Yesterday our 2 year old Caedmon landed in the hospital with the flu and febrile seizures. I can say with absolute certainty that driving my seizing son to the hospital was one of the scariest and most intense moments of my life.
I felt so helpless and strong all at the same time, which makes no sense except for the fact that it does…
He’s doing a lot better now, no more seizures and the high fevers are thankfully just a memory. In case you’re counting, thats three hospital visits in the last month, two in the ER and one surgery.
To say I have a new appreciation for my son would be a profound understatement. If I get the flu it’s because I compulsively kiss those cheeks, all. the. time.
So now we have the flu and we’re passing it around, one by one. Kel went down today and I’m not feeling 100% but as the mama, I must stay strong. If you’ve never been the mom of a sick house, I’ll fill you in on the job description,
It’s basically: Water, Wash, Sanitize… repeat.
Water: Make sure everyone has fluids, are they drinking enough? Okay.. Good. While we’re at it, are you drinking enough water? Go drink water or tea… do it now. I’m on full blown mom mode and I’m not letting you go down too if I can help it.
Wash: Every shirt and sheet is, you can only assume, covered in green snot and germs. So you must have the washer going at all times, it’s working almost as hard you are… almost.
Sanitize: Lysol and Anti-Bac are your BFFs right now, spray every knob and button… die germs… die.
Repeat: Are you done? Good.. now let’s do it again! Add Febreeze as desired to mix things up a bit.
So that’s my life right now, that and doling out Gluten Free snacks to Noelle who is NOT sick and as energetic as ever, bless her heart.
It’s easy to get discouraged when this is the rhythm of your life. Lord knows that it doesn’t feel very productive, more like cyclical and all consuming. Yet I’ve come to learn after a few years of frustration that productivity must take a big shift when you become a mother.
Your pre-mom and post-mom to-do lists look totally different, and your sick-mom to-do list? Fuhrgettaboutit.
I’ve found it’s best to make peace with the cycle because sickness will come and those fevery babies serve as a grounding reminder of who I really am.
I’m mama, I’m the person of choice for fevery snuggles.
I’m the only one who speaks fluent Caedmon-ese.
I’m the Penny family barista, short order cook, laundress and the president of the Hide and Seek committee.
And for now, the writing and organizing are all far less important than the fevery cry of my son crying: “mommy, I need you! Up!”
So take heart all you mamas out there, doing another day of sanitizing and wondering when they’ll ever get to the important stuff on the list.
Because you’re there, we’re there, this nursing and washing and the soft rubbing of warm backs is THE LIST, the essential, foundational task that we’re been called to.
We’re so much more important than we realize, the tissues, the snacks, the rubbing and soothing absolutely count on your “things I got done today” list. It’s just we always seem to forget about them when we’re measuring ourselves.
So you there, take heart today, you count! Your life’s work is beyond important and all these cycles of snuggling and germ warfare matter tremendously.
You’re mom! For the rest of their life you’re who they’ll be wanting when they’re sick.
And as for you? I bet you’ll secretly want to be the back rubber and cracker delivery person, for all time.