Caroline so rarely gets sick - or rather, she so rarely stays sick for more than an hour or two - that I did not have the heart to move her back to her own room last night as she coughed and coughed and coughed and then got up to cough/vomit and then coughed some more. I did, however, ask her this morning why she found it necessary to kick me so much while I was soothing her with cold water and letting her share my pillow. It was a rhetorical question, really, so I was surprised when she answered, "Oh I kept kicking because I was uncomfortable."
"Then why didn't you go back to your own room?"
She looked at me, all limpid eyed, and breathed, "Because I wanted to be near you."
And I said, "Yeah, ok, that's nice but you kicked me so much that I wound up sleeping somewhere else."
Caroline smiled and said, "Um hmmm. I noticed that. But your bed is so warm and cozy and your blanket is softer than mine. And I was much less uncomfortable once I wasn't so smooshed."
So I taught her the ten in the bed song
(There were ten in the bed and the little one said
Roll over! I'm crowded!
So they all rolled over and one fell out
There were nine in the bed et cetera
At the end of the song there is one in the bed and the little one says, "That's better")
and Caroline liked it very much indeed.
I realized around four am that she was not going to be going to preschool (confirmed when she was still sound asleep in my bed a good forty minutes after school started) and when I went up to get Edward I noted his nose was pretty gunky.
As I walked into his room he looked up and said, "Oh. Morning! I thought you were Caroyine coming to get me. Where is she?"
I said, "She's asleep in my bed. She's sick."
Edward immediately said, "Sick? Is today a preschool day? I'm sick too!" and then he coughed a couple of times for emphasis. "I have yots of coughs. I can't go to school because I don't want to get my friends sick."
I thought yeah, right, what nobility, and was amused when not ten minutes later I went to rouse Patrick and discovered he was all hoarse and raspy.
"I... I don't think I should go to school," he croaked. "I don't want everyone in my class to get what I have."
I don't mean to brag but really how do I do it? Raising two such thoughtful, considerate, altruistric children. Both of them willing to put aside their own educational needs for the common weal. I am simply bursting with pride.
Transparent junior cons aside I had already decided that any time Patrick starts a hint of anything upper respiratory this winter I am going to keep him home for at least a day and force him to rest with fluids and frequent saline flushes of the head. I keep telling him that he is NOT going to get a sinus infection again. He IS NOT. And he says, "Mom you're creeping me out" but he obedient swallows his naturopathic potions and takes his probiotics and submits to the neti pot and snorts his Flonase.
All of which is to say that I wound up with three kids at home today out of which only one was genuinely sick and as per usual Caroline's ne plus ultra immune system kicked in and she was sunny by lunchtime. For a while they did their own stuff and then they got together and things were loud loud loud and then... quiet. Too quiet.
But you know what? Sometimes, even if you just know that wherever they are the children are using permanent marker on the walls or dyeing the cat purple, sometimes you don't care. It's like those few minutes of silence are worth having to replace all of the dry wall on the main floor.
Eventually I called "Patrick? Where are you guys? What are you doing?"
He called back, "I'm just decorating the twins."
And I said, "Oh. OK!" and then "Wait. What?"
Ohhhhhh decorating the twins.
Right. Very good. Carry on.
PS I should have realized as Patrick leaned against my back to look at my computer that his gratifying but unusual interest in an ancestry page hid a more nefarious purpose.
They adorned my backside as well.
Children are so... juvenile.