Musical beds.

by

So. Let’s take it back to that evening of The Fever Of No Known Origin. Snort was incredibly listless and dopey. Coconut was pretty much normal, aside from some fierce sneezes.

We’ve been wrestling with him all day and evening to take medicine. And as far as fluids go? A nurse suggested giving him ice lollies as a ‘great’ way to get fluids in. Coconut and Snort have never had anything resembling sweets before, but we gamely bought some. As they were hanging out in our paddling pool (Snort shivering in a scary sort of way), we offered the ice lollies. No go. These kids would prefer asparagus to ice cream.

So by the time we want to go to bed? We are hot, tired, and worried. The trip to the doctor’s yielded no answers, but we know we’re on high alert for any further rises in his temp.

TMD decides to play nurse for the evening – meaning she’s on ‘Snort duty’ to offer water, milk, cuddles, temperature checks, medicine, etc. I say she and Snort can have the bed, Coconut will sleep in her own bed, and I’ll sleep on the couch.

Phase one: complete. One happy baby girl cuddling her blankets (she has a thang for knitted goods), sleeping soundly in her crib. I’m out here shutting down the computer, when TMD (already looking like a zombie) brings Snort out and asks if they can just be out in the lounge tonight as ‘she knows the territory better.’

Phase two: Somehow I am not taking care of any babies and I have the whole bed to myself. The house is quiet. This lasts until 5 minutes to midnight.

Phase three: I hear a squeak from Coco. I peek in at her, she’s fine. I peek in at TMD and Snort, they are fine.

Phrase four, about 5 minutes after phase three: Snort begins to scream. All out scream. Unconsolably scream. Now, let me get it out there and say neither baby has ever been a screamer. All they need if they are upset is to be picked up and given a ten second cuddle and they are happy and laughing again. They also have no problems with sleep – probably as we never try to put a very awake baby to sleep, but this is the subject for another post.

So this unearthly screaming from Snort is…uh, unearthly. It’s not a pain scream, like we will get sometimes from teething. It is all out screaming, lose-your-voice screaming, apocolypse screaming. I’ve never heard anything like it; it actually hurts my heart. I get out of bed to go see him and TMD, and then Coco wakes up.

Phase five: I’m feeding Coco in my bed. No point in taking her closer to the screaming (despite my desperate need to go see what the fuck is going on and give him a hug) and getting her riled up. She downs a bottle, leans in to me, and is asleep. I decide to put her back in her bed so I can go out into the lounge, but when I walk into her dark room I trip over something, swear, and semi-wake her up. I put her down. Her eyes open wide and look at me. I pick her back up (the ‘oh, fuck it!’ implied) and take her into bed with me.

Snort is still screaming, screaming like the world as we know it is being eaten, bite by painful bite, by mean looking aliens.

Phrase rest-of-the-night: Snort’s screaming continues for at least an hour. I hear TMD singing him his new favourite song (go to youtube and look up ‘feist 1234 sesame street’,yo, it’s gooooooooooood) and apparently dancing around the lounge with him. When she tries to sit down he cries.

Meanwhile, I’m in bed with Coconut. She starts somewhere in the middle of the bed, and I’m very near her. The second I put her down she grabs for her blanket and falls asleep. And then she presses against me. Full body pressing. It’s  not that she is lying next to me and our skin is touching. No. It’s like even while she is asleep, every cell in her body yearns to fuse with mine. Sort of like trying to stand upright in the middle of a river with a fast current.

If I move away – a milimetre, a centimetre, an inch – she immediately follows. It is never relenting. Perhaps she is trying to seek comfort from the screaming one room away that is now so epically loud I fully expect Social Services to ring the doorbell any second, perhaps I am emitting some sort of baby attracting pheromone, I don’t know. This delicate dance continues until I am balancing on the edge of the bed, hanging onto the sheets on the other side of her to try to gain some purchase and not fall (all the while trying not to crush her with my arm).

Sidenote: We love cosleeping. Our bed is quite small, and it’s next to impossible to cosleep with two adults and two babies in said bed. These days, both babies are hoggy sleepers and it is hard to fit more than one adult in with either baby.

Everything falls quiet. Everyone falls asleep.

About two hours later the screaming starts up again. All in all, from what my sleep deprived brain can recall, Snort had three horrible periods of being awake for long stretches of time, each screamier than the last. He was so hot to the touch it was terrifying.

The next morning, Coconut and I played in bed for awhile. We then came into the lounge. TMD and Snort were passed out on the couch (yes, blah blah, sleeping on the couch with a baby is bad, blah blah, I know!). Coconut and I looked at each other and played some more on the floor. Eventually the other two woke up, and his fever had broke.

It’s now the following day. Fever is still gone, but he’s got a rattling chest, snotty nose, and coughs. Coconut still seems okay aside from the odd sneeze. Neither baby has The Fever (thankyouthankyouthankyou).

I wonder how long it will take for some semblance of routine and rhythm to return to the house. My original guess was Tuesday, but that was before Snort didn’t go sleep properly till like 1 am last night. Awww yeeeeeaaaah.

Today’s gonna be awesome.

That being said, it’s also some good awesome mixed in with the hopeless awesome. The second I finished typing this (having no clue when the morning nap would happen as everyone slept late after Snort’s semi-sick debacles last night), Snort crawled over, pulled up on my knee, and looked at his bouncy chair.

Did I mention he naps there? Yes, my ten month old was effectively saying, ‘ Yo, Mom, I’m tired.’ I looked at Coconut who had Bunny in one hand and her blankie in the other, sucking her thumb. She was all ready to sleep, too.

MY KIDS ARE AWESOME, MY KIDS BEING SICK IS NOT AWESOME. IT IS SCARY AND SUCKS.

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