We have not got back into the New Year groove.
No sign of the smooth running routine we usually carry out on autopilot, hindered only by my odd menopausal brain farts where my memory is blanker than Perez Hilton’s fan book.
|Cuteness abounds – but not at 3 am|
And, of course, we have “the bug” – a random collection of germs, possibly viral, probably bacterial and symptoms that would challenge Florence Nightingale who Caitlin is currently learning about in school.
Almost every night at 3 am since the new term started, I have been woken by shouting and muttering (Ieuan), wailing due to a bad dream (Caitlin), sore ears, sore tums, and a gushing toilet flush which the Husband has finally agreed to mend after approximately a month of asking nicely (obviously this has been interpreted as nagging).
There are bottles of Calpol and Nurofen littering most surfaces.
In fact, I now have more plastic syringes than cutlery.
Ieuan has been running a fever and Caitlin after we applied Hello Kitty eyeshadow yesterday to which she had an allergic reaction, now looks like she’s about to attend a Venetian masked ball.
When I haul myself yet again into the early morning darkness, I know I should be as I imagine Florence Nightingale would have been – crisply efficient and able to administer comfort and loving calmness.
In reality, I find myself a charmless harridan in a blue dressing-gown on the lookout for acting up and attention-seeking.
For the first few times I am able to smooth brows and rearrange bedding, to offer water and, if needed, brandish the plastic syringe.
By the fifth or sixth disturbance, I am like a mad, sleep-deprived woman who would probably tell you my bank details and sort code if you asked and likely to tell the children to “just ruddy well go back to sleep”.
In the morning ‘mummy guilt’ strikes and I wish I could have been more Florence.
The Husband does not do illness.
He is of the staunch ‘no pain, no gain’ crew who, deciding they won’t be ill, just aren’t.
He also says that the kids play me royally which doesn’t help when I’m trying to assess what kind of mother I’m supposed to be and how deep the well of sympathy should be.
For those parents dealing daily with serious childhood illnesses, I can only stand and marvel in admiration at their fortitude. I wish I had more of their strength and courage.
Everything seems clearer in the morning, doesn’t it?