In Sickness and in Health

Has it really been 9 days since the last post? And that wasn’t a proper post either. Sigh.

We’ve just slid into the weekend after the first week of school. But the week before that the children were tag-teaming fevers and I was sickish most of the week until I tested positive for the flu on Thursday. On the same day, Barrett was diagnosed with an ear infection and cellulitis (the area around his eye was red and puffy–presumably related to the ear infection). The doc (not our regular doctor) prescribed Tamiflu for the family for which we paid a small fortune. By mid-afternoon, Derrick came home sick from work as well.

The following day Barrett went in for a check-up, and since his eye was about the same, the doctor suggested we go to the ER. We begged for a less expensive option, and ended up seeing a specialist at the University Hospital where we were told that cellulitis can take a long time to resolve–typically more than 24 hours to see an improvement. Happy with the confirmation that the doctor had put us on the right path, we went home and were sick all afternoon.

As tough as the week/weekend was, it could have been much worse. Liberty stayed strong, and I only felt miserable every other day. Derrick was over it by Monday. Barrett grinned and giggled all the way through it. What a child! I think the massive quantities of Vitamin C we’d been consuming must have helped.

This semester I’m teaching one course (a fantastic group of students so far), doing a research assistantship with the Campus Writing Program, taking two professionalization courses, and writing my dissertation. I’m 2,700 words into my second body chapter. With my workload so full, the kids are both in full-time daycare. The adjustment of leaving Barrett there all day has been harder than it was when Liberty started. (My last baby!) They both, of course, are doing fine. It’s me that feels anxiety about it. I really, really want to crank out a draft of each chapter by the end of the semester. I feel as though that’s the only way I can justify the expense of daycare.

Tonight I was planning to spend a few hours on my diss once everyone was in bed, but my brain simply will not cooperate. Writing a blog post is about as good as it gets.

And lest I forget, today Barrett is six months old–halfway to his first birthday! Son, you are a joy beyond anything we could have imagined! You have rolled over a time or two, but it was more an accident than anything intentional. However, you are an expert kicker. When you lay flat on the floor, you kick like a wild thing. In the bath tub, you kick the water with joyful intensity. Bouncing in your johnny-jump-up is your favorite trick. You can’t sit in my lap without almost bouncing out of my arms.

You charm all you meet. People who normally have nothing more than a nod for me stop to hold full-length conversations with you. It’s as if they truly believe you smile especially for them.

You love to eat–breast milk, formula, egg yolks, vegetable puree–you can’t get enough. You love kisses. Nothing delights you more than smooches on one cheek and then the other. You love your toys, reaching for your yellow duck, grinning like it’s an old friend. You love music, not in the background, but loud enough to fill the room.

At first you only recognized your daddy and me, then slowly your sister’s face seemed to grow on you. One day you grinned when you saw her, and now at the end of every day when we are all reunited, you are all eyes for her, loving her attention, her loud, ungainly BOO! in your face. Seeing her dote on your and you soaking up the attention reminds us one more time why we are so happy to have two kids.

We love you, Barrett, and part of us wishes you could stay like this forever.

Sick but happy baby Barrett in our messy front hall.


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