Christmas redacted

We were escorted into family dinner at the Silver Spring House by some loaded guy smoking in the parking lot who took one look at the stroller, did a double take and said,

Do you actually have a baby in there?!

When we signaled yes, he then threw the door open for us. Such chivalry in unexpected places. 🙂

All joking aside though, we’re back in tricky times. Tess’ cousin came into town with a nasty bug, and they’re staying at my parents. We’ve been lucky enough to avoid local major bugs this winter (including whooping cough in my building), and it kind of lulled us into a sense that winter wouldn’t be as bad as we’d feared. Suddenly, grandma and grandpa’s house is kind of off limits. This week of time with siblings I miss has become days I have to skip with them to keep Tess’ exposure to the germs to a minimum. Balancing that with some family time makes my heart ache, because there’s no right answer regarding how to proceed.

So the kids went to the doctor in the middle of dinner. We’ll see how things go, but I think the extended Christmas window might go the way of Easter – aka unexpected quality time with our daughter. Now Easter sucked – seeing Tess intubated, crashing, getting multiple transfusions and scaring the nurses – so we don’t need a repeat. But I vowed then that I would never feel guilty about canceling something because Tess needed me. I’m not talking mild ‘stay home tonight mommy’, but full-blown sick, in crisis, in danger. Whatever happens, kids come first. We’re going to Christmas – but we’re missing the cookie decorating, snowmen and catching up. That’s the job we signed up for. In this case, it means we need to be mighty careful for the holidays, so I’m trying really, really hard to see it more as enjoying our first Christmas with Tess than less time with the out-of-towners. As Cheri said, they’re parents and they get it. Still, instead of sugarplums I had Tess and her cousins dancing together in my head, so I’m keeping that dream alive for whenever the stars align!