Round and round we go.

We are still trying to sort through exactly what happened yesterday and last night and the best answer I can come up with is that teething combined with 100 degree temps had a nasty effect on poor Caroline. She is still getting those molars and eye teeth and it has been quite unpleasant for her. In the morning she was noticeably warm, but had no temp so we chalked it up to teething and went on our merry way.

We enjoyed a leisurely afternoon with Sammy Abair and family who were spending some time at Jesse’s mother’s house not too far from us. We finally got to meet the handsome flirt in person and what a charmer!

Since we were so close to my parent’s house we made plans to meet them for dinner locally. Just as we were preparing to go, Caroline was suddenly burning up, red faced, unhappy and hot hot hot. She was not interested in water or juice so after a quick dose of ibuprofen and with some effort I coaxed her to sleep. Those twenty minutes or so in the car resting did her a world of good, so off we went to meet up with Nana and Granda. She was herself again, imitating Nana’s sounds and faces, shoveling ravioli down her gullet, but still not at all interested in her liquids. We stopped on the way to the restaurant and got some pedialyte because I was concerned she was not hydrated and was refusing to drink.

At 10:30 when I opened her door to check on her, she was awake, she wouldn’t tolerate the temperature taking, but the premature reading was over 100. She was burning up and yes, her room was sufficiently cool. More ibuprofen and cuddles, but no sleep. She was up rearing to go and any mention of “night night” “beddy bye” “sleep” sent her into hysterics. We went downstairs and chewed on frozen bread. We watched Noggin – this is why they must now be on 24 hours a day for which I say HOORAH. We snuggled under a blanket with her wearing only her diaper. Mommy and Daddy had droopy tired eyes, but Caroline was rearing to go; laughing, shrieking, bouncing up and down. You’ve never seen such an exhausted, feverish, happy kid!

Shortly after 1:00 AM I finally convinced her through lullaby after mind numbing lullaby that it was indeed a good idea to sleep. We haven’t had a night like this in some time, but they creep up on you, reminding you that just in case you thought you had it all figured out, that you have no idea and absolutely no control.

I lay in bed, wide awake, Steve falling off to sleep beside me feeling so terrible that my baby had suddenly and unexplainably had such a fever and such a bad night. WebMD was calling, but I was too tired to investigate. My Mom Diagnosis is something heat or hydration related. Though she had been in the pool most of the afternoon, she had still been sitting outside in the heat not drinking anything.

Nights like these remind of the endless walking and bouncing and taking turns for 10 minutes we did during the period of time we refer to around these parts as “The Newborn Coma.” Suddenly I was not just feeling badly, but also feeling fearful. If we ever do grow our family, forget about getting through labor, how would we ever get through the Coma again? How would Caroline cope with the waking and crying of a new sister or brother? Suddenly – thinking about another baby (NOT THAT WE ARE SERIOUSLY THINKING - LET'S JUST GET THAT OUT THERE!) became even scarier than thinking about a first baby. Suddenly – one only child baby didn't seem all that bad.

Until you wake up the next day and that same crying, feverish, refusing to sleep baby is now refreshed and cool to the touch and drinking cup after cup of milk, water, AND pedialyte, playing outside with the hose in the shade looking so deliciously adorable in her pleated pink shirt that your ovary suddenly bursts and you cannot imagine NOT having another baby.

Curse you NATURE.

In other somewhat related news… Steve allowed me the privilege of sleeping in this morning probably as my door prize for successfully tricking her into sleep. As repayment for his courtesy, I mowed the lawn for him. it is an amazing workout, maybe even the best workout I have had in a full year. Lest you think this might be something I would do again, perhaps on Father’s Day, let me warn you, it is also SO NOT WORTH IT! Don’t be duped!!! Sweat was dripping into my eyes (which STINGS!), I sweat through my shirt, and my hands are sore and callused. My body is still recovering hours later. I could use another nap, but I am off to the grocery to fill the family fridge for the week while my pleated skirt wearing first born hopefully sleeps off any remaining pieces of what we will henceforth refer to as "the dehydration."

Rereading that paragraph sort of brings it all into perspective. We were such newbies then during those late night bounce and sing sessions, too many in a night could bring me to the brink of tears making me think more than once, "what did I do to my life?" I laugh at the old Steve and Kerri, who were trying desperately to hold it together perfectly, to not make one single mistake. Last night we not only fed our daughter in the middle of the night, we also turned on the tv for her and those are both regarded as "not such a good idea" by the parenting public. Last June I would have never imagined us doing that, but we did what we needed to do to calm her down, soothe her gums, cool her off, and keep her quiet because we know that once all those things are done she is more likely to reluctantly drift off to sleep. This morning was such a gift. It has been ages since I have woken up on my own - to roll over and look at the clock and not the video monitor. Old Steve and Kerri were always respectful, but I think we have reached new heights. He knows I can't nap during the day, he knows he can. He knew I would make the space in the day for him to snooze (which he is in the middle of now). I knew he didn't want to particularly mow the lawn today. I knew he wouldn't want me to. I knew it needed to be done. This is how we show each other we care. It isn't always chocolates and roses.


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