My wretched children

Laurel’s had a bad cold since last Sunday. Each day I think she must be getting a little bit better, but NO! She can hardly sleep every night and has had a variety of aches. Charlie mostly just has a cold, but I took them both to a $180/patient, walk-in clinic Friday where Laurel was diagnosed with an ear infection and given a Rx for antibiotics. The doctor told us that Laurel wouldn’t notice any improvement in how she feels for a few days, and he was right! She’s just as miserable as she’s been all week. I think I have to take her off dairy again. She had frequent sinus infections when she was little and then none when I switched her to soy milk and almond milk and then near-constant sickness in the last several months when she’s been drinking cow’s milk again. Sigh.
Because Laurel’s not feeling well, I’ve been doing all the housework. I do most of it anyway, but this week it rained nearly every day. I had to carry a huge bag of laundry to the laundromat in the rain only to find they don’t open until 9:30 (and they close at 5:00 – 3:00 during Easter weekend). Luckily I could sit on my bag of laundry under the roof for 20 minutes while I waited for the owner’s son to come open the place. Then it was back home to change shoes (The sandals were much too slippery in the rain. What was I thinking?) and hurry back to the laundromat to put the clothes in the dryer before continuing on to the sporting goods store to buy sweatpants and shorts and then to Whole Foods and then 1.2 miles home carrying three bags of groceries plus the sweatpants and shorts and an umbrella and then back to the laundromat to fold the clothes and carefully stuff/place them in the laundry bag and carry them home. Meanwhile the dishes pile up in the kitchen, but Laurel gets so weak when she’s sick, that she couldn’t safely stand at the kitchen sink to wash them without fear of passing out. (But she did wash some yesterday.) She came close to passing out a few days ago while sitting on a stool at the kitchen table before breakfast. I had to hold her shoulder with one hand while stuffing gluten-free toast with almond butter in her mouth with the other. After considerable effort, she was able to chew and swallow the one bite and then felt fine. It seems like I need to have her on a slow-drip, sugar-water IV during the night because her blood sugar gets too low between dinner and breakfast.
I bought Charlie some children’s crossword puzzle books, including some Canadian-themed ones and have encouraged him to find the answers he doesn’t know by looking up the clues on the Internet. He tries but still can’t find some of the answers and constantly asks me to help him and won’t take “no” for an answer. I can’t get away from him because this apartment is so tiny; and when I sent him to the bedroom for a couple minutes the other day, he kept looking out the glass door.
The owners of this house, a married couple and their school-aged son, say on their airbnb profile page that the wife is a stay-at-home mom and enjoys her hobbies of dressage and interior design. When I tried to get a hold of her last week for an issue we had, I couldn’t get her on e-mail or phone, so I knocked on their front door. The cleaning lady I didn’t know they had answered the door. What stay-at-home mom whose only child is in school needs a cleaning lady? I know it’s none of my business, but it annoys me more than a little that I can’t use her washer and dryer; she can’t even be bothered to use it herself! I e-mailed her a few days ago to ask if she or the husband could tweak the fridge as our milk isn’t cold despite turning the fridge to the coldest setting. She said the fridge turns off at night. That pissed me off. I bet their fridge doesn’t turn off at night. Not only does the freezer have no ice maker, it didn’t even have ice cube trays until I asked for them last week. The wife owner brought me one tray with brown flakes of something in it. Then she e-mailed me the other day to give me a “heads up” that we may hear their loud music and talking in a couple weeks when they celebrate the husband’s 50th birthday. (I’m currently listening to “Let it go” from Frozen. 🙂 I don’t understand the appeal of the movie, but I do like the song.)
Today I attended my second meetup for a writers group at a local coffee shop. We sit at a long table and talk for a few minutes and then write for two hours and leave. I sat next to a Jordanian immigrant in his late 50’s, and we talked about our kids. “Homeschool? How is that?” he asked politely. I burst into tears of self-pity, thinking about my week. I told him about Charlie, and he told me about a German company that employs autistic people to do computer programming owing to autistic people’s genius. I told him Charlie’s possibly retarded and can’t even tie his shoes, but we agreed that perhaps his area of intelligence is not being properly harnessed. He then e-mailed me the relevant news story about the German company which I thought was kind of him.
The reason I needed the sweats and shorts the other day is…I got a one-month membership to the local fitness centre/center to run on the treadmill in training for an 8k at Stanley Park on Sunday, May 4 (the morning after the big birthday shindig upstairs). It turns out it’s a lot easier to run at sea level than at 6,000 feet. I guess this isn’t news, but I thought after 17 years of living in Colorado, I would have acclimated – apparently not. The kids and I ran the Bolder Boulder (10k) in 2012 and 2013, and that was really tough for me. The treadmills at the city fitness centre here only allow me to run for 25 minutes before the cooldown kicks in (presumably so one person can’t hog the equipment), so I don’t quite get five miles in during that time :-), but I feel fine running it, unlike I did in Colorado.
Allrighty, better check on the girl before she goes to bed. Her right eye is running incessantly, and we need to look up whether that could be pink eye…

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