Remember when you got sick as a kid? You got to stay home from school, cozied up under some blankets either in bed or on the couch. I loved this--I usually had a pile of books nearby to pass the time, and sometimes I even got to watch television. Mom would bring me hot soup or crackers and hot tea, and I got to eat off a TV tray. She would feel my hot head with her cool hand and give me love and sympathy (and sometimes medicine, blech). I could sleep whenever I needed to, and I knew Mom and Dad would take care of me.
Did I ever think about what I should be doing instead of lying around? No.
Did I ever try to do chores while feeling horrible? No.
Did I ever worry about all the work piling up for me that I'd need to do when I returned to life as a healthy person? No.
Did anyone ever expect anything from me other than whining or complaining? No.
You know where I'm going with this...being sick as a grown-up is simply rotten. No one has nearly as much sympathy for your plight as Mom did. And as a sick parent, you not only have to take care of yourself but also figure out how to shepherd the little 'uns around without them getting sick too. And heaven help you if you AND they are sick at the same time.
Yesterday Ted came home early from work with some flu-like symptoms. He went straight to bed and pretty much stayed there until 4:00 this morning, although he did emerge for a light dinner and a nap on the couch. Last night my head started hurting, and it's still aching this morning. I'm hoping it's just from exhaustion (and, let's be honest, a fair amount of stress) and that I'm not coming down with anything. As nice as it sounds to crawl into bed and catch up on some rest, it just doesn't seem feasible with 5 young charges. I encouraged Ted to stay home from work today--he's still struggling with a headache and feeling woozy. There's no need to be sitting in the office feeling horrible, especially with the swine flu scare going around. I hope he can rest and recover amidst the chaos that is our typical school day.
And I hope I don't get whatever he's got. 'Cuz let's face it--it just ain't the same being sick when you're the Mom.