Guys – did you know that there’s a nasty flu bug going around? I could see that you may have missed it … if you live under a rock (or perhaps choose to live an Amish-style life – wait, but then you wouldn’t be reading this, so never mind. You’ve probs heard about it).

A few weeks ago, kids at our elementary school started dropping like flies. I knew it was only a matter of time until I saw one of my worst nightmares – the phone number from school popping up on my phone. I should have guessed it – the timing was impeccable. Derrick had been out of town all week, and was scheduled out of the country for most of the next two (give or take a night in town). So, I trudged to school, grabbed Blair from the nurse’s office – and made a game-time decision to just go ahead and pick up Paige, too. It was a Friday and she’s a third grader – I don’t think they cover World Peace Negotiation Tactics until March this year.

Blair seemed pretty puny most of the weekend and through the beginning of the week. But, her fever never got super-high, and other than a headache and stomachache, she was in decent spirits. I pumped her full of Gatorade and water, gave her lots of screen time, and by Tuesday afternoon she was back to her good ‘ol Honey Badger self. We were in the clear, and she headed back to school on Wednesday.

I remember thinking Saturday evening that it wouldn’t be so bad if Blair’s symptoms were pretty typical of this bug.

Silly, silly mommy. That Saturday afternoon (the day following their retrieval from school), Paige started feeling warm (she had been a little grouchy the day before, but, let’s face it – these kids don’t earn their nicknames “the Ruiners” for nothing). I took her temperature, and sure enough – 100.6. I figured it would be short-lived, but I figured wrong.

*Sidenote here: You want to know what’s an amazing way to start the week? Have two sick, sick kids home from school who are literally fighting about who is more sick, and thus deserves the last blue Gatorade. Also? Have your husband have been out of town the entire week before, with no end in sight of him coming home soon. Add into that rain and snow, a rush to find clean uniforms, a first grader who NEVER wants to go to school and who discovers that her big sister is getting to stay home with her mom. The same person whose uterus, if given the chance, Blair would climb right back into for fear of not ever being close enough at any given moment. Yeah – I think I went through about a pound of coffee.

So, for the next SIX DAYS, Paige proceeded to have a fever. Typically of around 103 or higher. She was a champ, but she felt terrible. We spent most of her days watching Kids Baking Championship, Cake Wars, playing board games and pretty much just hanging out. And maybe doing some homework (what? I’m not a masochist – there’s no way I was letting that work pile up for me to deal with when she got better). Luckily, she never really lost her appetite (thank goodness. Homegirl is hovering at a 12 BMI right now. I know, I know – she CLEARLY gets that from me).

Derrick was actually in town two different nights that week, but his new liver doesn’t take to kindly to strangers (aka, stupid viruses), so he would quickly appear, we would all put on masks, he would dump his dirty laundry (thanks for that, babe), pack a new bag and head over to Dad and Nan’s. Poor guy – sitting in a quiet house in front of their cozy fire. It must have been miserable …

*Another sidenote here: You know what ELSE is fun? When one daughter gets to stay home while the other goes to school. But, the sister getting to go to school gets to do fun things every day since it’s Catholic Schools Week. And EVERY. EFFING. DAY. is a series of multiple fights about NOT wanting to hear about what Paige did with me during the day and NOT wanting to hear about what Blair did at school that was fun. AKA – each child constantly talking about said things to torture their sister. Reading back over this, I may have some mild form of PTSD. I should look into that … 

Things were looking better by Friday – Paige had been fever-free since Thursday afternoon (but I kept her home just in case), so Derrick got to come home. Whew – we were in the clear. The girls were both feeling MUCH better. Case in point: I was on the phone with their Nani Saturday morning, and this conversation happened:

Nani: “What in the WORLD is that?!?!?” (BTWs, this is not at all an uncommon thing for someone to say whilst on the phone with a Feldmann parent)

Me: “Oh, hold on…” Yells at girls, who are currently sitting on/next to me in my bed … “sorry, they were fighting. Blair punched Paige in the face so I needed to send her to her room.”

Nani: “Why did she punch her???”

Me: “Well, Paige asked her what game she was playing on her tablet. The nerve of that one, huh?”

Good Lord, Blair. Dial it down a notch.

Blah, blah, blah – there is a point to this. And that point is that by Sunday mid-afternoon, I realized I was in the full throes of this stupid Influenza. I’ll admit it – I got cocky. I thought I was in the clear, and it’s obvious I wasn’t. I ended up having to go to Dad and Nan’s this time, and I can promise you I was NOT enjoying the quiet and the fire. I felt like I got hit by a truck – and there were probably a few times I was wishing I had.

I’m finally fever free, but still feel like I’m super-hungover without actually getting to have any of the fun that comes with self-inflicted sickness. I haven’t spoken to another grownup other than phone calls, HeyTells and a few brief run-ins with kind souls dropping things off for us (well, actually with their backs – some of them *cough, EJ, cough* literally ran away after dropping things on my porch.).

So, if you see me sometime in the next few days, be patient with me. Try to remember that I haven’t been around grownups in almost two weeks. I miss you, grown-ups.  Treat me like that old grandma who blathers on and on – smile sweetly, pat my head, and send me on my way.  Unless you have the flu. Then you keep your damn hands off me and keep walkin’. We’ll catch up some time this spring.