The Homely Virus

Well, we're on like day 10 of some person in our family being sick. The whole "it takes a week for it to go around the whole family" is no exaggeration. It's not enough of one. It started with Jackson getting fever, then Libby had pink eye in both eyes, Cash is finally over his diarrhea (which included one episode of poop in his bed that was so disgusting I can't even make a joke about it) and Penelope has had a little of all these symptoms, including a rash. I have a sore throat. Jimmy, somehow, has escaped unscathed, although today feels pretty run down. For this recovering emetophobic (fear of vomit, yes it has a name) germ-a-phobe mommy, this whole viral plague has left me with bloody knuckles (from 24-7 hand washing) and living on a diet of Altoids and lip gloss. (Just exaggerating for effect, Mom. I'm eating.) I half-apologize for divulging this information. Who wants to know, right? But if I document this maybe I can offer up a little sympathy in a few decades to another young mommy like me who is SO OVER IT. Can you please get better!? Yes, they're awesome. Yes, I'm thankful for them. Yes, I am blessed. But sickly, whiny, feverish, smelly children are still sick, whiny, feverish, and smelly and it takes it's toll.

Last week, Jimmy was looking at a photo of the author on the back of a book Jackson was reading and said she was "homely." Jackson wanted to know what that meant and so I said, "Watch it, Jimmy. I'm homely. Jackson, a person who is homely is someone who doesn't fix themselves up because they're home a lot. So they don't wear make-up or nice clothes." I mean, I was only two days into the sickness at this point, but if anyone fits the definition of homely, it's me when everyone is sick and I can't leave the house nor want to. (I later looked up the definition to see if I was correct, and I did a pretty good job combining all definitions.) So the next day we went somewhere and when we pulled up I said, "Don't get out of the car yet, I'm going to finish putting on my make-up." (My make-up bag lives in the car...there are only four things in it, and I just put them on while driving on the way to wherever I'm going. I can barely be on time getting everyone else ready, and getting up earlier to apply make-up is NOT important to me.) Anyway, Jackson watched me finish up the mascara (it's hard to apply mascara while driving when you wear glasses and need your glasses just to see your speedometer) and as I put it away he said, rather enthusiastically, "Not homely anymore, Mom!" Yes, it's as if I have an alter ego. No one will know I'm the same person they saw walking to her mailbox in her pajamas with ratty hair and a snotty baby on her hip. Homely girl has left the house! And she's packing mascara! Look out, world.

So anyway, in the midst of all this, I am trying to potty train Cash. And miracle of miracles, he is doing REALLY WELL. Like, he's further along than either of my other two were at this age. I have had to change my reward system up a bit, though. He was totally working the system and squeezing out two or three drops or a tiny terd just to get candy. His entire life was peeing or pooping just enough to get candy. After six days of constant candy, he got what's going around and so I had to take him off all the sugar. So he was sick AND going through detox. It was quite a day. But now he is content with goldfish and Gatorade and is really having a lot of success. It's a Festivus miracle. Cash wins the "feats of strength." (If you haven't seen this Seinfeld episode, you have no idea what I'm talking about.) He amazes us with his ability to control his muscles. Not just sphincter muscles. All muscles. You go, Cash. As long as it's in the toilet.

P.S. I know it's incorrect, but I really like spelling terd with an "e". I think if you wipe up enough of them you should be allowed to spell it however you want.


Sandra Bennage said...

Man, I relate to this post in so many ways, it's kind of scary: terds, virus', feeling homely looking, and well, little boys who like to work the system. I'm ready for this week or two to be over!! We should party when you can come up for air and all's well in your house again (which I hope is soon)!

allhisblessings said...

I wanted to call you on Wednesday and say, "I'm really not a slacker, I just have sick kids!" But I can see that it really doesn't matter. This week is a wash. Literally. I'll tell you later about how I've had to wash every stitch of fabric in my home because of the illnesses going around here. But I can't right now. It's too graphic for the internet. :) Ahhh, kids. They're the best.

Jennie said...

Jules, funny all around! The phobia, which 2008 harshly forced me to overcome, the definition of homely (My neighbors must be conviced I don't own anything other than my alternating blue and pick pajama/house clothes) and terd. HILAR! I only know of one other person on the plante who uses the word tird. Man, thanks for the laugh. I love you and feel like I really know what you mean here!

The Tompkins said...

For the rest of us!