The Kids Are Sick. The Struggle Is Real.

As I have mentioned, I was home for two years with my kids. I did not enjoy it. I was desperate to be out of the house working again.

All that being said, the only good thing about being a stay-at-home mom is when your kids get sick. It’s the one thing I no longer had to worry about. Beau also had it made with me at home because he never had to take a day off with a sick child or ever give it a second thought. Bless his heart. And I had forgotten all about that until the other day.

Sunday night, my son started complaining of a stomach ache. Typical school night banter. I just say, oh I’m sure you’ll be fine by morning. And then he pukes. Mother effer. It’s 11:30 on a Sunday night. So now Beau and I have to decide what our game plan is going to be.

My first thought was, wow, for two years this was not an issue. If someone started puking, oh well. I just called the school to notify them of the absence. And they stayed home and snuggled with me on the couch.

If someone had strep throat. No problemo. I just brought them into the doctor and got a script. We’d stop for popsicles on the way home and watch movies all day.

Now of course it really wasn’t that pleasant. I had enough kids at home. I didn’t need one more. Especially a puker. We never snuggled. And I’m pretty sure I always promised popsicles, but never actually bought any. But at least I didn’t have to worry about a job.

On this particular day I was the chosen one to be imprisoned, I mean, stay at home. And I suffered from the worst case of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder I could ever imagine. It all came flying back at me. The monotony of it all. The feeling of being trapped and not able to get out.

But I got through it because I knew it was temporary. When Beau got home I was able to run out and do some errands. It was snowing hard and I really didn’t even need anything. But I didn’t care. I just had to get the hell out.

The plan for the next day was for Beau to stay home, if need be. Of course everyone was feeling better and I already had my outfit for work picked out for my big return. Then it happened.

With the temps so cold, I’ve been driving the kids to school. Seven of them. So what better time for my daughter to start puking than a half block away from drop off.

She woke up that morning complaining of a stomach ache. I dismissed her because there was no way in hell I was missing work again. And Beau was already at the office. Bless his heart. The panic that set in with the thought of being at home again was enough to make me ignore my baby girl’s cries for help.

Dr. Mom
There, there, babydoll. Mama’s here. Now hand me the God damn remote.

What the hell kind of mother am I? I’ll tell you the kind. The kind that knows that her mental health needs to come before anything and everything else. And everybody else. The kind that lives by the words, if mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.

Just like when you’re on an airplane that is going down. They instruct you to put the oxygen mask on yourself before you put it on your kids. If you can’t breathe, you’re not going to be able to help your kids. Or, more realistically, your hubs. Because he’s probably the one that will really need your assistance. Bless his heart.

Thankfully for me, one of my besties, Teri Patrice, watches my kids when I go off to work. She’s awesome and I texted her right away. Something along the lines of, mind if I drop off a puker? Her response, of course not. Praise be to Jaysus, I’m going to live another day.

Truth be told I didn’t even really feel guilty leaving this particular sick child with a sitter. She’s amazing when it comes to being sick. She makes puking an art form. She’s all business. She never misses the target. She’s 100% woman.

The sitter lets me know by noon that the puking has subsided and she’s having some toast. We’re all good. For the rest of that day at least.

After picking everyone up and getting home, the rest of the night is uneventful. Until, of course, around midnight. About the exact time my head hit that pillow. The hacking starts. No puking. Just a seal-like bark from number three. It’s her signature move.

I have to say, it’s impressive that they are getting sick in birth order.

She coughed the entire night. I mean she never took a break. Thankfully, I was able to keep a pillow over her mouth so as not to wake Beau. Bless his heart. He needs his rest. He has to work in the morning.

Waking up in the morning is more fun than usual. I give her a breathing treatment to get the ball rolling. Then I text the sitter. Again. Desperate for her to take another sickie so I can go to work. As per usual, she says, of course.

But number three is a complete maniac. She doesn’t want to miss school. And if I went to her school, I wouldn’t want to either. She insists on going. She must have the same phobia as I do being trapped in the house all day.

So we seem to be out of the woods, but we all know that’s not the way this story is going to end. It’s only a matter of time before number four starts. But I just need to make it to Friday when Grandma is in charge. The one day a week we don’t have to draw straws for who’s going to play parent for the day.

And it’s only mid-January. We’ve got another few months of this. God help us all.

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