In the past two weeks I have missed the annual concert band festival, my grandmother's birthday, my stepdad's birthday, four sessions of Playcentre, and a music school concert. I have traded these things for being sneezed on, cried at, and spending my days saying "cover your mouth when you cough".
Also, despite a husband bed-ridden with tonsillitis, we managed to prepare for and pass yet another house inspection. It's been so fun.
I've spent hours in the middle of the night dealing with a distraught daughter, inconsolable at the discovery that a blocked nose means she can't suck her thumb. Snotty Finn was hard to settle, and suddenly bedtime was after 11 each night.
Thankfully, we're on the mend, but I'm exhausted. More than that, I'm lonely.
I'm not a gregarious person, and in fact I generally find being in groups of people stressful. But I need to see faces other than the booger-encrusted ones of my children. I need to talk about something other than tea parties, potties, and my eldest's latest interest, mining.
I feel like the guy in the Get Better Work Stories ad. Mind you, some of my recent "work stories" have been pretty funny, in a "Oh, man, really?" sort of way.
#3: The "no biggie" tantrum
I don't even remember what Vieve originally wanted, but she misheard my casual "No biggie" as "No bikkie". NO BIKKIE? VIEVE SMASH!
#2: The "tuba ice-cream" tantrum
We survived an entire grocery shopping trip until they saw the freezer by the checkouts. Vieve threw an almighty strop because she wanted "a tuba ice-cream". I guess that's like a Trumpet, but bigger. *
#1: The "I peed in the fridge" tantrum
Finn was apparently attacked by a sneaky little wee while he was getting out a bottle of milk. He was absolutely distraught by the fact that he peed in the fridge. Thankfully, it was mostly on the edge and the floor. Still, it's been a while since my fridge has been cleaned so thoroughly.
I'm so glad we're feeling better. It's Playcentre that I've missed most, particularly because we're now into school holidays and another two weeks without it. I'm very careful about not taking potentially infectious children. With the staggered onset of the illness, I've continually had one or two relatively well and restless children to entertain, while stuck at home. It's been challenging.
A very popular activity has been making strings of beads, using big, blunt needles. It's also proved a good way to introduce the twins to the concept of bargaining and trading. They handled the big needles so well that they even got to try sewing.
We brought our groceries home in identical small cardboard boxes, and taped them shut to make big blocks for towers and walls. They smash satisfyingly when you crash trucks into them. Big pavement chalk has been fun, too. Xander turned the path to the clothesline into a board game. I tried a new recipe for "giant bubbles", we did lots of drawing, and we read lots of books.
I've been feeling really quite isolated and miserable. Being stuck at home makes your world seem very small. I think we'll make the most of the holidays to get out and about now that we're mostly well.
What do you do when you're stuck at home, especially when not all of your family is ill?
* I have not forgotten the PG competition! A winner has been determined, but we're having some technical difficulties with contact details. Watch the Facebook page for updates!