Wednesday, December 17, 2008
You Can Be A Muperherm!
Figured it out?
I’ll give you a hint. Mia was translating a sentence from images of sign language fingerspelling on her restaurant placemat. The M, O and S symbols were a little too similar for her to distinguish.
“What’s this say?” Mia asked, after she had finished crayoning the letters.
“You can be a … muperherm,” I sounded out. I loved the sound of it. “Muperherm.”
Muperherm is about as close to Superhero as I got Sunday. I dragged myself out of bed after two days of sleeping, dozing and what rudimentary childcare I could dish out when Dad and the babysitter weren’t around.
Sunday morning I woke up and I didn’t have to try not to swallow. I no longer had to concentrate on moving and breathing slow so as not to cough and make the ripping pains in my diaphragm. I no longer needed to breath through a washcloth soaked in hot water just to give my membranes some relief.
The bedroom smelled like menthol, eucalyptus and unwashed bedclothes. Which bedroom? The latest – the fourth? -- in our series of moves. I’m not complaining – I can’t complain cause every place has been safe, clean, comfortable and yes, beautiful. But if you read much of me, you know organization is not my strong suit. Non-sequitur, anyone? By this fourth place, our stuff is tossed and tangled and I’ll be lucky if I can find my deodorant in the morning.
On Friday morning before I took to my bed, I had schlepped our suitcases, paper bags, the cooler and garbage bags full of dirty clothes from the condo to the car, driven two blocks to the hotel, then checked in and collapsed. The girls were with Randy at work. All day. Sometimes it takes him a while, but this time he got it. He really got it.
And all it took was my kicking over the recycling bag that morning and rasping to him in a hoarse whisper, “I’m sick. I’m sick. I’M SICK.” I can’t imagine trying to entertain two little girls in an office setting for eight hours, but he said they played and colored and watched a movie and Nora even took a nap on the couch for an hour. Wow. Superdad.
The band of my friend’s husband was playing Friday night, but I couldn’t muster up regret for missing it. I knew that would come later.
The next day we had the babysitter already booked for Randy’s office party but I can’t even think about showering. No Optimus Christmas party for the first time since 1991, when I shared the Rookie of the Year Award with Karen Meyer. No fancy desserts, no stupid dancing to “Single Ladies,” no end of the year video, no Polaroid portraits in front of the wintry backdrop with the painterly lighting.
But Monday I got the girls fed, into a bathtub (I even washed their hair! And scraped out Mia’s ears!), dressed and on our way to the fifth home of the month. I’m a muperherm.