Wednesday, March 13, 2013


I was supposed to be a fantastic weekend, filled with surprises. Only part of that statement actually came true... the weekend was full of surprises, it just wasn't so fantastic.

Miss Ellie turned three on Monday. We celebrated the big occasion in a small way on Saturday. Ellie was the least interested person at the gathering. She greeted each set of grandparents with tears and a proclamation that her eye hurt. She refused to eat the beautiful cake that she wanted... The cake that when asked what she wanted, Ellie replied, "I want white frosting with red letters." I'll agree, the frosting is the most important part. Why bother worrying about what's beneath it... (It was red velvet for those inquiring minds.) But she ate exactly none of it. Not even a humored bite.

Let me pause here to say... this should have been a big flashing warning sign. A sign so big and so loud, begging us to cancel all plans and hunker down for the three-year-old wrath that was to come. A warning of epic proportions... Yet, I cancelled nothing. We did the opposite of hunkering.

What is the opposite of hunkering, you ask? It's a surprise trip to a water park. It's an overnight stay and two special guests in the form of Nana and Bapa. We've been planning it for months. Down to the casual, "Hey Ellie, why don't you open this gift..." The new swimming suit gift... followed by a spontaneous "Hey! Why don't we go swimming today?!"

We hopped into the car. We drove a couple of hours and made it to the water park... this behemoth of a place with something for anyone and then some. The boys ran with delight into the water just as fast as their legs would take them. Ellie cowered and whimpered and asked to be held.

We coaxed and cajoled and finally got her to slip down a slide and float on a lazy river. Both of which she did less because she wanted to and more because Monte and I must have looked/sounded so pathetic.

I'll spare you the details, but let me say that it wasn't long before things got dicey. Ellie's fever kicked in and her tummy was so grumbly and growly that she didn't want to eat or drink anything. She fell into a fitful sleep that night and the next day was worse.

Fast forward to the trip home and a visit to the Emergency Room with a little girl screaming in pain; two parents holding on with frayed nerves and hoping that there was nothing seriously wrong. Several hours later, we were sent home with a little girl who was no longer screaming, but instead drunk from the medication used to sedate her for the testing. Little birthday girls get royal treatment at the ER. I wish I didn't have to know that.

Now, two days later, Ellie was back into her routine; kicking and screaming the whole way. (Literally.) She's getting better. She'll be fine. I'm not sure I can say the same for Monte and me; sleep deprived and still frayed we've decided that if we ever go back to the water park we won't leave anything to chance. That in and of itself is a huge statement... you see, two days ago we vowed never to return to a water park. Ever.

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