The worst thing about being a stay-at-home mom is the lack of sick days. Both Thing One and Thing Two caught the same nasty virus about a week apart. Barfing followed by fever followed by cold symptoms and finishing up with an ear infection for Thing One, while Thing Two finally finished her constantly dripping nose. Thing One had one night of high fever where I stayed by her bed, talking to her, rubbing her chest and placing cool cloths on her forehead. For Thing Two’s feverish night, I slept with her on the floor in her room, both of us sharing a sleeping bag while she nursed and whimpered the whole night.
I made it through that nursing duty tired but unscathed. Then, last week, Bill got sick. Luckily, it was just a cold. Obviously, he doesn’t require the same care as the kids, but still I fuss over him a bit and try to make life easier.
Finally, we were all well and I thought I had escaped this month of misery. Until yesterday. I must have eaten something bad. I think it was my salad at dinner. Bread would never do such a thing to me. I woke up feeling awful; body aches, head ache and stomach ache. Bill left for work and Thing One left for school but that pesky Thing Two was still under foot.
She is 15 months old and at that roaming toddler stage. The first thing she does when she gets up in the morning is check the perimeter safety. Is the stair gate latched? Is the office door shut? Is the cellar door shut? Is the bathroom door shut? If any one of these is left open, she gleefully runs in and starts doing whatever it is she shouldn’t be doing. For example, in the bathroom her mission is to unspool the toilet paper and splash her hands in the toilet. Ugh. Thing One never did this!
So, when she is on the prowl, I have to be on my toes. And yesterday, I really needed a sick day. I was able to lay down for a bit while she was in the cage (her big playpen) but that never lasts. So I reluctantly called Bill at work and asked if he could come home early, get Thing One off the bus and take her to piano lessons. Lucky for me, he didn’t have any late afternoon meetings and was able to get home at 3. By the time he got home, the stomach issues had stopped, but I was still achy and feverish.
He took Thing One to piano lessons and while Thing Two napped I had two hours to rest. As I lay on the couch, shivering under a pile of blankets, Stella the cat came over and gave me the once over. Then she hopped up on my chest and stretched out her whole length on me, acting like a furry hot water bottle. She closed her eyes and began to purr and I felt like someone was watching over me during my feverish sleep, murmuring that I would feel better soon.