One Couple's Stumblings Through Parenthood and Marriage

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Genna, the Seawitch, and the Recliner

We do our best to have our kids watch very little television. But when you wake up early on a Saturday morning to chaos, Mr. TV has to step up and share the parenting load.
It all began with the coughing and crying of Julia. The poor baby has been fighting a cold. To win this fight, she uses whatever is at her disposal, which mainly involves crying, late nights, and early mornings.
After soothing her, we turned to Genna, who had just begun crying. We walked into the twins' bedroom and were assaulted by vomit-stink. Yes, Genna had puked all over her crib and had apparently gone to great lengths to ensure it got on everything. Her crib sheets, the bumper, her horsey and baby, her blankets, the crib railing, the floor, and of course, her pajamas and hair, were all covered in gooey chunkiness.
After we bathed her, twice, Annie and I turned to one another and knew at once that it was Dora Time. That little monkey-friended Dora The Explorer is one of our favorite cartoon people. Her effect on our children is a double-edged sword. She turns their brains to 25% power, which is bad when you want to encourage reading, but wonderful when you want to take your daughter's mind off of her roiling tummy.
Once Dora was over, we had to bring in the cavalry. We gave Kate and Genna a choice of movies. They agreed on The Little Mermaid. Ariel, Sebastianen, and Ursula the Seawitch entertained them while I cradled Genna in the recliner, with a steel bowl at the ready. She ended up filling this bowl four separate times. I was impressed at how well I managed to catch all of her up-chucks, and not vomit myself. Annie worked the assembly line: taking dirty bowl, replacing it with new bowl, and cleaning out old bowl each time.

Genna has now been sleeping for three hours. I hope this is a healing sleep - a slumber from which she will awaken fresh and relatively healthy. You see, we have my company Christmas party to attend tonight. Genna's condition will determine whether or not we go.
Despite the grossness and misery of the morning, there are some positives. Annie and I get to rediscover how well we work as a team. And, you remember how important it is to you that your kids are comfy and loved - even if it means sitting through Saturday morning cartoons, watching your 39th viewing of The Little Mermaid, and holding your daughter's hair back while she unloads her stomach contents. One more upside - I am so glad this is happening this weekend, and not next.

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