Sunday, December 02, 2007

Patient Zero and the Office Party

Patient Zero is how Jason has been lovingly referring to our daughter this weekend. While she is doing much better, the rest of us are experiencing various stages of illness and despair. Okay, so despair is kind of a strong word. Marcie's cold is sitting in her trachea, which her pediatrician has informed me means she will have a loose cough for probably 4-6 weeks. But she's in good spirits and back to sleeping through the night, so that's good news.

Wish I could say the same for me. The sleeping through the night part, anyway. This virus is most miserable first thing in the morning. I feel exhausted. And everything hurts. It's just sitting in my sinuses and my vocal cords, hanging out. And hanging on. But at least I can breathe.

It's still attacking Jason's throat. So last night Jason forewent my office shindig (which was quite swank compared to what this public school teacher's usual holiday office festivities entail). I missed him terribly, and I am the worst at making small talk, so I was feeling a little anxious about going alone. But after spending two hours curling my hair into spirals, I'd be darned if I weren't going to go! So off I went.

As is the case with most office parties, upon arriving I immediately attached myself to my closest friend at work, who was there with her husband. But I knew I couldn't (and shouldn't) glom on to them forever. So I headed for the bar. Not to drink because, well, I'm a serious light-weight and with Jason conspicuously absent I was driving myself home. But my strategy was to spend my time at the bar.

I met two people in line the first time through, accepted my drink, and got back in line. Where I met two more people. And by the time I got back to the front of the line, my diet Pepsi was empty-- just in time for another drink. I repeated this three times before they asked us to sit down for dinner. It works great with Diet Pepsi, but it's not something I'd want to do if I were actually imbibing alcohol. And yet I have no idea how to circulate around a room. I'm certainly open to thoughts and suggestions here. I don't really have trouble finding a circle of people in which to insert myself. My issues come when I'm bored. Or we've run out of things to say. How do I extract myself? I see a future filled with cocktail parties of one sort or another. So please. If you have advice share. My career may depend on it.

I had a good time despite flying solo. There were dance instructors (what a fantastic idea!), so no excuses for not dancing! I did the Electric Slide, which really brought me back to my sorority days. And then I headed home.

The kids were tucked into bed. The house was quiet. And I fell into a restless sleep. And actually, my kids don't really tuck themselves into anything. Talk about restless. They flip and flop and scoot and toss and turn. They flip so they are sleeping sideways. They turn so their heads are where their feet should be. They kick off their sheets and blankets, then cocoon themselves into them. It is amazing to observe. They are seriously messy sleepers. I think they take after their father-- though I don't suppose sleep habits are the sort of thing that result from nurture unless you opt for a family bed (and we don't).

Anyway, I have been carrying magical words with me since early yesterday evening. The kind of words that make a girl smile inside and add a spring to her step. As I was kissing the kids good-bye before I left for the party, Casey smiled up at me, eyes wide, and said, "Mommy, you look pretty!" I was on cloud nine. He's never called me pretty before. What a treat.


Danielle said...

I've always thought you were pretty. Enviously so actually.
Do post a picture of the spirals. I'm impressed! I would've gotten into one of them, burned my head, fried my hair, and still walked out the door looking like a brillo pad. What can I say, some of us have the primp gene, others don't.
Miss you.

Anonymous said...

yes, please post a photo of your "do".

nothing beats your children saying how pretty you look.

alison frm dallas