Is there anything worse than having a sick kid? I always cringe when I hear the words, “Mommy, I don’t feel good”. I know what is right around the corner; the coughing, the whining, and the snotty little faces. With the first signs of sickness, I cross my fingers and hope that there will be no episodes of throwing up, or excessive pooping. The nights are bad enough without these two sleep stoppers.
Unfortunately, just a little cold can put an end to the minimal amount of sleep that I get now. A little sniffle can ignite multiple midnight calls where my daughter tells me that her nose is stuffy, while my son calls me up just to inform me that he is sneezing. Additional trips upstairs are dreaded because I already get up a minimum of two to three times a night, on a good day. My daughter still struggles with nightmares and she wakes up screaming/crying around midnight. Then I usually get called up around 2:30am, for my son to pee, because he is too young to go by himself. My daughter then wakes again around 4:30am, because she also has to pee and she is just too scared to go by herself. I try to go back to sleep , but I have to wake up every morning at 5:40am in order to shower, get dressed, fix breakfast, and get everything organized before we leave at 7:15.
So, my daughter has had a bad cold. I already survived five sleepless nights of being called upstairs to hear about her boogery nose, inability to breathe, and her pure misery. Now my son and I are getting sick and he is calling me up constantly. My son is also miserable, and now that I have the cold, I understand why! It is impossible to sleep with the coughing, sneezing, sore throat, headache and runny nose. My husband has been traveling and I was alone with the kids. I had already spent the weekend caring for my sick children, while feeling horrible. My daughter was starting to feel better. I could tell because her sense of humor was returning and she spent most of the weekend trying to get a reaction out of me. She would walk up to me and look at my shirt and say, “Oh, what a lovely handkerchief! It was so nice of you to get it for me!” Then, my child would wipe her snotty face somewhere on my shirt/sleeve and wait for my reaction. She then would laugh so hard, that she would basically fall to the ground. I tried to stop reacting to it, but it is hard not to react when your child wipes snot on you! I also knew that she was getting a little stir crazy and this was the her best form of entertainment right now.
I survived the weekend, but Monday I was sick. I knew Sunday night that my daughter was well enough for school but, Monday morning, my son was still sick and needed to stay home. I was exhausted from the cold (and the lack of sleep) and I just wanted to be by myself. It was taking everything I had just to take care of them. All I wanted to do was curl up in bed, turn on the TV, and try to stop the faucet of snot running down my face.
Monday, he was all over me and, he was also very irritable and very demanding. He was a cranky mess from the time he woke up. I walked into his room and opened his curtains (as I do every morning) and he started yelling at me. He was saying “Do not open my curtains! I don’t want you to do that! Close my curtains now!” I tried to respond and he stuck his tongue out at me then starting mumbling under his breath. I’m pretty sure that it was the toddler version of being cussed out! I imagine it was toddler speak for something that would translate into “Hey Mom! Up yours and the broom you flew in on!” I mean, the boy was seriously mad about something; probably just the fact that he was sick and felt horrible. He is taking it out on me, just because he can!
My head felt like it would explode at any minute, but I was forced to play with trains and then with trucks. I eventually turned on the TV and let him watch a show on Disney Jr. This show happens to have a cat who, is also a pirate and, uses the word scurvy a lot. So, the rest of the day my toddler referred to me as “You scurvy little momma!” I was so sick that I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry! I wished my husband was here so that he could experience this level of fun. I wondered if my son would refer to him as “You scurvy big daddy!”, since he always says how big and strong his daddy is. I was pretty sure that hearing my husband referred to as a “scurvy big daddy” would make me feel better. Too bad he is not here!
So, now it is noon. I am almost 7 hours into my day and I feel terrible, but it is time to go pick up my daughter from school. My son is still being a cranky little pirate and I can’t wait until I can buckle him into his car seat for a moment of peace, but not quiet. I am forced to listen to the Kids station on our satellite radio. My head, face, ears and teeth hurt and these songs are not helping the pain. This scurvy little momma only has to make it 8 more hours until bedtime. This is when I can finally sit down, take off my snot covered clothes, and try not to cough so hard that I almost pee my pants. Children are wonderful and can be fun, but being a mom can be a thankless job; like spending the last three sleepless weeks either wiping noses, or picking up sticky, wet tissues that my kids have managed to drop all over the house. When I was in junior high school one of my good friends used to say, “It’s been REAL, and it’s been FUN, but it’s NOT been REAL FUN!” That has summed up a lot of my days lately, and the days of some friends who have been sick as well. Don’t worry girls, your REAL FUN days are just around the corner! I feel your pain! Hang in there, you scurvy little momma’s!