I’m not going to deny that Wednesday was one of the harder days I’ve experienced. I felt so ill, and I had two little people who felt just as bad, that needed me. Wednesday was a hard, hard day. But we got through it.
By the time my husband came home sick Wednesday afternoon, I was feeling better. Earlier in the day I had been able to sneak in an hour nap and I was keeping down my saltines. The pain killers had my body aches under control and I was able to power through until both kids went to bed.
It sucked waking up at 5am Thursday morning to drag my sorry ass to work to get sub plans ready. It took longer than I expected and by the time I got home my son was already awake. I have to admit, a part of me appreciated that his dad got a taste of what the day before had been like for me. He never has to care for the kids when he is sick.
Thursday I felt much better and I was able to care for my sick family. There were lots of snuggles, lots of listening to music on the bed, lots of sitting with my kids while they played quietly. Lots of watching my son’s face light up when I held up something he loves. Lots of lying with my daughter’s hot body pressed against mine, watching movies while I smoothed back her hair.
Of course there were other, less savory moments. The diapers have been disgusting and I’m sick of cleaning up puke. But those quiet moments were really nice, and in the end I was almost thankful to have that time with my family, that still, quiet time where we had no plans, no agenda, no reason to worry about anybody but ourselves.
I’ve been feeling kind of down about parenting lately. It’s not my kids, or my husband or anything specific, I’m just sick of the relentlessness of it all, of constantly tending to other people’s needs, of setting boundaries and holding them over and over and over again. Sometimes it feels like I’m supposed to be a rock that my kids throw themselves against again and again. And while I love the ocean, I know what happens to the rocks that face the crashing waves. If they get worn down, how can I expect I won’t?
I’ve been trying to pull myself out of the funk, embracing the gratitude I feel for my two children, but it’s been hard when they make every moment a battle.
These two days of just being with them, taking care of them and feeling like I was doing a good job at it, that felt good. I was reminded of what wonderful people my children are, and how much I love them. Of how much I love my family.
Of course now I have to go back to work and deal with the repercussions of my two day absence. My house is a disaster area and my kids and husband still aren’t feeling great. But I’m still somehow thankful for that two day interlude, for the reminder of what is most important and why.