That's how Matt answers the phone; "Hello, House of Plague". He came home from the hospital when it got slow to give me a break from the kids. (My hero, spending his break from sick hospital patients to take care of his sick kids). Most normal moms would grab a razor, body scrub and head for the bathroom. Not Slacker Mom. I grab my camara, my card reader, and head for the laptop. It hasn't been that bad, really. It would have driven me crazy if I was one of those over-achiever type A moms. But I gave that up two kids ago. Now that I've made peace with my inner slacker mom, I'm actually really good at sick days.
Maya took the prize for the highest fever: 105.6! Now some people would worry that their kids might have a seizure with fevers that high. If Matt wasn't a doctor and I wasn't a nurse, our kids would have been in the ER. After getting a urinalysis, chest xray, blood draw and a lumbar puncture, we would have heard those dreaded words: "It's viral". I hate having to tell people that after they've dragged their kids into clinic. It makes them feel so much better when I say, "I could prescribe antibiotics, but it will not make it better. In fact, they may experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, rash and possibly an allergic reaction."
Today Maya brought me a book she wanted me to read. It was the guide to Wii MarioKart. Now anyone that knows me knows I don't read instruction manuals. I take that back, I did read one instruction manual. It was the idiot guide to my camara. It has big pictures and not too many words. 1. Take your camara out of the box. 2. Attach the wrist strap. I'm not joking. Anyway, back to the Wii manual. So for kicks I flipped through the book and began reading the Spanish section. On the second paragraph I realized it was warning that playing video games may cause seizures. Did you know that 1 out of 4000 people can have a seizure while playing video games?
I just looked up febrile seizures on Up to Date. It said that 2-4% of children under the age of 5 experience seizures with fever. That's 2 to 4 out of 100. Okay, I'm no math whiz, but according to my calculations, children under the age of 5 are 40 times more likely to have a seizure during a high fever than while playing video games. Isn't that reassuring? My advice to you: don't let children under the age of five play video games while they have a fever! That's why they pay me the big bucks. (Grin).
Here's my Slacker Mom Guide to sick days:
1. Have Costco two packs of Tylenol and Motrin in the house. If they have vomiting AND fever, ask the pharmacist for Tylenol suppositories. Our Safeway pharmacy keeps them in the fridge in the pharmacist. God did not prep you with years of diaper changing and butt wiping for no reason. The look on their face when you slip that suppository in is priceless. Kind of like the look your dog gives you when the veterinarian pulls out the rectal thermometer. (You're going to put that WHERE?)
2. Learn how to make a good batch of chicken noodle soup. If you think cooking is for fat people with French accents, stock up on Progresso soup. Always have a stash of juice, popsickles, ginger ale and saltines. Oh, and a good digital thermometer, preferably the ear kind. The one we got at Costco is going on 8 years now.
3. If you don't have a large collection of kids movies, it helps to have Nickelodian or the Disney station. Sure you can read them books or rent books on tape. But this is the Slacker Mom guide, not the Super Mom guide. I saw a great movie on Nickelodian this morning called "Gym Teacher". It was hysterical. "Cinch up your jock straps and tighten up your training bras!". Even the commercials are funny. Now I can't decide if I want to take a Disney family cruise or a Nickelodian family cruise. Two words: Daycare Included. I can't wait for Madagascar 2 to come out on video. The Two-pack has the latest short film from everyone's favorite undercover secret agent, cargo ship hijacking, explosives experts and mission impossible style penguins. I saw a commercial for these colorful bendable sticks that these kids are using to make incredible art projects. I said to Riley, all you would make out of them is balls. Riley said "And Chris would make the wrong kind of balls." I love my boys. They may not be creative, but they keep me laughing.
4. Finally, think of it as your excuse to take a break from the daily grind. No PTA meetings, no hockey practice, no guilt trips. (Did you ever stop to think that maybe illness is God's gift to women who do too much?) Grandma, Nanna and Matt took turns staying with the kids so I could do errands and get fresh air.
We had a big snow storm the last two days. Today the sun came out and the kids got outside to play for a little while. It's like the light at the end of the tunnel. I'm already scheming how I'm going to get a third week of slacking off out of this. Do you think Matt would fall for this? "It's an adult version of this virus, Matt, I have the headache and fatigue, but no fever!"