While at work -- I am a server at a local restaurant, and I absolutely love it :) -- my husband (whom from now on shall be named The Rustic Knight) surprised me by stopping in for lunch with our three year old (to be named Knight In Training, aka Kit -- which is so perfect, for my husband loves Knight Rider). They had just finished grocery shopping and playing at the park, it was Sunday and I had already been at work for four and a half hours with six to go. His timing could not have been more perfect! It was the lift I needed to carry me through the rest of my shift.
The downside? My son was showing signs of a cold.
After picking me up from work around 8:30 p.m., The Rustic Knight and I took turns nursing our sick child throughout the night. To give my husband a reprieve, I took the first shift upon arriving home. This involved medicine, wiping Kit's nose frequently, helping him to stay in an inclined position, and much cuddling. The kind of cuddling that involves wrapping my arms around him as if I am his blanket; though, he must have his blanket. He began to fever, we drew a bath, our son was not happy once he entered. We made him stay in to drop his temperature and clear his sinuses. Ten minutes later we saved him from what became torture in his eyes.
His cough worsened, his temperature rose, his nose became a faucet. The hours ticked by. It is now 11:30 p.m.
Since I had just put in a ten and a half hour day, followed by taking the first shift of care, my husband opted to pull out the bed in the couch and stay in the living room with our son, thus the commencement of second shift. The thought was that Kit would be more comfortable being with one of us and hopefully pass right out.
That did not happen.
At 3:21 a.m., I was beckoned to come downstairs for third shift. Apparently, our poor child had been coughing non stop, preventing The Rustic Knight from sleeping. I picked Kit up and placed him his bed, while my husband stayed downstairs to get much needed sleep before he had to get up for work...
Only, that didn't happen, either.
Alarm clock screeches at The Rustic Knight at 6 a.m. He has not slept.
Nor have I.
It has been so long since the Rustic Knight and I have pulled an all-nighter with our son, that we forgot how awful it is to go without sleep: We were in a daze, minds unfocused, groggy, irritable, moving on barely there steam, not able to feel limbs, let alone think. We had the hardest time communicating with each other, adding to the frustration of the past 24+ hours. We were exhausted...and it wasn't over yet.
The Rustic Knight calls off of work, wise enough to realize how unsafe it would be to use machinery on zero sleep, resting for the first part of Monday. I have to be into work at 4 p.m., taking the morning shift with Kit. This involves much cuddling -- remember, I am a blanket. Fortunately, Kit only wants to watch movies. Unfortunately, it is a day full of cartoons.
Have I mentioned the constant clock watching to ensure we don't overdose our child with medicine? The need to keep eye on the time added to the already sluggish movements we possessed. What felt like four hours was less than two. I began wondering how I would make it to work, let alone through my shift. Time slowed, and slowed, almost stopping. At least in perception.
Adding to an already wonderful day (ha!), Kit won't eat because nothing tastes right and it hurts his throat. He won't blow his nose because it hurts and makes him cough. It is a feat to get him to take a few sips of juice or water every 10-15 mins. in an effort to keep him hydrated.
There is a lot of crying, patience dwindling, and frustration surmounting. Kit needs a nap, but is mad he can't suck his thumb -- his nasal passages are congested. I begin to rethink wanting another child. This becomes the longest day ever. Flashbacks of when Kit was a newborn flood my mind. Yes it was worth it! But right now, I am not sure I am ready to go back there. Though ultimately, I want another child, I'm just salty right now.
I hate that there isn't more that I can do to help him. It's hard to know that there is only so much he can understand. These are common emotions I experience on a myriad of levels. I know it will never go away, no matter my precious child's age.
About an hour and a half before I have to leave for work, Kit crashes. Hard. He was still sleeping when I left. I made it through work. We were slow enough I didn't have to kill myself to keep up with my tables, but not so slow I became molasses. Four and a half hours later at home, Kit was up and looking much better. Sleep did him wonders! He ate toast and drank a full cup of milk. This gives me hope for the rest of the evening.
Since The Rustic Knight has to work Tuesday, and stay late to make up the hours he missed Monday throughout the week, he goes to bed leaving me with the responsibility of staying up with Kit. This is OK because I don't go back into work until Saturday evening. I put a movie on for Kit, hoping he would fall asleep to it, though I am not overly optimistic -- I remember last night. But it worked! I carried him upstairs and put him to bed, where he fell right asleep.
This morning, his fever is gone, he can suck his thumb and breathe through his nose, and his coughing has subsided :) He played with his toys, he played learning computer games, and is currently about to take another nap. I only gave him medicine once, and that was upon him first waking in a coughing fit. He has had two pancakes and two cups of milk. I think it's safe to say we have kicked the cold where it hurts...
In closing, the past two days have felt much longer, The Rustic Knight and I worked together to nurse Kit to health, and we are all looking forward to an essential night of pure restful sleep. :)