Cabin Fever and the troll who lives under the floor.

This was the girls’ first cold winter.  (Have I mentioned yet that we’ve moved to New Jersey?)  They’d never seen snow before, and loved it!  Every day there was snow on the ground they begged to go dig in the snow.

“Dig Snow! Dig Snow, Mama!!”  “Go OUT, dig SNOW, mama!”

But if it was below 36degrees, I’d keep them in. 

I kept them in alot.  We all were driven nearly crazy with it.

And then we got new downstairs neighbors….and wackiness ensued.

They had a dog, some kind of pitbull, that they swore was a perfect saint and would never bite anyone!  Yeah, right!  The thing was frantic and twitchy as hell, with rolling eyes and sharp, scrabbling claws.  It’s owners could barely restrain it when it caught scent of our little ones.

They also smoked, sometimes right outside our door, we could smell it quite strongly.

And to top it all off, they had just moved from a house to an apartment, and were of the mind that neighbors should be totally silent, so as to enable them to enjoy the same standard of living that they enjoyed in their private house.

They, of course, were to be free to slam doors, argue loudly at all hours of the night, and pound loudly on our door and scream at us for our twins making normal active toddler noise during regular hours.

“Make them run around the block a few times, that’ll quiet them down!” I was loftily told by the man downstairs.

“I don’t care!” I was sniped at, when I tried to tell him it was too cold out, or any other reason why I didn’t stuff a pillow over their little faces for his convenience.

And then the twins got sick again. 

In these here parts, it was dubbed by other mamas as: “The cold that never ended!”  No fever, appetite fine, poo and pee fine, active child, happy child, but lots and lots and lots of multi-colored mucus-laden projectile sneezing.

For the first week, I used homeopathy and herbal stuff, and they seemed to be getting better, but then a day after being “fine”, they’d relapse.  So I took them to the pediatrician who gave them a prescription of antibiotics.

I don’t like the antibiotics, but my rule of thumb is, if their fever is 103 or over, or if their illness doesn’t respond within a reasonable amount of time to natural stuff, then we resort to conventional treatments.

It took another week and a half before they (and me and my husband by that time) to be all better, and we could finally go out.

But it was a hellish two and a half weeks of enduring the neighbors’ harassment about the girls’ noise.

Luckily I’m friends with a mama and toddler a few doors down, who live on a bottom floor.  They had the same problems with their upstairs neighbor!!  It seemed that with the structure so thin or something, it didn’t matter if your kids were upstairs or downstairs, the neighbors got it full blast!

I informed the management of this, so after that, they tended to discount the neighbors’ exaggerated claims that the twins ‘kept them up all night’ and they ‘couldn’t get any sleep for a whole week because of the noise’. 

Factor in that the girls were asleep by 9pm at the latest!

For my own part, I tried to teach the girls about the ‘man with the poor owie head under the floor’, and how we shouldn’t bang on the guy’s head.  To their credit, the girls did actually manage to tone down the rampaging a bit, and are mostly able to restrain themselves from ringing the neighbors’ doorbell when we go in or out.

And I don’t know what the office said to them, but now the neighbors have grudgingly admitted that with the girls being two and a half, and the structure being as hear-thru as it is, not much can be expected of the situation until the girls are a bit older.

Still, I wish they didn’t slam their door so loudly at all hours of the night when they go in or out.

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