September 14, 2009 by Marj Hatzell
All units code four One-oh-nine Avenue Fifty-Three…copy that, we’re on our way…wooowooowooowooo
I glanced at the clock and staggered out into the hallway, just in time to see Bugaboo perched on his bed with his favorite Tonka ambulance, pushing the buttons over and over and stimming on the lights. The silence was deafening at that time of night with the crickets providing white noise. I stumbled down the stairs to get him a fresh cup of juice and tripped over two dogs in the hallway (we’re sitting a Bernese!). Bugaboo didn’t follow. That shoulda been my first clue.
I went back to find him in bed again. DH sauntered out of Bug Boy’s room (Bug Boy was in our bed with me, due to being sick himself) and I sent him back to bed. As I cuddled with Bugaboo, I put my hand on his chest to feel him take a few breaths. No wheezing, yet. He allowed me to keep my hands there as he guzzled down every last drop. He was so congested that I got him nasal spray (that went over REALLY WELL ) and then I climbed back into bed with him. He didn’t jump out. He didn’t run away. He snuggled into me (his back to my face, but still) and sighed. And coughed. And sneezed. And stuck his feet between my knees. He didn’t move a muscle.
Believe it or not, I don’t mind when my boys are sick. They don’t make a sound. They don’t complain or whine. And perhaps the best part? They DO NOT MOVE FOR HOURS. Days, even. The pretty much just sit there looking sad and pathetic, eyes glazing over while watching the zombie machine. Most people HATE it when their kids are sick. Me? I take advantage of the opportunity to spend quality time snuggled under blankets, reading them stories and planting tons of kisses on their foreheads. It’s the only time they allow me to do that. See, Autistic kids don’t like to be manhandled the way most kids do. They often don’t throw their arms around their mommies and hug and kiss and such. My kids like to be thrown onto the couch, sat upon (yes, they want us to sit on them) and LERVE receiving deep-tissue massage and back beatings. Strange but true. But I take what I can get. Any little touch is fine with me.
Call me a bad mother, if you will. But I enjoy it when they are sick. I feel connected to them, even if they won’t let me wipe their brows and rub their skinny little backs.
We drifted back off to sleep, Bugaboo and I, and I listened to his breathing become deeper and deeper. The crickets were getting fewer and the birds were chirping more and more. Car doors were slamming, engines were starting and dogs were beginning to bark. After I planted one more kiss on his sweaty cheek I tip-toed back into my room and climbed in with Bug Boy. He rolled towards me, put his hand on my face and murmured something about space ships and legos before he fell silent. And I smiled.
I may not get much sleep but I do get plenty of love. And even nights like these I feel like the luckiest mom in the world.