Monday, March 31, 2008

Sick Children and Snot Factories

Children get sick. It has to do with their hygenic eating and living habits, either that or the fact that they share food with everything, from animals to the carpet. Right now, my daughter has a cold. Nasty little viruses, these are not as harmful as they are messy. A day low on food and a couple nights without sleep are all livable by a healthy child. The only problem is that sick children don't understand what is happening to their bodies.

Last time she got sick, it was the flue. It lasted all of the five days it was supposed to, and only had one concerning day of vomiting. Children of two don't understand vomiting at all, they are just distraught. Distraught children want to hug their comfort devices; Mom, Dad, Magic Blanket, and Puppy. Distraught children vomit into their own arms, which are usually clutched around one or more of the previous four items.

The trick is to press your cheek against theirs so you face the same direction. They can still hug your neck, and you get the benefit of controlling where the vomit ends up, most of the time. Even with a strong grip, they still manage to turn toward you at the last possible moment.

Colds, fortunately, involve a less offensive set of problems; coughs, mucus and sleeping issues. Every time she coughs heavily she assures me "I'm okay, I'm okay." She sleeps well for a sick child.

It is the twitch that I find most disgustingly fascinating. It is very rare that a child gives pre-warning of its intent to create a mess. Her little nose will start moving, and then her face will scrunch up. I have yet to get over my fascination enough to stand up and get a Kleenex at that point and time. Then it hits, with a force that rivals adult sneezes, and it expels from a 1/2 inch long nose, one and a half inches of snot worm. With the releaf only a small child can feel she lets out a satisfied smile, while the mucus begins to slide slowly down her face.

Its gross. Its disproprtionally large compared to her size. Its probably more impressively large than the first few good poops that a 8 lb baby produces. Then there is the repetition.

Poop only happens every hour or two. Snot comes every five minutes to twenty minutes. I've probably cleaned five pounds of the sticky liquid off of my daughter in the last 24 hours. thats one fifth of her weight. How does she produce it all?

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