I like to think of myself as a pretty well adjusted person....someone who can manage day to day life and keep a healthy perspective. But I'll admit to my weakness in the Wintertime.....germs. With the constant reinforcement of the flu advertisements on TV it's no surprise I'm a little hypervigilant during this time of year. Now don't worry I'm not a person who needs to rush their child to the bathroom if they touch a doorknob, nor do I even wash Jack's pacifiers anymore, but I must admit I try not to enter stuffy, damp places with hundreds of kids and few windows.
This past weekend I was forced to enter such a zone. Nate was invited to a birthday party. To keep some anonymity, it's a place with a giant animated mouse, and their tagline reads, "Where a kid can be a kid". In my opinion their tagline should read, "Where a kid can be a kid... with a 5 day incubation period." The party might as well have been held in the Dr.'s waiting room. It really goes against all motherly instincts of trying to keep your child healthy. We get seasonal flu shots, swine flu shots, make our children use hand sanitizers after touching grocery carts, and on and on, BUT....we have no problem scheduling birthday parties at giant infirmary. (I know mom...I had a party there when I was a kid, but it had to be cleaner than this.)
I know some of you are thinking I'm being a bit overly dramatic, but really??? Have you been to one of these places lately? It was about 82 degrees inside. The perfect temperature to grow cultures of any kind. I wanted to check the maximum capacity sign near the door, because I'm pretty sure they were over by about 50 people. I don't know what was more frightening the kid's hacking away with green runny noses, or the 50 year old men playing arcade games. (That's an entirely different blog.) All I know is that the hour and half that my son happily inhaled pnuemonia, the flu, bronchitis, hand foot and mouth, and viral gastroenteritis was an hour that I should have spent buying stock in Purell. (Now that's overly dramatic.)
I'll spare you all my opinion on the covered slide, but just so you know it's right up there with the Golden Arches play area. Another place that makes me cringe when I see the greasy handprints on the inside of the plexiglass windows.
I'll try to focus on the positive. I'm thankful that Nate has friend's that invite him to birthday parties. I'm thankful that this hour and a half and 100 token later was the highlight to his weekend. And for now I'm thankful that we have five days until our next Dr. visit. (I'm only kidding...sort of.)