Being a mostly stay at home mom has up sides like that of an incredibly tall (and lets face it, somewhat phallic) skyscraper, and down sides that rival the depths of Mayan sacrificial pits.
While the ups are amazing, one of the things that I really, really dislike about being a stay at home mom is being sick. Not that I actually enjoyed being sick while I was an office slave, but at least then I could stay home and spend the day binge watching every episode of something on Netflix, and eating ice cream without having to care for anyone beyond my pathetic sickly self.
Well, those days are gone.
Being at home with kids means that they are no longer in daycare; I am the daycare, sick or otherwise. If I’m sick, tough shit, I have to deal with it. Breakfast must still be made, regardless of how the thought of toast makes you want to die, kids must be shuttled to their various activities (try not to puke en route), and you must still provide enough coherent adult supervision to ensure your kids don’t play with the mousetraps.
It also leads to conversations like this: Honey, could you please entertain yourself and your brother for a few minutes while mommy goes to the bathroom? Why? Mommy feels sick. My tummy hurts. No, please don’t watch. Fine. Stay. Yes, thank you, I know it’s gross.
And then there is the guilt mixed with hate that I feel for my husband when I’m sick. For example, I spent a large portion of last night debating whether or not to beg my husband to stay home from work so I could be sick like an adult...which basically means acting like a big baby all day. At 4 in the morning, the rational side of me had pretty much fucked off for the night, and I lay there feeling guilty for even thinking about asking him to take time off work so I could stay in bed, yet despising the fact that he got actual sick days while I had to tough it out. At 4am that pretty much translates to hate, with very little direction or focus. He could call in to work if he felt like he was dying, why couldn’t I?
Despite the guilt of having to ask, I did finally wake him up to tell him not to leave me at home with kids by myself. Well, asked isn’t really the word. It was closer to begging and threatening mixed together: Thregging?
I don’t break down and do that very often, but he is also very aware that I don’t handle being sick very well…especially being sick to my stomach. Having two kids for me meant 18 combined months of pregnant vomiting hell. I tend to panic a bit every time I feel sick, like it’s the harbinger of unending stomach upset. In any case, luckily he was able to stay home, allowing me to wallow in my own misery and pity. Not a pretty picture, but an honest one.
And with that, I’m pretty much tapped out. Time for some rest and hopefully some relief. I have nothing but respect for any parent who can cope with illness and kids at the same time....you are better people than me.