The holidays were lovely as always. Hope survived a nasty one-two punch of seasonal maladies shortly before Christmas. First, she caught a virulent stomach flu that made the rounds of Mo's family faster than the Japanese Bullet Train pulling into Osaka. This holiday will be remembered in the family annals as "Oh Yeah, That Time Everyone Was Barfing."
We feared Hope would have to spend Christmas in the hospital. She lost nearly 2 pounds through dehydration, which is the equivalent of about 20 pounds for a 15-pounder, and generally had the temperament of a damp dish towel. She did spend about three hours in the ER on Christmas Eve Eve, but perked up with the nourishing drops of IV fluid and we were discharged.
But her bout with the Ralph Macchios was only half the problem.
The clues, as they are wont to do, emerged gradually. No. 1: Hope screamed for four hours straight two nights in a row. No. 2: She would only sleep in the darkest, coldest part of the house. No. 3: She liked standing in front of the freezer. No. 4: Her eye began to cake.
Naturally, I read the signs, used my advanced powers of deduction and solved the caper: I think she's hungry. Her wails are those of a famished child confronted with a cruel paradox: She wants to eat, but cannot, because she has the John O'Hurleys.
Fortunately, I'm married to someone who may have married a lummox, but isn't one herself. Mo took Hope to the eye doctor. She had a corneal ulcer. Those are bad. They are formed when an abrasion to the cornea becomes infected. Somehow, Hope must've scratched her eye. Untreated, they can cause permanent loss of sight. If nothing else, we feared Hope might have to take a cue from Jack Sparrow and wear an eyepatch for Christmas.
But doubly fortunate, we caught it in time and, after about a week, the nasty milky spot in her iris has disappeared.
We missed most of the local festivities, quarantining Hope, but she rebounded in time to fly with us to Connecticut for Round Two of the Yuletide Hootenanny: Seven days with my family. Hope regained her weight and her spirits. We ate. We played
too many not nearly enough games of Monopoly. We hit all sorts of touristy, geeky yet thoroughly entertaining historical sites in Hartford (who knew?) and generally had a merry, merry time.
Too merry to document, in fact, but not too merry to steal a video from my dear ol' Mom documenting Hope's continued efforts to walk. She's still got a ways to go, but she finds it all tremendously entertaining. And so do we.