I had a lot of tasks to catch up on this week before I could find time to write this. It’s a narrative of my unexpected adventure last week. Spoiler: we’re all okay now.
It’s late Monday afternoon and I’m working my noon to 9 p.m. shift at the library. I’m on a project hour, away from view of the public services desks, so I’m able to glance at my cell phone when it buzzes. My 23-year-old, who lives ~240 miles away, has been battling a virus, but felt he was over it enough to go to work. He’s messaging me for advice.
He has chest pains. Bad chest pains. Trouble breathing. Do I think he should leave work and go to the ER?
For the past hour, I’ve been having two simultaneous, but extremely different text conversations with my two kids. I worried I would accidentally send a comment or emoji to the wrong one, as I alternated answering one and then the other.
Kid number 1, who lives a few hours away, has spent the morning at urgent care and is feeling terrible, plus worried about not being able to go to work tomorrow. Kid number 2, who still lives with me, just finished participating in a game jam* with a local game developers’ club. He’s flying high with exhilaration over what his group accomplished this weekend.
It’s one of those situations where I want to be present for both, and I guess the technology makes that possible. But I’m dizzy from the back and forth.
“My whole body aches.”
😦 I hope the medicine helps soon.
“Here are the coolest features of the game we created this weekend.”
🙂 That’s amazing. So cool!
Back and forth, back and forth — celebrate, commiserate, celebrate, commiserate. Never letting on to either that I’m having a conversation with their sibling, or what it’s about. Why remind the sick one of other people having fun? And why deflate the happy one by bringing up worries about the sibling?
And if this doesn’t epitomize being the mother of more than one child, I don’t know what does.
*Participants break into teams and have a weekend to create a computer game on a given theme.