In addition to my capabilities as a professor, scholar, teacher, advisor and mentor, I have now added an additional quality in my reperatory experience: a human pillow.
Xan seemed to be better when I took him to daycare yesterday morning; when Ange went to pick him up, however, he hadn't eaten most of the day and had just cried helplessly. (Our lack of experience with childhood illness hampered us here.) Luckily, today was my day home with him anyway, so the plan was to take his temperature regularly and see how he would do, ready to go to the doctor if necessary. When I took his temperature, however, he didn't have one. I thus gave him PediaCare most of the day with lots of formula.
The one thing he did today, however, was sleep. The poor, exhausted kid just passed out whenever possible, sleeping through most of what turned out to be a beautiful day. And after seeing the most pathetic image -- no, really -- of my lost, miserable child sitting up in his crib crying like a lost lamb, I scooped him up and decided I would hug him most of the day. This suited him fine, as he proceeded to sleep on me for nearly the whole day. I was worried slightly that this was a sign he was worse -- but then I remembered that my mom made sure I slept a lot when I had a cold, so that this would be fine. At one point today, I typed some emails with an outstretched left hand while Xan snored (baby snores are awesome) on my right shoulder, reminding me of the few months ago when I would do this at 3am.
The reward: by the end of the afternoon, he finally woke up for real and looked at me with those familiar bright (not glazed-over) eyes. I took off his socks to give him a bath and he tried to feed me his socks -- which made him laugh. And that laughter -- which I hadn't heard in a few days -- made me give him the biggest hug ever.
And then, as I brushed my teeth just a few minutes ago, I looked in the mirror and saw the aesthetic array of drool, snot and spit arranged on various points on my sweatshirt which, naturally, I wore when I went to the market tonight. Which just goes to prove, if there were any doubt: I really am a dad.