Hello, gentle readers. We’ve been away for a few weeks dealing with some major sick and some major changes. I feel like I’ve shirked writing about four disparate posts, which I will now (probably not that successfully), attempt to coalesce into one:
Oh, the sick. I’m feeling at about 75% today, which in sick speak means that the skies have opened up, birds are singing, and I’m kicking up my heels. We’ve had a real fight of it lately. Louis first came down with some sort of RSV/flu awfulness about three weeks ago, which wound us up in the ER with high fevers that weren’t responding to medication. Subsequent to that, he wound up on his first ever antibiotic for persistent ear infection. And just like his brother before him, he broke out in head to toe amoxicillin rash on day eight of his ten day course. Fun. This was to be followed by another 72 hours of high fevers, sweats, and weight loss. Yesterday’s sick baby visit revealed a severe throat infection, a sinus infection, and an upper chest infection. They put him on a baby azithromycin, which seems to be working well. He’s back among the land of the upright and fussy today! All the while this has been going on, R has had four different bugs (72-hour stomach flu, upper respiratory virus, and two secondary bacterial infections), which have spelled eight days of fever. This was further complicated by the changes I’ll tell you about next. I also had a nasty chest infection (thanks, Zpack!) and Bram fevered for a few days and was out of school this week. I detest being sick. Having sick babies makes me a kind of anxious parent that I am loathe to be. I will be so grateful to have us all back to total health very soon. And I am feeling so much love and compassion for the many parents in our lives whose health cannot be counted upon to rebound quickly (theirs or their children’s). We are a very lucky family (in so many ways).
The wife I should have been during the sick:
I’ll try to do better next go around, which, I pray, is a very long time from now.
So, to the changes underfoot. We have good news! R got a new job! I’m sure she’ll like to be the one to tell you all about it, but I’ll give a brief run-down. We’ve been attending a church that we simply adore for about six months now. This comes after many years of trying and failing to find the right long-term spiritual home for our family. Very recently, an opening came up for the job of Formation Minister at the church, and R’s hat was quickly thrown into the ring. At this point, it’s a thirty-hour/week one-year commitment. However, it has the potential to become a permanent position, which we should know more about over the coming year. The work is rewarding and will really tap into R’s amazing skills as a teacher, a scholar, and a community-builder. The hours are very flexible, so R will still be the boysies’ primary caregiver (with some additional in-home care). And the pay will make a massive impact on our family’s financial picture, which will give me the gift of discernment as to my next career move(s). It’s all come about very quickly, though, and in the midst of the aforementioned sick, so it’s been a deeply intense and exhausting couple of weeks. I am so very proud of my smarty-pants wife. I just know that she’s going to rock this opportunity and that the church is lucky to have someone so talented in this role!
In the midst of all of this, our beloved Bluebird turned one on March 23rd!!! He’s nearly twenty pounds of sweet, grinning, snuggly energy. I swear this child just hurls himself into every experience in life. Whether it’s almost taking an eye out going in for a hug, racing his brother up the stairs, playing “what happens if I poke the cat here?” or “how many nondescript items from the floor can I fit in my mouth at once?” (his personal favorite), he’s always living his life fully present and engaged. It’s been hard to see him who is ordinarily so rambunctious and opinionated be so muted by illness. I’m glad to see him feisting back up again! We kept his birthday low-key this year and enjoyed a series of fun family outings just the four of us (the museum, a special lunch, and frozen yogurt).
Happiest of birthday, our gorgeous Louis Nathaniel!
In the big brother Bram department, things are going quite well. He’s recently begun to spontaneously read and write. While we’ve certainly been working with him on the underlying skills (along with his preschool teachers), the actual execution of the process has been like the flipping of a switch for him. It’s an amazing thing to watch unfold. He’s also been singing with a small children’s choir at church, which he loves. And he’s is still nursing about once a day (sometimes twice, sometimes none). I could never have expected to still be nursing at three years old, but the farther along we’ve gone, the more I can see that, for us (everyone totally needs to decide what’s right for their family), this is a relationship that needs to end on mutually beneficial terms. I trust that he’ll know when it’s the right time. And if that’s too long for me, then there are ways to encourage closure for the both of us. Still, it is so cool to see how nursing has evolved to fit into his big-kid persona. I think nursing is a real touch point for him still, like an old friend. I am grateful and blessed to be able to still provide that comfort to him as he grows and changes on every level.
He loves “milky pads” (the washable nursing pads that I wear). They are like a nursing prize to him and he’ll carry them with him throughout the evening after he’s nursed. I caught this picture of him working in the yard last night with his “milky pad” in his back pocket.