Hello? Anybody there?
I know, it’s been a while. Again.
What’s going on over here, you ask? Well, hmmm…
Fall has come, in all its midwestern glory, and we are soaking up days that fluctuate between warm and crisp with cool nights and gorgeous trees everywhere we look. Sadly for me, the mold count is off the charts this fall, which is a significant allergy trigger of mine. This has meant that my allergies have been out of control for about 10 days now, only slightly mitigated by a regimen that includes (but is not limited to): Benadryl, Claritin, sinus rinses (yes, the Neti pot), a full bag of cough drops every 24 hours, gallons of water and lemon tea with honey, and multiple doses of Robitussin at night. I have finally slept through the night without coughing for the last two nights, which is a huge relief. My voice was hoarse from coughing for eight days, but finally today sounds closer to normal.
During this period of time, Matt had two of his many trips this month and so was away most of last week. I survived a solo 3-day weekend with the kids and the dog last week while feeling ill and having no voice. Thanks to some awesome neighbors who took the kids to their house to play one afternoon and brought over some excellent soup another night, I had bright spots in my week that got me through. I took one day off work but couldn’t afford to take more than that. The lack of paid sick and vacation days is one significant downside in working for oneself. (It’s right up there with spending many hours of the weekend resubmitting claims to an insurance company that has been holding onto a lot of my income without any communication as to why.) I was grateful to have a competent intern who could do a lot of talking for me last week and a business manager who could team up with me to get the insurance claims in again as quickly as possible.
But today I find myself coughing much less and with about 80% of my voice intact, just in time to take a day at home with Baxter, who has signs of strep throat and needs to see the doctor. Luckily it was one of my work-from-home days, and I can get a lot done while he snoozes and watches TV.
All is not lost here, Wonderfriends, I promise.
On Friday night, despite my raspy voice, I bravely joined a group of talented actors in an informal living room reading of the play You Can’t Take it With You, reading the part of Mrs. Kirby in addition to stage directions. I am by no means an actor, not having been on a stage since 1991, but my friend who hosted the reading needed extra people as the cast was so large, and I was happy to come help out. It was a lot of fun, and really interesting to see how relevant this 75-year old play was to the current economic climate. And funny. Damn, is it funny. I’m not gonna lie, it probably set my voice recovery back a few notches, but it was worth it to have some fun and be in the company of such talent.
And over the weekend, although I didn’t participate in too much, it was fun to hear about the strides the boys made in their swimming and rock-climbing classes, and the fun Lyle had at a birthday party and Baxter had at a book club meeting with friends yesterday. Baxter and I spent a lot of time together with his school supplies, organizing and labeling everything to help him keep track of all those folders, notebooks, and pencils on his own. (Clue: one big, organized binder.) This was satisfying to us both in a nerdly way.
Last night we played musical beds. Baxter had taken up residence in the master bedroom during the afternoon, and was deeply asleep all evening, so I took the guest room with Lyle, whose primary dream in life is to be with me all the time. Since he didn’t want to sleep in the lower level without his brother, I took him with me. He told me it was his “dream come true”. I don’t know why that child wasn’t born into an attachment parenting household with a stay-at-home parent. Matt ended up on the couch in the living room instead of sleeping with Captain Germy in our room. The dog was very, very confused.
Before bed, Lyle and I cuddled on the couch to read (with a few amusing visits from Gus) and then snuggled up in the guest room bed together. We took a few silly, blurry photos of ourselves. It was a lovely way to end the weekend.