I've begun to realize that if I try to stick around the house after long nights like that, I become focused on how to get a few moments here and there to rest or relax. When I'm teaching after a night like that, I do just fine because I am out and about and must be ON. So today I decided to just be ON.
We started with a walk and some backyard time. Then it dawned on me that we needed something MORE to just keep going. I have a Six Flags season pass and I needed to use it. So I loaded up the boys (which took like an hour, with maybe a half hour of trying to get Dean INTO the car) and headed out. I even went with a plan. And it was a good one.
I hate our double stroller because it is heavy and hard to push. I find it totally unbearable, so I decided I would take only the single stroller and bring the baby carrier for "just in case" Dean became to tired. I figured we'd see a show first thing because it is a LONG walk from the parking lot to the park. I had extra shorts for potty accidents, diapers for those other accidents, snacks to sneak in, and lunches packed so we could eat at the car before we drove home.
What I didn't plan for was the weather. It was 80 when I left my home. 30 minutes later, it was 62...Six Flags was much colder. So I did what any good mom would do. I found my bathing suit cover in the trunk ( a skirt) and made Jack wear it. If you're reading this Jack, no it was not Halloween and yes you were wearing a skirt...in public. But it was black and long and flowy so it was ok. Then I went into the store and bought Dean a sweat shirt, because by the time we'd made it inside the park his arms were blue.
So part of my plan was foiled, but remedied. Except the part where I'd left the baby carrier at home. It was not in the trunk with the one kid stroller as I thought. It was now VERY important that I find a show to sit at so that Dean's little legs could have a break. He was so excited to be there that he'd been running for our 15 minute hike in. I pulled out our map to find my to the Elephant show (this Six Flags is part zoo) and was pleasantly surprised when an older gentleman with a Six Flags uniform stopped to ask me if he could assist. Why yes thank you Mr. Nice Employee could you please tell me where the Elephants are. He did, they weren't there. He'd sent us to loop the outside of the entire park before we would get to our destination. By the time I'd realized that we had in fact STARTED near the elephants, it was too late. We missed the show.
But all was not lost, there were rides to ride along the way. My poor sweet boy dutifully rode rollercoasters, and fair type rides all by himself while Jack and I watched. Jack can not ride these rides until he can walk. I dubiously held him in front of one employee and showed how he could STAND all by himself without holding onto anything, but it apparently doesn't count as WALKING.
Dean enjoyed the rides, but in a more engineer type of enjoyment. He rode each ride and spent the entire time looking at the gear and levers that made it work rather than at the colorful pictures or even the scenery for each and every ride.
About the time we made it to the Elephants Dean hit total melt down. He was tired. He didn't want to walk, he didn't want me to carry him, and nothing would please the little man. So I hoisted him onto my shoulders where he couldn't get away and began the march back through the park to the car while pushing my other tub of love in his stroller. We made quite the scene as Dean screamed at me to let him down and I repeatedly told him no that he was too tired.
Now I must tell you, in case you didn't know, that those tall strong daddys or maybe even uncles that you see with kids on their shoulders are just that...STRONG. And I mean STRONG. By the time I made it back to the car pushing the stroller carrying my 25lb infant and giving my screaming tantrum throwing toddler a shoulder ride, my thoughts were on the IBprofein that I still can't have because I'm nursing.
I got the boys into the car and started giving them thier lunch (can't have outside food in the park) when Dean declared that his ear hurt and I thought, "Uh oh." Well ok maybe I thought something more like CRAP! AGAIN! REALLY!? NOW!? Because we've done this with you before. Like maybe 12 times in your short two years. Only daddy's always been there to help comfort you in the middle of the night when you wake in pain. AND I'm too young to be responsible for you all by myself. I'm not credentialed for that. They gave me a credential for teaching little children, not to nurse them back to health.
After we'd made it home and visited the doctor who we were able to see right away, we found out that Dean has an ear infection. Surprised? AND strep throat. Ok, THAT was a surprise. Poor Dean. Poor, poor Dean. He was really sick, had a fever, and his dumb Mop made him walk through the entire SIX FLAGS park.
But the best part of his day was the visit with his doctor (whom I am so glad to have as his doctor again). He let him hold the light he uses to look into kiddos ears. Like, let him hold it for almost 10 minutes. Our doctor is not only great at diagnosing children, but also takes the time to know them. He's awesome. I just want to visit him for checkups from now on.