Exhale

December 13, 2012

Christmas tree

Here I sit at 9:30 on a Thursday night. Folding the last of the day’s laundry by the light of the Christmas tree, Lana drifting off to sleep on the couch beside me. Her snuffles and grunts on the pacifier are slowly becoming quieter the closer she gets to the night’s slumber. Not that folding laundry is a particularly sentimental activity, it just happened to be what I was doing when the mood to type struck. I don’t mind it either. I’d much rather be folding laundry than ironing. Bleh. And have you ever folded size 2T/3T underwear? The fact that they even make butts that tiny is hysterical enough to make the activity almost enjoyable.

Della has just gone to bed and fortunately didn’t pull another round of crying as soon as I shut the door. That’s been her trick lately. Well, that and throwing a crying/whining fit before bed to try and avoid it all together. “Me sit Mama baby.” No, you already sat with Mama and Baby Lana. “Me sit Dada.” (increasingly whiny and teary) No, you already sat with Dada. “Me watch Do-do” (a.k.a Dora) Hell no, child. It’s bedtime.

I did just hear a thunk against the wall, though, which usually means she’s out and has rolled over to knock one of her million stuffed toys into the wall next to her bed. It’s probably the light-up ladybug that projects stars and the moon onto the ceiling and walls, which is her new favorite. A gift from one of Ryan’s cousins for Lana actually, but D has commandeered it until L needs it. Which, my guess is, will be never, or at least until D gives it up willingly. So, never.

This has been a week for the record books around here. All 4 of us have been simultaneously sick. Urg. It started last weekend, when both Ryan and I felt the early twinges of sore throats and headaches. Fortunately mine progressed from there, as it usually does, into just a full-blown head cold. Unfortunately Ryan and D bore the brunt. Ryan has been home sick the past 2 days, which I think is a record for him, with fever, aches, chills/sweats, all over nasty. D barfed Monday and yesterday, but now seems to be on the mend with just the remnants of a runny nose left so far. We’ll see what tomorrow brings, however. L has gotten super congested again, but thankfully I think that is the extent of her cold. I hate when infants get sick, because what can you really do for them?

So we are anxiously awaiting the return of health within our walls. Needless to say moods will be improved all around when it comes. Not that we’ve been mean to each other, but being in the throes of the flu doesn’t really lend itself to robust conversation. Grunts and phrases have been our main modes of communication this week. Fortunately Ryan was feeling better today than yesterday and was able to help me take care of the tinies, but he’s still struggling and going to bed well before either of their bedtimes. So it again falls to me to get them ready and asleep, then finish up everything I need to do around the house. At least I was able to eat dinner before 10:00 tonight.

I do still need to clean up the kitchen. I actually cooked dinner tonight! It was a slow cooker beef bourguignon over egg noodles, which I thought was pretty good. Ryan said it was bland, but whatever. See, moods need to improve soon.

Right now, though, I think I’ll get L into her crib. Before she was born, I read a very helpful newborn trick for cold weather babies – put a heating pad in their crib to warm it up before you lay them down (remove it when they go in there, obviously), and they won’t be awakened so much by their head hitting a cold sheet. So far it’s worked wonders for L. She almost never wakes when I put her in there at bedtime or after her nightly feedings. And fortunately she doesn’t need this pacifier anymore once she’s asleep. She does get a little frantic looking for it when it falls out before she’s totally out, but once the eyelids have drooped for the last time she doesn’t need it to stay asleep or need it put back in if she wakes in the night. Hallelujah. That was one game I was completely unwilling to play – find and replace the pacifier. No way.

I know I should go to bed immediately once the kids are asleep, but these night time hours when I have the house to myself (who am i kidding – i mean the tv to myself) and everyone else is quiet are when I can get “me” stuff done – work on L’s baby book, clean up whatever messes have been left from the day, eat if I haven’t gotten around to it at regular meal times during the day (which is almost always these days), breathe. They help remind me that these peaceful times far outweigh the bad ones in this crazy, exhilarating, frightening, amazing thing we call parenthood. They help remind me why we are not one of the species who eats their young, but rather one who loves and embraces the next generation we have bred. For these tinies right here are going to grow up to be wonders. Our wonders.

See, just look at that face. A precious person in the making…

L

 

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