There are some sick puppies in the next room. As in three kids barking away with croup in their beds. Me, I've got a headache and a sore back, and I'm annoyed that in all m y school holiday planning, I forgot to factor in the inevitable bloody vacation flu.
Teddy has been worrying us for a fortnight with his asthma, which has ramped up, day by day. The cold aggravates it, so he's been wandering about with a hot-water bottle tucked down the front of his puffy 'asthma coat'. And by 'wandering', I mean 'hopped up to the goolies on Ventolin and loony as all hell'.
Yesterday, his cough worsened and worsened. Keith and Georgie had both gone down with a throaty cold virus. George had kept us up all night needing in the rocking chair, and then partying in the bed between us. When she would sleep for a stretch, Ted would throw off his blankets, get cold and activate his asthma. Keith, who is usually great at midnight kid-wrangling, was dead to the world. By morning, I was a wreck. I checked my email in the morning, thought my own witchy hair was a spider that had dropped on my face, and slapped myself in the nose. At the coffee shop, the girl asked me 'Name?'and I started at her for a good four seconds before I retrieved the information.
Ted spiralled downwards throughout the day. Keith was working in bed while Georgie slept and the big kids and I watched 'How It's Made' on Netflix (our new favourite show). Ted's cough became more and more frequent and I held him on my lap and tried not to panic as he struggled to breathe. When he threw up, I made the call. Hospital time.
I stuck my head in to break the news to Keith. He was buried under blankets on a conference Skype, and he muted the other eggheads while I told him I was taking Ted to emergency.
I cleaned up the worst of the spew, threw a tea-towel over the spot, grabbed a book for Ted and headed out the door. Teddy begged 'Don't watch how toilets are made, Ivy' as we left. Ivy looked thrilled to be left with full control of the remote and no supervision.
The hospital run was scary, as they always are. Ted fell asleep or passed out as we got near the hospital and I had trouble waking him up. After a few boring and frustrating and miserable hours, they loaded him up on Steroids and Ventolin and home we went, grabbing a pizza on the way.
Back at the house, Keith had been struggling to manage the kids while lying in front of the heater with his eyes closed inventing 'challenges' for Ivy like 'make some toast and bring it to your sister.'
When Ted and I staggered in, George had been pouring milk all over the dining table in a toddler version of Weet-Bix that did not involve a bowl. It was carnage.
It's taken me all day to restore order, and right at the end, my computer dropped and smashed its screen, so not only do I have to try and write using the TV, but I can't even go to bed now and zone out by watching Sister Wives on Netflix.
Er me gord. School holidays suck.