It’s Monday morning & the girls are home “sick” from school today. The thing is now it’s too late to send them & the reality of breaking up the fights that are sure to happen later, (whenever they spend too long in the house together they end up driving eachother bananas by the end of the day…sisters…sheesh.) or that I’m going to have to take them both with me to the grocery store (Damn you little shopping carts ::shaking fist in air:: you make what should be a 15 minute trip into a 30 minute ordeal of which I leave with bruises on the back of my ankles & shamed from the apologies I have to make to the teenage grocery re-stocker after my kids sideswipe a display of canned baked beans!!) is setting in & I’m completely second guessing my decision.
I’m not sure of the exact point of miscalculation but the day started a little like this…
I reach over a snoring munchkin to my left who must have slipped into our bed during the night to turn off the alarm. I lay back in my nook for a second while reminding myself, don’t lay here too long, you WILL fall back asleep & will be late for school…again. Then a little voice to the right of me peeps, “does that mean it’s seven?” Apparently she must have snuck in here too at some point. It truly speaks to how tired I am that I had no idea TWO creatures climbed into my bed & snuggled in on both sides to make a mom-sandwich out of me. A momwich. Apparently too tired to make decent puns as well.
I quietly shoosh Sam & gesture to her out cold counterpart. The two of us sneak downstairs & the day begins…waffles, coffee, Today show for 15 minutes. As my little bit of self allotted wake up time ticks away I realize that Soph still hasn’t graced up with her presence. It’s not often that Sophie sleeps through us leaving her alone in the bed. It’s even less often that by 7:40, our time to go upstairs & get dressed for school, she still hasn’t woken up. I look over at Sam nestled on the couch, her back to me, & give her the 5 minute warning that her own personal wake up time is almost over. (An ipad with headphones) She weakly pulls her headphones down & slowly lets just her head fall over her shoulder in a way I immediately know what’s coming next. The look…
Bottom lip puckered up, brow furrowed & big brown doe eyes looking up & out…it’s this look that signals the start of her campaign to stay home sick today. And dog-gonnit, she’s going to bring it on good today.
She says she’s sooo tired & just can’t go upstairs & get dressed. I’m immediately impressed that she was aware enough to use the lack of her sister’s presence to speak her case. She didn’t go for the headache or stomachache, she went for what her little sister was obviously suffering from upstairs…lethargy. Usually when I get this look & the beginning of the symptoms I know I have to cut it off at the start, if I even hesitate for a second that I might let her stay home she’ll go all out & PREACH. The thing is, she actually doesn’t look so great. Cheeks are pretty pink & those big doe eyes do have that watery sick look. Kind of. I say ok, let’s take your temperature. In my head I’m already drawing the battle lines. If it’s completely normal (98.anything) she goes. Which of course means we all get out of our pj’s & go. If it’s borderline we’re going to see if Sophie is still asleep & base the decision on that. Of course if it’s definitively a fever (which is over 100 in my mom book) than she stays. Let me elaborate on my middle ground logic, as you might be scratching your head. If Soph is still asleep at this point she’s definitely exhausted, for whatever reason, & is going to be a bear to wake up. Like, literally a grizzly bear that looks all cute & cozy while it’s hibernating but if you stupidly tried waking it out of it’s slumber it’ll claw your face off & permanently be on the best of reel for “When Animals Attack!” Yes, I’ll admit it. I’m slightly scared of my second born.
All of this of course is messily computed in my foggy morning brain during the short walk from the couch to the kitchen cabinet where I keep the digital ear thermometer. I call her over & as I put her hair behind her ear she let’s her head fall a little as if it’s just too much to ask her to hold it up for the 15 seconds it takes to her temperature. This kid is good.
Sam is a pretty normal 98.7, when she get’s close to 100 it can be just a fluke (I’ve learned through trial & error that wearing headphones prior to an ear temperature taking can make it incorrectly high…duh, right?! It’s amazing how much my brain has melted over the last 6 years.) or it legitimately is when she’s starting to feel sick. Usually the headache & lethargy that come the day or so before a bug hits has a high 99’s temp along with it. So it is enough to not be able to rule out, beyond a reasonable doubt, whether she is faking it.
So I take her hand & buy myself some time. There is an x-factor to consider because it could sway my decision…and that “x” starts with an “S”.
“Let’s go upstairs & start getting ready, then we’ll see how you feel..”
We get to my room & while Sam turns off to go brush her teeth I look in on the bear. Passed out cold. Ugh. At this point it’s already after 8am. We have to be putting on backpacks & heading out the door by 8:10 to not be late to school. I stare at her sweet little face, mouth cracked open & drool leading to a wet spot on my pillow. Looks like we’ll be having a sick day.
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little relieved. For some reason I’m exhausted today too. I was exhausted the whole weekend actually. Last week was such a blur of stress & ‘have-to’s’ that I know my body is now going into ‘sleep mode’ because the battery is completed void of it’s resources.
I let Sam know she could go back to the couch & that “We’ll be staying home today.”
So here we are, not even 10am & I’m already regretting my decision. Kind of. Sam probably would have been fine but little Soph’s body clearly needed the rest. She didn’t roll downstairs until after 8:30! This is a kid who’s almost always up before my alarm has a chance to go off. And Sam might really be getting sick. Maybe.
I love/hate sick days.
Before I hit publish on this one let me say something…
I decided to write this post today because I love being honest with subjects that people otherwise might not admit to but we all experience. I also hope you’ll get a little chuckle because maybe you’re afraid of one of your kids too or perhaps you’ve been guilty of letting them take a sick day when they probably would have been ok going to school. Please don’t lecture me about how bad it is to miss school (we’re talking kindergarten & pre-school here) or how I’m setting a bad precedence for the future. I’ll get enough of that from my husband. Love you boo! Let’s just agree to disagree on this one ok? (;
At 12:35pm the following evidence was captured…