How did my conference go, you politely inquire?
Oh, it was fine, except I ended up in the hospital. The first two days went well–we (did I say my spouse was traveling with me? He was.) were able to check into our hotel when we arrived in the morning, which meant we could nap rather than staggering around the streets wishing we were napping. And then we got a decent night’s sleep, and I gave my talk the following morning, and it was well received, and after a day of conferencing we had dinner and fell asleep at a reasonable hour…and I woke up shortly thereafter and thus began the worst case of food poisoning I’ve yet to experience. OH, THE AGONY! In fact, I thought I might be having contractions, because recall that despite my many, many children I’ve never felt a contraction. The violent emptying of my bowels soon made gastritis seem much more plausible, but we got to contemplate the possibility of delivering a catastrophically premature baby in a foreign land… Anyway, long story short, I ended up in A&E with dehydration and not-enough-calories, so got to enjoy the splendor of the National Heath Services and be called dear a lot (American nurses call you honey) and see a maternity ward and be offered a courgette pasta bake which I declined in favor of crackers. All’s well that ends well, but it did put a kink in my sightseeing plans. Good thing I hate sightseeing and actually like to lie in bed watching foreign TV, which I was able to do just fine. True, it meant I didn’t fulfill my professional obligations to the extent I might have, but I find that I don’t care.
The babies got through our absence very well. But despite having missed them terribly, it didn’t take long before they were both screaming and I was utterly out of patience. Long time readers with photographic memories will recall my Code red, code green post. There’s a LOT of code red these days as the babies work out how to play together. I know that it’s typical, and developmentally necessary, and blah blah blah, but Bun Bun is giving me a very hard time. She screams and flails at the slightest provocation (usually sibling-related injuries to her person or her SOUL), and has had some epic tantrums lately, which I thought were OVER by age four. She has also discovered obnoxiousness, which I’d hoped she’d skip. I think starting preschool at the end of August will go a long way towards curing what ails her, but in the meantime, I’m finding it hard to cope. I feel like there’s a strategy that will keep them happy and it’s a Personal Failing that I haven’t found it yet, but if that were really the case, someone would have found this strategy already and told us parents about it and sibling conflict and emotion regulation would be SOLVED.
So that’s me! It’s very good to be home. Summer has finally arrived and there are lots of green beans to eat…and I am totally able to eat again.