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October 14, 2001
a year ago
three years ago
four years ago

Dealing With The Virus

5:18 pm: Yesterday and today were pretty much sacrificed to Jet's cold. He has a pretty solid one with a really stuffed nose that, today, is starting to clear but it's moving into his chest and he's hoarse and coughing every once in a while and startling himself and us.

Friday night and last night were pretty rough, with Jet up, sometimes, every half hour, but he gave us both at least two two hour stretches of real sleep both nights, and with the two of us doing tag team work, on the most part, we both did okay on sleep, especially since it is the weekend and we both got to sleep in a little and have naps during the day.

Sleeping in is good. Jet also napped more during the day yesterday and today than he has in a while. He's a much happier camper today.

Some of the night time stuff was just cleaning out his poor nose, feeding him when necessary and finding it harder than it has been for a while to get him back to sleep. Maybe I should have been warned Thursday night when it took a whole hour to get him back to sleep the second time he was up that night. He hadn't done that for a while. And the last two nights have both had stretches where he was just too unhappy and too uncomfortable to get back to sleep, either because of the cold, because of his nose, because it was too cold or too hot, and finally, last night, we just put him in his old car seat, in a nest of blankets, and let him sleep in our room.. My knees were getting trashed by all the stairs I was having to do.

So last night was better in that sense. John's snoring was a bit worse because I was afraid he'd wake Jet up because I was mildly n edge with all the ups and downs.

Jet's definitely better today. Yesterday he was complaining for a lot of the day. Today he's actually playing by himself, finding toys, and expending energy in trying to get around again today. Yesterday he mostly lay and wailed until I made up his nest and tucked him into it. He was still and happy for a while, and later in the afternoon, when I tucked him in it after nursing he just settled in, watching football with John until he just nodded off. John nodded off, too, and they got a good nap in that way.

I was going to catch up and try and fill in the beginning of the month yesterday, but sleep is far more precious at this point. I'll back fill once Jet is sleeping better.

A lot of this is just John and I figuring out what to do with a sick Jet, as this is Jet's first cold. Taking his temperature has been reassuring, as it's just a viral cold, as the temperature has never gotten over 101. All the things we're doing to deal with this stuffed nose and his breathing has been cribbed from the same sheet that John and I have written for dealing with those things ourselves. Nasal saline to loosen things up, a session in the small bathroom upstairs with a hot shower running for a while to provide enough steam to ease the dryness in his lungs, and plenty of liquids. Most of his intake has been breastmilk, which is kind of contrary to the no-dairy with a head cold, but he takes a lot of comfort from it. But I've also pulled out the straws and let him sip at dilute mint and hibiscus tea. He also has been getting more water through a straw than he would normally drink through his sippy cup.

We did do a few things.

Bob's sister, Sally, was in town this weekend, came in Thursday, flew out Sunday, so Bob, Sally, and Mai met us at Casa de la Mina in Erie and we all had Mexican food together. Jet had had his naps and was doing okay at that point, and was really good and pretty quiet and content with being held in people's laps for most of the initial part of the meal, while we were sipping drinks and talking about stuff and waiting on the food. He was supremely happy to just sit in Sally's lap and play with a few things.

One of the things he found fascinating was the clear plastic cover over the table cloth of the table in the restaurant. He first played with the edge of it, then picked it up and experimented with feeling that part of the table above and under the plastic. He did that several times as if he were testing that it really did feel different with the stuff there and with it not there. Then he started sucking on the plastic to taste what it was that way, too. He really got into that, and nearly pulled some of the dishes off the table by pulling what they were resting on. My.

Jet did great afterwards, too, playing with Sally and getting fed by Mai. Then Mai was cool and helped John give Jet a bath while Bob, Sally and I talked about the books we have on our bookshelf. Sally really liked what she could find and was amused by the 'ton of books story' with the movers. One of the moving guys had said to me, "You know. you have a ton of books." and John and I thought about it for a while, with an estimate of shelf feet of books and an estimate of what each foot weighed, sure enough, we have about a ton of books.

It took us a good hour and a half to get him to sleep, though, and he spent a lot of it crying. From tiredness, from his nose, from a reoccurrence of his fever, and from various other things, including a bad case of gas because with his stuffy nose when he was nursing off of me he was struggling so hard to breath that he'd end up swallowing a lot of air with his milk. The combination is pretty nasty.

As he cried at various times through the night, he got hoarser and hoarser and hoarser until today his voice is pretty trashed. It's more because his nose cold has moved into his throat than because of all the crying, because he's coughing, too. When he growls at things, now, it's all gravel.

Today he's been a lot better and he's been doing, of all things, a lot of standing. When set up against something he can hold onto he's standing as content as can be. He just leans against things and uses them as part of the standing, and lets someone else take care of the balance. If he loses his balance, he'd be in a lot of pain if we weren't around to catch him, a lot like when he was first learning how to sit up, so I don't doubt that he'll be standing on his own fairly soon.

A lot of our furniture is a bit suspect as standing baby supports, so we're going to have to comb through everything and get those pieces cleaned out of the areas he often plays in.

Today we went out and had lunch out, and Jet charmed the waitress and two women at the table next to ours and then got an old couple across the way to goofy grin back at him. He had fun playing with a charging Beanie rhino, sound affects compliments of Rosty, and really enjoyed sucking on the spoon of his place setting. He also ate beef from both our sandwiches, a French Dip and a cheese steak sandwich, with the gusto of a true carnivore.

He did great, and then did just fine at Safeway as well, while we stocked up. Then he fell asleep on the way home. I took the opportunity to nap while he was asleep. That was good.

We took a walk after he woke up, and after I'd put the chicken in the oven for a plain roast chicken. We went out in the 70 degree sunshine, and I really liked that. Okay, there are good days out here. And it was nice to walk in it.

Dinner was just a roast chicken, instant potatoes, and some frozen broccoli nuked until it was done. Jet snarfed down his own combination of broccoli and cauliflower that just reeked the way broccoli can. Jet loved it, though, and ate as much as John would give him. He then demolished some kiwi, mango and apple and a handful of Cheerios. He's now feeding himself Cheerios on a regular basis, all the practice has paid off.

Now he's fussy and tired, but it's just tired, not the completely trashed look he had yesterday. So I'll hope a little for tonight.

The one other thing that's run through my weekend has been the opening chapters of Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson and he begins as beautifully as he has ever begun. I've always really enjoyed his beginnings and the middles of his books. John just read it, and he really liked the whole thing, including the end, so I'll get to see if I agree, eventually. Still, Stephenson has always been a master at introducing the highly individual characters of his cast, and this time is no different.

Oh, one other thing is that in the last couple of days, Jet's started going mm-aa-mmmuu-mmmuumma while looking at me, and ddddahhdahdahduuuh-dah when looking or playing with John. It's not exclusive to those situations, and not nearly as clear cut as 'he's calling us that', but he's clearly playing more with those consonants. It could get interesting soon, as I'm starting to introduce the signs of 'More' and 'Enough' while feeding him and trying to think of more that are fun for him.

Eating wise I have stumbled upon something I really like. Celestial Seasonings has a Bengal Spice herbal tea which is a bunch of chai spices without any tea. I've found that I really like steeping it in half a mug of water, then adding enough soy milk to top it off and popping the whole thing, with the tea bag still in it, in the microwave until it's all good and hot and letting it steep just a bit longer. The result is a caffeine free chai, creamy with soy and sweet with spices. Really nice way to end the day.

I guess I'll do that now.

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Copyright 2001 Liralen Li. All Rights Reserved.