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Jun 02

He still cleans the vomit

Marc and I have always had a division of labor.   I’m proud to call myself a feminist, but also well aware that I tend towards a very traditional definition of femininity and motherhood.  Marc kills the bugs, handles the trash and yes, cleans the puke.  When the kids were little, it was a little more evenly balanced.  I was usually holding the sick kid, so I’d aim them at me, trying to keep the mess off the bed (it’s a lot easier to switch out my t-shirt than it is to clean all the bedding).  Then I’d launch into soothing and calming down the sick kid, while he handled the clean-up.  But the kids grew up.  They puke in the toilet, mostly, now.  A bucket when they’re really sick.  And sometimes, they don’t make it to the bathroom and throw up all over the kitchen.

Tonight (or this morning) was one of those occasions.  And just for variety – instead of Sammy puking, it was Julianna.  She’s been complaining of her stomach hurting off and on over the past few weeks.  I assumed it was more about her brother having stomach problems, and a unconscious desire to get a little attention.  She was fine yesterday, maybe a little fussy.  We went out to dinner last night for Marc’s birthday and she ate well.  Fell asleep easily enough.  But she was crawling into my bed at 4:30 this morning, complaining of a nightmare.  She started talking about her stomach hurting soon afterwards, and by 5:30, she was running for the bathroom and didn’t make it.

And following along with our pattern, I was up with Julie, holding her hair back and rubbing her back.  I tucked her into the couch, and sat next to her while my poor husband got up and mopped the floor and chased the dog away from trying to “help” with clean-up.  While it used to be more equitable, it’s now totally on him, and I’ve got the easy part.

In other news… Jessie’s off for her end-of-the-year field trip at a mini-golf and ice cream place.  We’re in a flurry of the June activities for her – waiting to find out if she got in at the summer camp, finishing up all of her end of year projects.  She’s in 8th grade next year.  And that’s so over-the-top crazy that I can’t quite grasp it.  How is it that I’m old enough to have an 8th grader?  Sam is really doing well – still only eating three things, but just the fact that he’s eating is huge.  He’s on a new anti-acid med too, and that seems to help a lot.   We’re still trying to get a handle on the vision thing – how much more are his eyes going to improve?  What does it mean if they don’t?   Because he’s feeling better, the fact that he has trouble seeing is more of an issue.  He spends far too much time starting at that little kindle screen, but we’re making progress.  Slow, slow progress.  He hates leaving the house, and hates going places.  How much of that is the anxiety, how much of that is that he has trouble seeing, and how much of it is that he’s always hated going shopping or running errands, or going to family parties – I don’t know.  I don’t know how hard to push, when to give him space and when to force it.  There’s this line somewhere, and I don’t ever really know if I’m erring on the side of asking too much of him or not enough.

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