Stevie Mess this weekend.
It was rainy on Friday when me and the girls ran some errands. We were all packed away in the van again after our trip to Costco when I turned the key and nothing happened. I had turned the lights on because of the rain and forgotten to shut them off and the battery had died. Brenna began to panic because she was “afraid the car was going to blow up” and Stevie was making a horrible yowling sound because she was over due for a nap. The hour that Triple A said it would take for assistance to arrive just wasn’t gonna cut it. Battery jumping is not one of the services that Costco offers but I thought that there might be someone in the Tire Center who could assist me; I’ve always been impressed with Costco’s customer service. The damsel in distress was surprised however when the tire guy plopped a battery jumper thingy on the counter, said “red on red, black on black” and took my Costco card to hold until I returned the blasted thing. I stood there blinking at him in shock as Brenna did a double lutz on the slick floor and the rain pattered down outside. With one hand dragging 28 pounds of now boneless 2-year-old , I took the 15 pound box of “I have no clue how to use this” in the other and said “Okay, here goes..” Thank God for the gentleman behind me in line who had properly assessed the situation. He kindly offered to help me out saying ” I know if they hand this to my wife she would say ‘What I should do with this?”. I am so grateful there was someone in Costco with the level of human decency I had expected from its employees. The man offered to stay with the kids once he got the car running but said ” Ah, I know you won’t” and did stay with the car while I returned the jumper. Mr. Nameless Italian Guy, thank you so much for your kindness…and I hope you didn’t post it to Facebook.
Last night as I was making the nightly rounds before heading to bed the re-play of that nights episode of The Walking Dead was beginning. It was dark and quiet in the house and the theme music gave me a familiar chill. It reminded me of the theme song from Unsolved Mysteries. I wanted to go hug my children and apologize for any terror I had inflicted upon them at 9pm on Sunday nights. As a child with an over active imagination bed time was hard on me, but the nights I could hear strains of the Unsolved Mysteries theme music and the hosts disturbing voice coming from the living room were pure misery. Every star in the sky was a far off UFO, every neighbor a murderer waiting for that UFO to send signal that I had fallen asleep so he could abduct me. Worse yet were the nights I could hear my parents spoons clanging on bowls of ice-cream. Didn’t they know someone was out there plotting my demise? And they’re sitting around eating Rocky Road?! Would there be any ice-cream left for me if I did make it through the night?! Oh the horror!!