Thursday, August 14, 2014

The number 5

Luke's best friend (Gabe) and his little brother (Judah) spent the night last night.  That makes a total of five children in my house.  There are many aspects of it that I love.  For example, I love that they are having fun...I mean a lot of fun...after all, a houseful of kids is a lot of fun!  I also love that they will be going home soon.  I have no idea how my mom handled six children in one house.  The place is constantly a mess (and I'm not a very tidy person to begin with). 

They ate three pizzas last night, a gallon of Sunny Delight, ten popsicles, a box of fruit snacks, and heaven knows what else.  There are cups strewn throughout the den, a dozen blankets drapped on the floors and the couches, along with the same number of pillows and pillow pets.  The TV/X-Box was able to rest between the hours of 11:00 PM and 7:00 AM.  Currently, the four boys are chowing down on powdered donuts and blueberry muffins, while they play X-box.  Heaven help me if they keep drinking that Sunny D. Did you know that there is caffiene in Sunny D?????  Yeah, I didn't know that either...

As for Evie, she just got home from a four-day sleepover with her best friend, and she barricaded herself in her room (away from the boys) with all her Barbies.  Smart girl.

In other news, Gabe convinced Luke to start Tri-Camp which is a camp at the YMCA that trains kids to compete in a triatholon. Gabe and his two brothers are also participating.  I'm not ashamed to admit that my kids are not terribly athletic.  Rather, we encourage them to be active.  If I had suggested this, Luke would have politely put up his hand and said with a smile, "No. I'm fine."  But a best friend has more persuasion than a mother.  His first training day was Monday night at 5:30.  We showed up with his swimsuit, a towel, a bottle of water, his bike, and his helmet.

They started out with laps in the pool.  All 12 kids were swimming up and down one lane non-stop.  Even though Luke's a fantastic swimmer, there's a big difference between recreational swim in our backyard and training laps.  In the end he was breathing heavy and telling me he was dizzy.  I patted him on the back and told him he'd be fine.  Gabe patted him on the back too and hovered to make sure he was ok.  (Sweet kid.)  Then I proceeded to transition him into a t-shirt, tennis shoes, and his bike helmet and sent him on his way to start the biking portion of the training day, with him complaining the entire time.  Luckily, he was in front of his friends so he tried to put on a tough face. And I was sure he would be fine. Gabe's mom even told me that the first time her boys went to tri camp they all three came home crying and angry and upset about the tough workout.  But, magically, they were totally fine and ready to go back.  I held onto her words like a security blanket as the evenign progressed.

As the kids made their way down to the bike track to complete at least three laps, George and I went over to make sure Luke was okay. In case I haven't made it clear in the past, I'm not the hovering type.  I would have happily left him there with the coach and headed out for a glass of wine or a little grocery shopping.  But I stayed.  It was HOT (as it typically is in August in Texas), so we sat in the car.  But then I noticed Luke wobbling back and forth on his bike.  I watched closely, cringing a little bit hoping he didn't fall.  I hopped out of the car and squinted my eyes to try and see Luke on the far side of the track.  Gabe and his brothers looped by, well ahead of Luke.  And finally, when Gabe and his brothers finished their second lap around the track, a fatigued Luke finished his first lap at the same time. 

We pulled him aside (another dad there to help).  I had already called Chuck to tell him how rough things were going, still with a little chuckle in my voice.  Chuck's response was, "That's what happens when you spend all summer sitting like a potato playing video games."  I totally agree.  Luke sucked down some water and we adjusted his bike seat for a better position.  He was tired, but he hopped back on his bike and kept going, probably completing just three laps (while everyone else was upwards of 6 laps.  Sweet Gabe and his brothers stayed with him for the last few laps and finally the coach called everyone to a stop.  Luke hobbled off his bike toward me, practically hyperventilating.  Gabe helped him get from his bike to me. Seriously, one of the sweetest kids ever.

And I'm the mom who still took a moment to snap this picture.  And I'm glad I did.  It really is one of the sweetest things I've seen kids do.

I rubbed Luke's back and told him he was going to be okay. The coach came over and told him he had done a good job.  And he kept saying, "I don't feel good. I don't feel good."  I looked at him condecendingly and said, "You're fine."  He whimpered some more.  I asked if he thought he was going to throw up and he said, "Maybe."  I laughed and said, "Probably not.  But if you throw up on me (I was wearing a dress for the meeting I was going to afterward), I won't have to go to my meeting."  I laughed a little, but continued to rub his back.  I'm the mom who always makes inappropriate jokes at the wrong time.  I told him to take deep breaths and he leaned his head on my chest until, he suddenly turned and ralphed all over the pavement.  All the kids (and myself) let out a collective, "Ugh-eeeew."  I sat him down and poured water on him to help him feel better.  And yet again, I paused to take a picture. 

I wasn't laughing anymore, but I was in amused shock. I mean, seriously?  My kid threw up after some swimming and bike riding?!  Really?  How bad out of shape is this kid?  And then I heard another splatter behind me and saw a little girl throwing up on the pavement.  I said to myself, "Okay. Maybe it was just a tough workout."  And then I turned to Luke and said, "Look!  Somebody else threw up too! You're not alone!"

Still not sure I handled it all correctly, but he was feeling better within five minutes and when he was finally standing up, he quickly stated, "Mom, I'm feeling better, so can Gabe come over?"

I did a slow blink as I stared at him in shock while Gabe started making his case for coming over.  I said no.  Just no, but maybe later.  Luke was pissed. Gabe was sad.  We all lived.  And on my way out of the parking lot, I offered for Gabe to come over the next day for a play date (certain that Luke would be recovered).  The lobbying for a sleepover that night continued, but I held firm.  We all needed some rest, especially with the news of Robin Williams and the massive tree that cracked in half down our street and fell on our neighbors' houses.  Our street was shut down for three days, and the tree people are here for a fourth day in a row to finish cutting down this massive tree.  It's been an intersting week to say the least.


 And I now have just two hours until these sweet boys head back to their own home!


Mom said...

I love your blog.. Just dont always comment.

Joan said...

Okay....I would respond exactly the same way. Just like when my kids hurt themselves - I never offered to kiss the wound, instead I offered to spit on it - after all the cleanliness of a kiss is the same as a glob of spit in a nurse's eyes. I never actually spit, rather just blew air as is a raspberry.

Good job on just moving on AND holding your ground. Sometimes you just have to say no.