It’s Not All Mary Poppins

Soldiering on…

Hello, there!

You’re welcome to come on in, but keep your voices down, okay? My head’s a bit fragile. And it’s pounding. Throb, throb, throb. No, no. Didn’t go on a weeknight bender.

My eyes itch, too. And my eye teeth? They feel kinda … swollen. I know, I know. Teeth don’t swell, but that’s how they feel, what with the five kilos of SNOT backed up behind them.

The centre of my upper lip is charmingly pink. That’s from all the snot that is pouring OUT of nose. Which makes my eye teeth feel marginally better for a moment or two, but doesn’t help my nose or lip.

Every so often a cough rattles my upper chest and throat. Excruciating, it is. I now understand why Anna was clutching her chest and saying “Hurting!” whenever she had a coughing bout. Hurting, indeed.

Yes, I’ve caught the plague. (Version 1. Version 2 turned out to be food poisoning, brought on by some iffy shrimp. Desperately nasty, but not – thank goodness! – contagious.)

Will I work today?

Well, yeah.

I’ve been a mother, see. (Still am, come to that.) A SAHM. When I got sick, the kids were just … there. There was nowhere else for them to be, there was no one else to care for them. You’re at home, you have no place to go. You care for them because you have no choice love them dearly. I was sick. They were not. Which is a right royal PITA, I might add, having all these pictures of health bounding around your sick-couch. Because you don’t go to BED when there are children about, do you? No, you languish on the couch where you can see them tearing the house apart.

“Are you going to stop that, or do you want me to come over there and COUGH/sneeze/puke on you??”

Ah, but I’m playing to stereotypes here, and it’s not fair to my children. Generally, when mummy was sick, they lavished her with care and attention. Whispered conferences amongst them about who was going to get to carry the tray of toast and juice; snuggles and stories; offers of favourite toys; puppet shows and pictures. It was really rather sweet, though it did tend to interrupt my naps.

So, NOT tend to children just because I’m sick? Bizarre. I’ve had a whole lifetime of practice!

My husband always shakes his head. “You have sick days in the contract. Why don’t you TAKE one?”

“What? Waste a sick day being sick?” Can’t bring myself to do it. Where did this bug come from? The kids. I don’t need to worry about infecting them — they’re all immune now, aren’t they? I’m not so sick as to be couch-bound. If I really couldn’t function, I’d take the day off (and still see it as a mild cop-out, though earned and deserved).

Today, however, I’m not really sick. I just have this ten-pound, itchy-eyed, swollen-toothed, constantly-streaming head. But I can move around, I can sit on the floor and sing croak sing, I have today’s craft set out already.

Why wouldn’t I work? I did exactly the same over twenty years of parenting. And these days? These days I get PAID for my pain…

January 18, 2008 Posted by | daycare, eeewww, health and safety | 10 Comments