Alternate Title: Baby Poo and Vomit Don’t Have To Get You DOWN, Yo!
This was a weekend for the record books.
A mini epic drama of pestilence, plague, and broken water pipes. Days were I oscillated between wanting to laugh hysterically (hyena style) or cry and cry and cry (mommy style).
It all started Thursday when the Little Lady woke early and greeted us with flushed pepto-bismal-pink cheeks and glassy, blood-shot eyes.
And complaints that her throat, eyes, head, back, neck and even her littlest pinky toes hurt.
Never a good start to a day.
A few tense moments of forcing her to stand still while I held the thermometer under her arm (Mama don’t do thermometers in the “derriere”, thankyouverymuch), the bright red digital screen confirmed our suspicions: a plague was upon our household.
One by one, our children fell victim to it — a 48 hour LONG virus that brought on high fevers (that would NOT go down despite all the ice packs, tylenol, motrin, and pedialyte I could throw at the kidlets), exploding diapers, vomit, snot, eye boogers (or whatever that eye junk is called), and lots and lots of crying, whimpering, and zombie like stares.
My kidlets were the saddest little people in the world, y’all.
(and so was Mommy after much of the bodily excretions ended up on the new, cream-colored rug that had only been in our house 21 hours before being “christened.” Sniff)
And, on TOP of all that … at 4:30 am, Sunday morning … I was rudely awakened by water. Dropping on my face. MY. FACE.
Yeah — the hot water pipe in our attic had THREE leaks.
And our bedroom ceiling had THREE leaks.
Well — one drip, one leak, and one deluge of water pouring out onto my face, bed, and carpet.
Fun, fun times.
By the time we reached Sunday night, the Husband and I had turned into robots, answering the whining call of sick children, automatically changing diapers, dispensing medicine and Emergen-C “fizzy drinks” with precision.
Not stopping to eat, drink, or take a few moments to breathe. We had a mission and it didn’t include looking out for our own well-being.
Later, after the last sick kiddo had drifted into a fitful, restless sleep (um, that would be Baby Barney, who only slept in 35 minute spurts all. night. long.), the Husband and I just stared at each other. Shell-shocked by the drain of being nurse-maids. Our brains, which had been hyper-focused on our kidlets, had nothing left.
This morning, after one of the worst nights in this Mommy’s record book of “Horrible Nights I’ve Had,” I knew that something had to give. The Husband was going to work while the kidlets and I played alone (and, yes, we still have one with a fever this morning. Woot!).
There is no way I can make it through today alone, exhausted and reeking of spit-up (among other things).
So, in true Type-A, List-Maker style, I created a game plan for How To Keep Mommy Sane today.
How To Recharge During Family Illness
- Quiet Time: Meditate and Pray (so simple but easily overlooked during the chaos of dealing with shivering kidlets; but, I know for THIS Mommy, a few moments in quiet, reading scripture, focusing on “lessons,” and preparing my mind and spirit for the day … it’s HUGE for me)
- Take a shower. (there is no reason to continue smelling like pestilence)
- Eat a healthy breakfast. (a single piece of toast won’t do much to fuel your body; protein, fruit, and whole grains will. Do it.)
- Prepare a few “grab-n-go” snacks. (again, combine protein and fiber: hummus and carrots or almonds and dried fruit. Your body will thank you)
- Get out of your Jammies. (now, as of right now, I haven’t implemented this goal for the day. But I’m going to… I NEED to get out of these clothes AND I know my perspective will be better if I’m not wearing flannel pants and a stained, over-sized man’s shirt.)
- Take a shower and brush your teeth. (this isn’t always the easiest to squeeze in when you have little ones — especially sick little ones — but it will help you feel better, help you smell better, and help you fight off the kidlet germs)
- Through out the day, take a couple of moments (here and there) to be by yourself. (first, tell yourself it’s “OK” to do this — if your children are safe and not in the throws of a fever — it is OK to head into a bathroom, the kitchen, the bedroom and be BY YOURSELF. 3-5 minutes without the noise of any other human being will be miraculous for maintaining sanity.)
- When your husband comes home, Kiss Him! (don’t forget to appreciate your spouse … and vice versa for him. You are each other’s support system, especially in stressful times like this. Don’t forget to take time out for each other.)
That’s the game plan for today — well, in addition to menu-planning and ensuring my little members of society start feeling better and get back to their crazy, funny, “you’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me” selves.
If all else fails, though — feel free to send chocolate and reinforcements.