I don’t get sick that often. I think my body just knows that, as a mom, I have far too many things to get done and it is just not allowed to be sick. Us moms just tough it out. The kids still need to eat and get to school, errands still need ran, baths given and teeth brushed-we just aren’t allowed a sick day. The night before last, I went to bed feeling off. I knew I didn’t feel right. I had a lot to get done the next day and a few hours of sleep should set me straight.
It did not.
I was up and down, hot and cold, sweating and shivering all night long. When my husband got up at 530 for work, I was still curled up on the bathroom floor. About 630 when my alarm went off (not that I was asleep anyway), I hear our son say those 4 words that make all parents cringe….’Mommy, my tummy hurts’. As I crawl out of bed to bring him a bucket and check his temperature, our daughter jumps out of bed perky and ready to start her day. It’s too much energy for one child to have, but it’s spirit week for her at school and she is dying to have crazy hair today, so I get her some breakfast (dry cereal-I forgot to get milk yesterday and of course had it on todays agenda) and we put her clothes on. She is rapidly telling me how she wants her hair done and my brain is trying it’s best to keep up while focusing on not vomiting. We finally get her ready and my husband walks in the door, he came back to take Emma to school for me and he sent me back to bed.
By now it’s after 8. I have texted the bus driver to not come get our oldest and I have called the school to let them know he is out of commission today, and we both decided to curl up on opposite ends of the couch and watch some Netflix and recuperate. He throws up a couple times but seems to be feeling much better by lunch. I, however, can’t seem to get enough sleep, but every time my eyes close I get that feeling in the pit of my stomach like I’ve been in a wave pool at the water park all day. My husband comes home for lunch and after one look at me, tells me he will pick up our daughter from school. I guess I look as bad as I feel at this point.
A few hours later, in bounces our eager 5 year old. She hasn’t lost a bit of her energy today at school, and now that our son is feeling better they both start to wrestle on the couch. Right next to where I’m trying not to die. I try to get up and manage the chaos, but I feel more like I’m herding wet cats than actually accomplishing anything. My head is pounding from dehydration and my whole body is achy. I think to myself ‘this is it…this is how I die…dehydrated and yelling for kids to clean the water off the bathroom floor’. My saint of a husband walks in the door with a gallon of milk, he’s home early from work because he knew I was probably needing some help (boy was he right). He shooed me off to bed and said he could handle dinner from there.
Now, my husband is a Marine. He can handle pretty much anything that is thrown his way. The problem is, he handles it like a Marine would. So when it was time for dinner, he did what any Marine would do-he gave the kids MRE’s. It would not be my first choice of healthy dinners, but the kids thought it was amazing and I was in no position to demand anything else. I popped my head up a few times to check in on them, but every time I was sent back to bed. My husband then tucked the kids in early and our whole family was asleep by 630 pm.
I woke this morning with my husbands alarm at who knows what time, finally feeling like a human being again for the first time in over 24 hours. As I went through the house getting our day started, I was greeted by crumbs on the floor, a sink full of dishes, something red staining the kitchen counter, and blankets and shoes everywhere. I sighed at the sight of all the things I get to clean up today to make up for my day off yesterday, but I also was so grateful. See, as a military family, we don’t usually have Dad around to help on sick days. We get so used to taking it all on by our selves that we don’t realize just how lucky we are when they are around. Sure, he gave the kids MRE’s, but they were fed. He put them to bed early and didn’t follow our usual routine, but he snuggled with each of them and gave them his undivided attention. He left a mess of a house for me to clean today, but he took so much time to check on me and pick up where I wasn’t able to yesterday. Moms don’t usually take sick days, but it’s nice to know I’m lucky enough to be able to every now and then.