Thursday, March 1, 2012

Four Weeks In


Week Four is not going all that well, people. 

Before beginning my existence as a full-time pregnant person over the last four years, I used to run marathons.  One thing you figure out pretty quickly when running 26.2 miles at a time is that you really can't afford for even small things to go wrong. A simple hiccup in any other context, like say a small blister on your heel, can ruin your chances of reaching the finish line if it happens to you during the big race.

Unfortunately, I mention this because of its relevance to my current situation. 

This week has been feeling a lot like hitting Mile 16 with a burgeoning side cramp. As it happens, when you have a three-year-old, a twenty-month-old and a new baby, there's not a lot of room for error either.

Our problems began on Monday, as they so often do, with the vomiting. My phone rang late in the morning and my heart sank as the caller ID let me know that Snood's teacher was on the line. She informed me that Snood had puked without warning after snack time and asked me to come and collect him post-haste.

I bundled the two younger kids into the car and somehow managed to maneuver them both in their 18-wheeler-sized double stroller into Snoodie's classroom and get all three back to our house. As I pulled into my driveway I find myself proudly patting myself on the back for managing an improvised outing with my whole brood without major incident.

This thought had barely formed, however, when a cold rain began to fall without warning. Then the boys decided that they didn't want to get out of the car and mounted a two-pronged revolt against my efforts to extract them. Moments after making it in the front door, I realized that since I hadn't been expecting to have all the kids home, I didn't have anything for lunch. This meant I was going to have to wrestle the children back into the car and head for the supermarket. 

By the time I'd returned home from this second outing and coaxed all three kids into the house, the lot of us were soaked and cold and a clear majority of us were crying loudly.

On Tuesday, things continued to go rapidly downhill.

Snoodie split his head open at 8am on Tuesday morning, necessitating a trip to the ER. First thing on Wednesday, the all-family diarrhea arrived.

I won't burden you with every gory detail of the week, but suffice it to say that it's Thursday and we are limping badly. Did I mention that my husband is headed to the hospital today for some previously-scheduled major surgery?

For now, I'm trying to concentrate on the lesson of those long-ago marathons, which is that when things start to go awry mid-race you really only have two choices:
  • you can drop out, limp off the road, lie down on the sidewalk and start wailing loudly until someone comes to remove you to the medical tent

  • you can make adjustments to your pace, change your breathing and then dig deep, gut-check and resolve to just keep moving until things get a little easier

I'm really working on option the second for the time being.

That being said, if you do happen upon me lying on the side on the road and moaning in an unseemly fashion, please don't hesitate to call someone to cart me off. I'd hate to be in anyone's way.