Pop Quiz #2 (Or: Parenting Paranoia)
Q) What could possibly be better than having a Black Widow Spider living in your bathroom window frame?
A) Having TWO Black Widow Spiders living in your bathroom window frame! After calling pest-control to see what they suggested ("spray around the windows with Windex to keep them out"...well shoot, no one told me there were benefits to actually cleaning the house! I wonder if it works on grumpy kids...) we've decided to take my mom's approach instead and give them their own room.
And since we are running a deadly-spider refugee camp behind our toilet (Don't they say: Keep your friends close and your enemies closer?), I have decided it's time to set some ground rules. So I have taken some of our normal house rules and simply applied them to our new "friends".
Q) What is even better than housing two Black Widow Spiders in your bathroom?
Rule #1 NO BITING
Rule #2 No climbing in bed with us
Rule #3 No roaming the house after lights-out
Rule #4 No mating so long as you live under our roof
Rule #5 Once you're too big for the house, we'll see you out...(by way of the toilet if you aren't careful!)
A) Housing two unidentified "bugs" in your two youngest children all weekend. YAY US!
Not only are we granting sanctuary to the spiders, we have also become a certified infirmary. And although one might think that having 4 kids would exclude me from the occasional nutty-paranoid-parent-of-sick-child-syndrome, ah, think again. I was first put on alert when Lily told us she needed a band-aid for her tummy-ache:
"A band-aid won't help your tummy-ache, Lily," we told her.
"My tummy-ache hurts and is bleeding," she replied. My mind raced: An ulcer maybe? An intestinal bleed? She could be the first 2-year old on the planet who is THAT in tune with her body, right? (Uh, wrong, as I twirl my finger around my ear a few times and point to, um, myself....)
As Lily awoke screaming and inconsolable at 11:00 p.m. (and 2 a.m. and 3:30 a.m.), she looked to be suffering from some combination of ruptured appendix, UTI, meningitis and double ear infection caused by the hand-foot-and-mouth disease that she was exposed to earlier in the week. The internet surely confirmed it all and I spent much of the wee hours of the morning traipsing between feeding a feverish Liam and holding Lily upright to keep her ears from hurting while poking at her tummy to see if it caused extreme pain, trying to force her to use the potty to check out her urine (this is totally recommended while trying to potty train a toddler) and sticking a flashlight in her mouth to check for sores (I'd be screaming too if I were her!). The only thing I can say for sure is she has had a long 3 days of fever, poor appetite and restless sleep. (Bonus points for an accurate diagnosis!)
On the other hand, Liam, competing for the happiest-infant-in-the-universe award, has maintained his sunny disposition, even as his temp has soared into the stratosphere and the sweet, Roseola-looking rash has spread up his torso and neck and down both arms. (Oh, except for this morning when he woke up fussy and didn't stop crying until, um, this evening. But hey, who's counting?) I think he just knew he was destined to "cry-it-out" over the weekend and was able to will himself ill. He IS, after all, amazing like that.
Extra Credit Q) How many kids does it take to pull a bathroom door off its hinge?
A) One. And she's only 2. And sick. But very, very strong. Come to think of it, I think we might put her in charge of our refugees.