So, Matthew is really sick. Yesterday he threw up three times. It’s only 6:00 a.m. and I’ve already cleaned up the first of many, many times I’m sure he’ll do it again today. He started the day before yesterday coughing up just the tiniest bit of pasta ever, seemed to be over it without even catching a fever, then asked for a bite of my green beans at dinner time the next day and puked everywhere before he even had the chance to swallow them. On the nicest sweater he owns, right before Mary’s clarinet recital. And you can probably guess that the third time was in the middle of the night. Because, obviously, that’s when little kids like to throw up best.
Spencer’s been getting all kinds of gifts and cards with his Christmas tips from customers this week. One of them was a homemade loaf of chocolate chip pumpkin bread. We were reluctant to even share something homemade with the kids -- but against our better judgment decided we were probably being overprotective and to just go ahead. When he got sick but never caught a fever we figured it must have just been the bread that didn’t agree with him. We kept his meals light the rest of the day and tried to make him rest. Now he’s not keeping anything down and you can tell without taking his temperature that his fever is up. He’s had like, eighteen baths in the past day and a half and I keep finding little gems of vomit on my clothes that I didn’t realize had gotten on me or hadn’t been wiped up completely. This morning, (and by morning I mean barely) after spending a good, solid hour changing sheets, loading the washer, scrubbing puke from a pillow without a case, bathing Matthew, and then washing my hands -- I went to grab the belt of my robe and got a palm-full of vomit I never realized had been covering my side the whole time.
To make it worse, I’ve had to transition from tending to Matthew to tending to Scarlett so often that I’ve already forgotten to wash my hands twice and I've pumped the hand sanitizer dry. I’ve never been a germ-aphobe before, but having a newborn around a sticky, reckless toddler -- the kind who thinks nothing of popping abandoned skittles he finds under the seats at the DMV in his mouth and bragging about it -- is enough to turn anyone into a nervous wreck. Every time the baby dribbles differently now or farts in a new pitch, I’m sure she’s dying, and Spencer has to calm me down. Matthew’s no infant, so him having a stomach bug is nothing new and nothing to get dramatic about (in fact, I’m silently celebrating that this is the first time I don’t have to have a panic attack about not making it into work, and that we have another excuse to stay in our Pjs) But keeping him away from the baby is a new challenge for me. I started typing this at 6:00 and it’s almost 9:00 now because I’ve had to put Matthew back in his own bed forty-six hundred thousand MILLION times.
We'll see how it goes.