February 12, 2016
When you live in the mountains, you get used to unexpected weather coming up over the ridge and settling in the valley bottom. Then you turn your back for a moment, and look out again, and there are clear patches up above which grow into a great blue sky…showing just how fickle the weather can be around here. Our little local airport is known as Cancelgar for you never know til your plane has come or gone if you are getting out that day at all. Chances are, you won’t be.
Things change rapidly and where we are in the valley can be very different from ten minutes south and around a few bends. But winter especially is known for being quite dreary and dark. The ceiling is low, my husband says. My mom used to say that the clouds socked us in for the day. And that is the best description, I think…for this heavy cloud covering has socked in the visibility, with no change for a few days, and we are snuggled at home, watching the snow recede with the damp air and infrequent sprinklings of rain.
Good thing we are housebound, too. A nasty stomach bug found us and took us out, one by one. Ten days (and counting) where each of us felt intense tummy pain and nausea and all the wonders our bodies do to rid of unwanted viruses. Even I succumbed to a day of horizontal bed rest, feeling so completely awful and quite down. It is incredible how one’s spirit and attitude are tied so intrinsically to good health. That was the second time in ten years of mothering that I actually took a sick day as my husband just happened to be home the day I was slammed with Hurricane Stomach Flu 2016. I think his presence allowed me to let the queasy illness overwhelm me so I stayed put, not even being able to read or do much more than nap and feel awful. But it passed, as they always do, and now I am back to mothering the last of my babes who was up all last night.
These mellower days have found us mostly indoors, of course, stitching and painting and playing board games. Valentine’s Day is Sunday and papa will be home for dinner and so there is a flurry of creations being attended to while books on tape are played for whoever is sick on the couch. When my kids are ill, unlike me, they choose to be on the couch surrounded by their favourite things. Always a pile of good books at the ready, some water or tea not far from reach, and mama quilts and pillows to create “a good nesting spot”, as Sunshine told me this morning. From the couch, it is easier to look after the sick child and they feel part of the family still. If they need to sleep, others go to play upstairs in bedrooms, or outside. Sometimes, my oldest son will go be alone in his room to rest, but he really prefers to be close to the action. This also allows me to putter and tidy or cook or if I’m lucky, do a yarn dye bath or spin some wool, while keeping a good eye on my child.
I’m really in awe of those mamas with larger families who face flu season…it must go on forever! The longest stretch our family of five ever faced was 23 days and I thought that was a long haul!
Please stay healthy, friends…surely this weather won’t stay socked in for much longer!