Survival Mode

31 Jan

The first month of 2012 brought a vaccine reaction, a cancer diagnosis (the cat), and death (Steven’s brother).  The first month of 2013 brought a steady stream of sickness.  I think we’ve had a total of 4 days this month that no one was sick.

I’m really starting to hate the month of January.

Surprise, surprise, we’re all sick again.  Alex was doing some strange stuff at meal times following his gastrointestinal virus.  We had to resort back to baby food, which was odd for my voracious, adventurous eater.  But I figured it was just a little regression following a really nasty illness. But then came the rash…

I suspected strep.  I called the pediatrician’s office, and the nurses there conferred and agreed that it sounded like strep.  I took him in for a test, and yep, it’s strep.  Again.

I saw my doctor that same afternoon, as my throat had been hurting, and I’d been unusually tired.  My strep test was negative, but the doctor said something was going on, and she prescribed me an antibiotic anyway.

The next day, cold symptoms started in Alex.  Then came the 104-degree fever.  Then the cough.  My boy was sick.  And then… I got it.  Three solid days of 100-degree fever, cough, cold symptoms.  Thankfully, as I’d just seen the doctor, I was able to call and ask them to phone in a prescription for my cough, which had my chest feeling like I was being stabbed in the lungs.  That really was fortunate (the call, not the stabbing cough), as I didn’t have the energy to drag my sick self and an active, but sick toddler to the clinic.  Cough syrup with codeine?  Yes, please!  Sick husband now down for the count, too?  NOOOOOO!!!

Have I mentioned that I miss my mama?  She could/would help me if we were still in Texas.  But way up here in northern Oklahoma, I’m on my own.  I can’t even call anyone to ask for the kind of help I need (watching the munchkin) because the people I know have kids of their own, and they don’t need to be exposed to Alex’s germs.

So, we’ve been in survival mode for much of the month, seeing as every time Alex gets sick, I get sick, too.  Meals?  They’re whatever I can scrounge up.  I keep the freezers pretty well stocked with meals, but we’ve gone through all of them.  I considered myself lucky when I found this in the cabinet and freezer the other day:



On one of the few days we were well enough to go out in public, I found that soup at Big Lots.  It’s good in a pinch.  Add a bag of frozen broccoli and cauliflower, and it becomes a little more filling.  I was feeling very glad that I’d bought that stuff!

At this rate, the only creatures in this house with a good stock of food are the cats.  Their order of prescription cat food arrived earlier this week, and they’re set for the next few months.  And really, I should clarify.  We have food.  The problem is that it’s in ingredient form and not put together.  Normally, that’s the point, not the problem.  But when I’m too sick to cook, that can of beans and that bag of flour aren’t looking so good.

My kid has watched more TV in the past month than in the entirety of his life prior.  That makes me feel like a bad mother, but when I’m so sick that I can barely stay awake, Baby Einstein’s animal video feels like a godsend.  He stands there entranced by all the animals he sees, turning around every few minutes to look at me like, “Did you see that?!  Coolest thing ever!”  And I can laze on the couch, not having to run after him to pull him off of the fireplace or the dining chairs or keep him from smacking the cat with a cat toy.  (Poor baby is so desperate to play with his kitties, but he’s just not coordinated enough to control the cat toy without hitting the cats with it.  It makes him very unpopular with the household felines.)

I’m feeling happy that January is at an end.  Here’s to hoping that February brings better health to our household!


2 Responses to “Survival Mode”

  1. shellakers January 31, 2013 at 10:27 PM #

    You poor baby! You’ve been through the wringer! I can’t believe how high his fever was, 104? Geesh! I sure wish I could do something for you. GREAT BIG VIRTUAL HUGS! lol Good job for hanging in there and taking care of a baby when you’re so sick. You’re making ME want my mommy! lol


  1. Limiting Screen Time | The Oklahoma Texan - July 3, 2013

    […] read the research.  I’m creative and can entertain a small person.  But then came the Great Month of Illness, and TV was suddenly my mothering salvation.  If I’m sick or have a migraine, it’s […]

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