I know I must sound like a broken record, always talking about how brutal this winter has been with sickness in our house, but hopefully this will be the last time you have to hear about it for a very long time (fingers CROSSED!). Coming down with the flu has been the icing on the cake to a winter that’s included three bouts of croup and one bout of RSV for Georgie, a stomach bug for both me and Georgie and endless colds for all three of us. Like, endless. I don’t think there has been one week since the beginning of December where we have gone Sunday to Sunday with everyone staying healthy. Oof. And, everywhere I go I hear people saying it’s been just as horrible for their family too. I guess some winters are just worse than others, and this one has been a total doozy.
When Georgie is sick, it breaks my heart in endless ways, but at least I know that I’m totally capable of taking care of her. I don’t worry too much if I lie awake for awhile at night worrying about her coughing and wondering if we will need to take a trip to the ER (a nice little slice of PTSD from this) and I am up for endless trips to the pharmacy, making her favorite muffins and juice, and anything else she might need from me.
So, ME getting so crazy with sick the flu (like, so sick I couldn’t move my body and if I tried to turn my head I was overcome with dizziness and exhaustion) sort of turned everything upside down. Here are some things that I learned along the way.
It Takes a Village
I first got sick on Sunday morning, and since Monday was a holiday Tom was home both days. That was huge considering it was those first few days that I was the sickest – fever, throwing up, major chills and aches. The works. Knowing Georgie was in amazing hands meant that I could just lie in bed and sleep, without having to worry about a thing. (Although if I’m totally honest, I did feel guilty that Tom was in charge of it all, and wanted so badly to help him, but that’s certainly my own thing!) Then Tom had to get back to work, and then he had to fly down south for the night for a few meetings. Since our families both live far away, we relied on our beloved babysitter Rosa, and one of her lovely friends when she wasn’t available. That was tough for me at times. I think Georgie felt a little out of sorts – mom in bed all day, not keeping to her normal routine of classes and playdates, etc. So she would have fussy moments and it was so hard to hear her upset when I was stuck in bed, literally unable to move. I tried to tell myself that she was in great hands, this is temporary, and she’s resilient and will be absolutely fine, but I definitely struggled a little bit with this part.
Take Care of Yourself
Sounds obvious I know, but easy to forget when you are trying to take care of a toddler, while super sick yourself. On Tuesday I woke up feeling so much better (which I now realize was just ‘better’ compared to how I was the previous two days, which felt mainly like ‘verge of death.’) So I made the mistake of saying ‘I’ve got this.’ I looked after Georgie all day as best I could (this included a lot of lying on the couch reading books together, and watching Bubble Guppies), and completely forgot to take proper care of myself. I hardly ate, drank maybe one glass of water all day, and didn’t get nearly enough sleep. That meant feeling almost back at square one when I woke up on Wednesday. I was on the couch counting down the minutes until our babysitter would arrive so I could get back into bed. It was bad. I slept for hours, and when I woke up I started chugging down water and gatorade, and eating tons of chicken soup, all of which helped hugely.
I didn’t wash my face or brush my teeth for days, and I alternated between these and these, peeling off and changing t-shirts every so often (thanks, fever). I surrounded myself with pillows in bed, cracked the window to get fresh air in, drank lemon lime Gatorade through a straw, watched Friends when the dizziness allowed, and slept when it didn’t.
(Try to) Let Things Go
There were so many things that got cancelled or pushed back or re-arranged this week. All of Georgie’s classes, her two year pediatrician check-up, my dentist appt, a meeting I was supposed to have – the list sort of goes on and on. I harped on this for awhile, but eventually just completely let it go. None of that matters, I told myself. I just needed to spend any energy I had trying to get better.
Here’s to a healthy weekend 🙂