We packed the kids into the car anyway because the feeling didn't instruct me to stay home though my self-preservation instinct was screaming run for the hills. Once crammed like sardines into The Professor (our car's name) we got onto I80 and headed east toward Southern Illinois. The land of my people. I often think back on the last time we made this trek. It was a turning point for me and my little family, and really bonded us in an unimaginable way. This gave me hope for another great bonding experience because, after the big postpartum depression battle I've fought for the last year, I've been feeling a little disconnected from my children, husband, and about everyone else for that matter. But the drive overnight was filled with crying-- so much crying-- that only a few hours into this trip I was ready to open the car door fling myself onto the highway at 80 miles an hour. After surviving the grizzly night by spending a little time in my parents van for a much needed nap, I took a turn at the wheel and nearly knocked out Kansas. During this time Annie had a bout of car sickness and puked in her little bowl. . . which she promptly spilled all over her lap. I was prepared for such a moment with a jug of puke-rinsing water. After the puke clean-up it was difficult to get Annie to eat or drink anything. She was afraid of a repeat episode although I assured her she just needed a little more Dramamine. And thanks to the good ol' motion sick meds she did not throw up again.
We arrived in Southern Illinois late in the evening and tried to immediately put our grumpy children and our tired butts to bed. If you remember I haven't slept in at least four days due to sick Sam and now the all night car ride, so my brain and body were both screaming, "Girl, get me some sleep!" However, the hotel room was modestly sized and the only spot we could find for the crib was right next to our bed. I snuggled and nursed my tired baby while Paul read and snuggled the three year old. Soon Sam was ready to be put down, but being able to reach out and touch his daddy and see his mommy's "sleeping" silhouette beside him angered the small lad. He did not want to be put down and he would not have it. He cried off and on all night long, and after a few cat naps and lots of tears I gave up on the whole idea of sleep and just pulled him out of his bed around 5:30. Annie was awake too, so I got them both a little snack.
I sobbed my way through getting ready and yelled at everything in my path. My blow dryer got an earful about how tired I was. My flat iron listened to my rants about going straight home. And Paul, dear sweet Paul, laid in bed dozing like the sleep wizard he is. I stood for a long moment at the foot of his bed, staring at the plethora of pillows heaped beside him. How easy it would have been to hold one over his face while screaming, "SO YOU LIKE SLEEP, DO YA? WELL HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT ETERNAL SLEEP?!?!?!" I knew right then I was losing my mind and nigh unto delirious. So I packed up my hysterically exhausted demon spawn in the car and abandoned the sleeping devil at the hotel. I drove to my grandmothers house and burst through the doors like the wicked witch of the west. I looked at their smiling, rested faces and began crying again while I demanded to stay there so I had a room to escape to while my son fell asleep. I could not calm down foreseeing a weeks worth of nights like the previous. I cried all morning and contemplated going right back home. Paul keep calling my phone and I ignored him for a couple hours until it was almost time for church. When that wonderful man heard how delusional I'd become he insisted I take a nap. Annie, who was equally inconsolable, and I stayed at the hotel together and napped while everyone else went to church. Three and a half blissful hours later we awoke. I was feeling a bit better, but Annie was running a fever.
|Brochure in the lobby of our hotel.... Pretty much summed up the majority of this vacation.|