Both my kiddos and I have been hit hard with sickness this year. Usually, we all end up passing the virus through the family. This last time we got hit twice in a row, the first round came through stomach bug style, both ends (thank God I escaped that one!) The second one swooped in just as the first one left. It’s all cough, fever, congestion and runny nose (luckily I missed this one too, save for the slight stuffy nose and excessive exhaustion).
Either way, sickness sucks. Caring for kiddos is tough enough, add in tummy aches, diaper explosions*, the 2 am cookie toss, and lack of sleep and this Mama is in survival mode.
*by the way, pull-ups do not protect your couch from sudden diarrhea at 5 am. Ahhhh potty training.
Clean up the dishes in the sink or tend to the snotting, crying babe? Sweep the kitchen floor or cuddle the feverish toddler? My poor house gets pushed aside to care for the many needs of my little sickos. Sorry dishes, sorry crumbs. I’ll tend to you next week! Don’t worry, you won’t be lonely, I’ve got more cups and crumbs coming your way!
Does anyone else have kiddos that don’t sleep when sick? I don’t get it, that’s all I want to do when I’m sick! Nothing will keep these kids down, unless I hold them (as I write this, there is a little one sleeping in my arms). So my only reprieve is taken as well.
Really though, it was getting out of hand. I couldn’t take it any longer, so I devised a new plan. Minimize and simplify.
Here’s my survival approach to sickness:
Disposable! Paper plates all the way! Bowls, cups, and cutlery too! Paper towels, yes please! Keep them on hand, save them for a sick day. They will save you.
Slushies! When sick, my kids barely eat. Although, my daughter will pretty much do anything for a popsicle. She is shockingly clean with them but my son doesn’t get it. He holds the popsicle by the popsicle, not the stick. He shakes it around and draws on his tray until it melts into a puddle of green that he can splash his hands in. But slushies, now those he can drink! Yes, you need a little blender but I just rinse it as soon as I’m done blending.
Tissues and trash. Side by side! My son will rip a tissue apart into little pieces and sprinkle them through the room if I set it down for a second, so I keep a can at hand.
If I’m sick too, I set up a station of a few other things:
A small clothes basket because I try to travel as little as possible. I keep it on the other side of our living room baby gate because I noticed with all the clothing changes, I can easily accumulate a pile for my kiddos to dissect.
I also keep a diaper pail, a couple changes of clothes for each kid, and clean diapers and wipes.
These are my lifesavers.
Minimize the effort. Minimize the mess. Maximize the recoup. Maximize the sanity.
What are your tricks? How do you survive?