Around 3pm Friday I got a call from Sophie's daycare - fever of 103. "I'll be right there." With a quick g'bye to my office mates, I was out the door with my cell phone tight against my ear, talking to a nurse. Sophie's never fully recovered from being sick in SD, is currently on antibiotics for what is proving to be a very persistent ear infection, and I didn't want to take any chances. When I got to the day care, Sharon, the owner, was cooing over her in a crib, and Sophie looked just pitiful. But by the time we got her to the car, she was smiling and jabbering like she had not a care in the world. Did our child hold the thermometer up to a lightbulb? Roy and I asked ourselves.
We kept the appointment with our wonderfully wise and patient pediatrician and insisted to him that we made it in good faith. Indeed, after 7 days of antibiotics, her right ear was still painfully inflamed. She'll be fine, he said, but we had a decision to make: 10 more days of antibiotics or a shot. He said he thinks this is an infection she got in late November and just hasn't totally gone away, so any time she gets a runny nose, it inflames. So, we went with the shot and Sophie got MAD. I held her and rocked her and she thanked me by crying so hard she puked all over the back of my coat.
Every year, our dear, dear friend Bret has a holiday dinner party. He sends out an incredible menu of appetizers, entree's, sides, and dessert and we have the agonizing decision of choosing between Filet Mignon, Pork loin in a cherry reduction, Chilean sea bass, and on and on. Tonight was this dinner party and we were headed straight there from the doctor, puked on or not.
Roy cleaned me up and I continued to console our angry little girl and we finally got out of there, with the aide of a banana flavored dum dum. To the liquor store, and on the granny's where she spent the evening feeling perfectly fine, albeit a little snotty.
The dinner party was magnificent. Laid back and delicious. Roy and I were the first ones to arrive and were able to spend some good time with Bret before the rest of the heathens - er - guests arrived. Because of the presence of Roy and Bret's brother, Chad, discussion of politics was banned from the dinner table, so they had to get out prior to. While they went at it, I had a great conversation with Roy (and so much my) cousin, Mallory, about babies and arranging a regular playdate between Sophie and her little one, Aiden. Our talk continued at the dinner table and it was great to catch up with her. The food was spectacular, as we all knew it would be, and by the end of the night, Michael Moore had been banned from the table and we were dreadfully close to not being able to talk about music anymore as a HEATED debate broke out about Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan, and the Beatles.
There was much laughter, and much enjoyment, at this dinner table and Bret was a gracious host. He even quietly tolerated the whipped cream fight that always seems to follow his dinners.
Home, my head buzzing slightly from the red wine, we put Sophie to bed and snuggled in to our own.
At 6:30, I awoke to cries. "She'll go back to sleep" I told myself. "It's too early for her to be up". Alas, I tried to bring her to bed with us and she refused. Up we got, a pot of coffee set to brew, and we sat on the couch with raisin bread, milk, and books. I turned on the Fine Arts Channel and we listened to Ravel and Strauss, watched the ballet and Sophie sang along with the opera. I read my book ("Water for Elephants") and she read hers ("Tails") and we each marveled at what was on the pages.
I watch her now, pouring herself tea, laying on a stuffed animal that's almost as big as her, and holding what is a very important conversation with her Mushabelly.
These are my bookends.
What a lucky girl am I.