Okay, so here's the story. Tuesday, Kate goes to basketball practice at 4:00 am (really 6:30, but this what's a story without a little exaggeration?) and then has AAU practice in the evening at something like 7:00 pm. She gets home a little tired, and feels warm. I think she's just doing too much. Zach's been coughing for days and not sleeping well and is all congested. The nine inches of snow we got is STILL hanging around. And I just went to Home Depot 3 times in one night to try to get a sump pump so my basement doesn't flood. So that's the scene.
First act, I get up on Tuesday, Zach sounds a little worse and Kate's got a bit of a fever. So I give them tylenol, give Zach instructions to give his sister fluids and more tylenol in 4-6 hours and to call me if there are any problems. I go to work. (Kenny meantime, healthy as a horse, as always.) So no call. No news is good news, right?
Second act, I pick up Kenny, get home at 3:30 and say, "Hey, Z, how are you?" He's lounging on the couch, coughing. "I did my math assignments."
Mom thinks, "WOW." Says, "Good for you, you must be proud of yourself. You sound like you're still coughing, though, how's Kate?"
"She hasn't woke up today."
Brain screeches to a halt. "Not at all?"
Okay, I'm thinking, "Did it not occur to you that not waking up might, just might, be a reason for concern? You are so fired as a nurse. Why did I not stay home?"
Third act: But I manage to not scream. And go upstairs, and wake Kate. She's got a temp of 104. She's delusional. "Mom you're shaking. So is the tv." "No honey, I think your eyes are shaky." "Hey, make everything stop moving so fast." She can't stand up and her eyes are rolling around in her head.
So we go to the doctor and sure enough. She tests positive for influenza. Not your garden-variety flu....the BIG flu. The one you get vaccinated for. Except we didn't. Long story there, but believe me when I say there is a reason. And a 10 year old girl from Walla Walla died of this last week.
Okay, color me freaked out.
But they put her on an antiviral regimen, and last night she was feeling well enough to throw a sock at her brother. She's still very tired, but her fever hasn't spiked in 24 hours, so I think the worst is over.
Zach missed three days of school and one basketball game. His team lost that game. There goes the undefeated season. DRAT. Z was able to play last night, although he's not 100%. They won that game.
Kenny gets braces on Tuesday. Wish me luck. He's already fretting about it. And following me around the house telling me that he's FINISHED with dentists and won't go. This ought to be truckloads of fun.
I met with an attorney last week. (A friend, Terri.) About guardianship for Kenny. It will be a simple thing. But I was surprised how much sadness I felt about the whole thing. It's one step I need to take to protect Kenny, but it means facing...and declaring...that he's not going to be able to manage these things himself. As we go on, day-to-day, Kenny does so well. It's easy to pretend sometimes, that he's just a regular teenager. In some ways he is. Most of the time I can just not look at the ways he's not. This brings it all right out there. Ready or not. He's going to turn 18.
And once again, I come face-to-face with all those dreams. You know what I mean, when your baby is born, you hold them in your arms and you imagine. You believe. The whole world is waiting for him. He can do ANYTHING. He is PERFECT. Except when it's not. I think we all have to face that the dream child we imagine is different from the real child we have. But there are some of you out there who understand what I'm saying. Who know that sharp razor, who've experienced the keenness of that loss. It changes your world profoundly. Forever.
I could write a lot more about that...but not in the space to do that right now. At least the animals are having a blast: