Kristy provides support for pregnant and laboring mothers and for transitioning families after the birth of their baby.See all posts »
Do I Get to Be Sick as a Mom?
I woke up Monday morning with a head cold. I don't know if it was the chilly night of camping with minimal sleep that did me in, or if I got it from the kids being sick a couple of days prior. This is the first cold the baby has gotten . He is now nine months old and is midway into teething, so I thought the runny nose was from those teeth trying to push through. Within a day's time, though, the mucous had gotten thicker -- and then my 3 year old showed the same signs of sickness. I knew I was in for a ride.
Having sick children to care for is already a bummer and a challenge. The poor babies can't really convey what's wrong. Of course, when they are sick they are in need of more one on one attention. With my head throbbing and feeling completely exhausted I need to find a way to attend to them as well as my daily workload and somehow keep myself from slipping deeper into sickness. Is it all possible?
Well, the initial response for me is "Yes, I can do it all." Then reality sets in as I try to stand up and feel like a boulder is weighing me down and like I haven't slept in a week. And then I remember: since I am on child number three, I don't have to do it all. I can give my kids the extra attention they desire while they are sick and find ways to help myself get better, too. Yes of course this does mean all of my work will not get done and some appointments will have to be rescheduled. But I need to remind myself of what I have learned being a mother over the last 7 1/2 years: I am worth it and I don't have to be super mom. In fact, the definition of super mom has evolved from being the mom that does everything perfectly, to being the mom that does things well while taking good care of herself, too.
So the challenge is on. Slowing down, nourishing myself and the kids with lots of good tea, miso soup, water, probiotics, greens, yummy fruits and veggies and quality protein. I make sure we don't skip days on our vitamins, and add in some good herbal tinctures for support. There will be lots of time spent cuddled up reading books, playing games, singing songs, and making crafts. Not to mention time each day out in the sun for some fresh air and to get our bodies moving, even if slowly. But one of the most important things to fit in is a nap. Timing the baby's afternoon nap to fit in with my three-year-old's nap may afford me some time to rest as well. And going to bed early is a must.
Still, I can't help but feel a little stressed with a messy house and a huge list of things to get done. I may have to just ask for some help during this time, too. I know, typically a super mom does not ask for help. However, I am a firm believer in "It takes a village" approach -- and there's no shame in that.