He’s Sick…I’m Tired

One of my kids is sick.  Not just a cold sick but hacking up a lung sick.  I thought he had the flu because he’s been running a fever but it turns out he has bronchitis.  No less debilitating but not contagious thank God.  Plus, now we all have time to get our flu shots and hopefully avoid the flu all together.  When I thought he had the flu, I was afraid we’d missed our window of opportunity.  Guess we dodged that bullet.

All in all my kids have been fairly healthy in their lives.  My daughter fought bad tonsils (which still need to come out hint hint HINT) and so every spring and most falls she got strep.  My niece and nephew got ear infections a lot and when the nephew got them he’d spike a 104 degree temperature in a New York second.  Scary stuff.

My first born had really bad tonsils that gave him tonsillitis a bunch of times but seldom strep.  Then his younger brother (my youngest twin) became a carrier and proceeded to infect the entire family until we finally found a doctor who was able to knock it out without cutting him.  He still has his tonsils and we haven’t had a case of strep in the house for almost ten years.

The middle born (oldest twin) is the one who has bronchitis now.  He got a stomach bug so bad one time he became dehydrated and we ended up in the emergency room.  That was one of those “mommy” times when I told the doctor he didn’t know his ass from third base and did what I thought was best.  He kept telling me to do this and do that and call him back (it was Superbowl Sunday).  Finally I said “Screw that fool!” and off we went to the ER.  By the look on the faces of the nursing staff and the speed at which they took him back, I made the right decision.

Now I have a 17 year old man who I’m treating like a five year old.  I can’t help it and, to be honest, I don’t think he minds.  I was even contemplating crawling into the bed with him last night because his fever was so high, his cough was really bad and I didn’t like the way it sounded.  Fortunately the NyQuil knocked his ass out and he was able to sleep.

Glad someone got some sleep.  I must have gotten up four times to check on his fever and his breathing. 

Some things just do not change.

I’m sure I’m violating some kind of boundary when I hover and nurture like this.  I mean really, if the neighbors knew I was thinking about sleeping with my 17 year old they’d likely call CPS and have me arrested.  It’s just that I can’t NOT take care of my kids and I have no idea what proper nurturing of someone this age really is!

My mother was not exactly a warm and fuzzy kind of woman (although she would have you believe she was) and nurturing was not her strong suit.  Me being sick got in the way of her being able to do what she wanted to do.  Plus, if I was ill then my mother and sister would have to be MORE ill and I’d end up taking care of them!  Because of this I seldom told anyone I wasn’t feeling well.  It was better to just suffer in silence and maybe get some rest.

I may go a little overboard when my kids are sick.  We have always been fortunate enough to have good health insurance so going to the doctor was never a problem.  Since I worked from home most of their lives I could always be there if they had to stay home.  I snuggled, treated, administered and generally nursed them back to health.  I filled eyedroppers with pink liquid and held noses until they swallowed.  I put thermometers in places I never thought I would to get an accurate temperature reading.  I handed out Popsicles for fevers and taught them how to swallow Advil (the miracle drug in my house).  I slept sitting up so that I could hold them close to my chest to monitor a fever.  I sat in steamy bathrooms and ruined perfectly good hair to combat croup.

Fact is, they’re getting older and don’t need this level of care anymore for pretty much anything.  So if I find that one tiny, little time that they actually do need me then by God I’m going to jump on it and do my job.  And if that leaves me a little tired in the morning that’s okay.

I’m used to it.



5 thoughts on “He’s Sick…I’m Tired

  1. Oh yeah it's such a basic instinct isn't it.. don't know why you're questioning it. Nurture away! Love and care to your hearts content. You sound like such an awesome mum and someone for me to look up to, dealing with teenage years (my youngest is only just out of diapers… remember those?!) xxx p.s. I have only ever put thermometers in mouths or under armpits .. not sure where you're talking about??!!!!!!!

  2. Oh what a wonderful mommy you are. I wouldn't question your desire to snuggle your big boy. He is your baby.
    My 13 year old crawls in with me every night. Or with his 4 year old sister. How wonderful to have people to love!

    Btw, I have used that rectal thermometer myself, AND when my son was 1 I actually stuck my hand up his bum to remove some poo that was causing him agony. Now, THAT deserves a parade!

    BTW I love your phrase, “didn't know his ass from third base.”


  3. No rectals here either! (we have a digital swiper that you “draw” across the forehead) although I never trusted it. Fortunately my kids are rarely ill and although it pains me to see them poorly on those rare occasions, I secretly enjoy being able to “baby” them again! And I think they secretly enjoy all the fuss too. Especialy the 17 yr old . . . Milks it for all it's worth 😉
    You're a great Mum Sherry, and a great friend x

  4. Oh man, their wives are going to hate you.

    Being a nurse, I have to take this moment to give a little thermometer education so you don't get the different types of thermometers confused. Do you know how to tell the difference between an oral thermometer and a rectal thermometer?………The TASTE! Bwahahaha

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