One for the Record Books

The last two weeks have been crazy.

As I was planning my trip to visit Mother, Clara woke up in the middle of the night vomiting. She was fine by Saturday, so I went ahead and finished the skirt (and made a tote bag) and we boarded the plane on Sunday.

It was very good to be with Mother in those last few days. I was very sad to leave on Thursday morning, but at that point the hospice nurses thought she still had a few days left. I figured I could go home, check in with my family and then turn around and come back if need be.

That didn't prove to be the case since Mother died Thursday evening.

So I spent the entire following weekend jumping every time the phone rang, loosing my temper without much warning and generally being an unpleasant emotional mess.

Things eased up once I knew what the funeral plans were and we could start to work toward something rather than hang in limbo hundreds of miles away from my family. Funeral the coming Friday - we all pile into the van and drive down on Thursday.

Then my throat started to hurt and continued to hurt so that I had to take ibuprofen just to function. And Peter started to get these little pimply spots on his face. I just figured he was giving himself pimples from picking/touching his nose and mouth. On Wednesday when I picked him up from school he had two little spots that hadn't been there that morning.

That night I took him to the doctor. The clinic our doctor is a part of has evening drop-in clinic hours hosted by one doctor or another every evening. On a whim I asked to see the doctor myself, too.

Peter turned out to have impetaigo (?) and the doctor said to do what I was doing and to gargle with salt water. He also took a throat culture just in case. We got the meds for Peter and made preparations to leave town the next morning.

Part of our preparations was to get the rooms on the second floor and the living room ready for carpet cleaners to come and for a new short-term housemate to move in. I was feeling lousy enough that we were only able to get the housework done - we left the packing for the next morning.

So with general life and packing for five people we didn't leave our house until nearly noon. We waited to cross the border for at least half an hour since our favourite little border crossing only had one window open. Then we planned to stop at a mall in Bellingham to eat lunch and purchase and activate a pre-paid cell phone to use in the states. We left the mall around 3:30 after a nearly-four-year-old's tantrum, a pokey and messy meal of rice and teriyaki, a messy diaper change, and (supremely) the purchase of a pre-paid cell phone that needed to be charged for FIVE HOURS before use. I cried.

We finally got to Dad's house shortly after nine and managed to get the kids to bed by nearly eleven.

The next morning, we were all getting ready for the funeral. David was giving the kids baths. He pulled Clara out of the tub, put the towel around her to dry her off and she promptly vomited. So David stayed at Dad's house while the rest of us went to Mother's funeral. As it turned out, CLara was done vomiting by the time we left for the funeral.

The funeral was lovely. An old friend of mine from high school came - that was great. The graveside service was silly and impromptu and cold and windy. A nice combination to the more formal funeral service.

We came back to Dad's house (where the rest of the family would shortly be showing up for food, wine and conversation) and David reminded me about the throat culture the doctor in Vancouver took on Wednesday. I called him and found out that my horrid sore throat was, in fact, strep throat. **cue circus music**

We then proceeded to perform the act I like to call "Trying to Find a Doctor or Clinic on a Friday Evening in Portland" I did finally find one, and went, thinking it would be like the clinics in Vancouver where you just show up and wait for one of the doctors to see you. No. This one required setting an appointment in advance (but on the same day). I wasn't up for waiting for two hours for the last booking of the day since all of my family was at Dad's house and I had missed all that time with family right after Mother died. So I went back.

This morning I went back to the clinic (having made an appointment for this morning after they closed last night) and picked up a prescription for atibiotics. Most of the day today we have just hung out here at Dad's by ourselves. This morning Dad and Peter and Lucy took Dad's dog for a walk and a trip to the playground. This afternoon David took the kids to a bakery for a treat while I got some rest.

We intend to get the kids down to bed early (in fifteen or twently minutes), get all the rest of our gear packed, and be ready to leave Portland by nine tomorrow morning. Here's hoping.

So, to recap: vomiting, death, impetaigo, phone needing to be charged,vomiting, funeral, strep throat, circus hoops for meds.



doris said…
ugh. sorry there were so many germs around to add to a trying time. hope the trip back was uneventful.
Lindsay T said…
Wow. I'm exhausted just reading this post. I can't even imagine how you must feel...
Michael said…
Wow indeed. I think your short recap needs to include new housemates soon.

I hereby withdraw all comments about the difficulty of getting a car registered and insured in the US after having been registered in Canada.

And good idea about getting a second phone for use in the states. Outside of the initial charging, that must have been helpful.

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