What to do when mom needs a sick day.
When you’re a stay-at-home mom, you don’t really have the option of calling in sick. Not when you’re husband works full-time and one or more of your kids isn’t in school yet. No, us moms (the ones who work too) don’t get to lay down and and have someone nurse us back to health, after all, that’s our job. We’re expected to go about our day as normal, despite how we feel.
But, what happens when you get so sick, you have to take a sick day? When whatever you have is contagious and you’re a risk to your children or you are bed ridden? Or both? Do mom’s ever have that option? Right now, I’m sick and I’ve been confined to my room as I’m averaging a temperature of over 102 degrees that has yet to lower with meds. My kids are all just getting over being sick, one of them still sick with pneumonia, so they are highly susceptible to getting sick again from this contagious mama. Besides, the contagiousness, I’ll be honest, I don’t have the energy or strength to do much. I haven’t been this sick since I became a mom, so last night as I came to the realization that it wasn’t healthy for me to be close to my kids, I wondered, what do I do tomorrow when my toddler is home all day and I’m not fit to take care of him? What happens when mom really does have to call in sick? Hopefully, if you’re like me, you have back-up. My mother-in-law is retired, so she’ll be here to help out today til my older kids come home from school. But, what if you don’t have someone to come help you out and it’s just sick you to take care of the kids? As a medical assistant and a mom, here are some things you could do:
1. If you’re contagious, especially if you’re running a fever, wear a medical mask and rubber gloves. You might look really silly, but it’s safer for your little ones, especially if you have a baby who requires constant physical attention.
2. Keep the hand sanitizer and disinfectant spray close by.
3. If possible, have your partner or older kids premade meals. Otherwise, go with canned or frozen foods, something that doesn’t require you to “touch” the food.
4. TV! Sure, we’ve all said we’d never be that mom, but sometimes, the tv is our best friend. If you’re sick, there’s nothing wrong with letting the kids watch tv for a long period of time.
5. If possible, have your partner or older kids set out some age appropriate activities that don’t require much assistance from mom. You can do this as well, just make sure you wash your hands first.
6. Wash, wash, wash your hands!
7. Take care of yourself. Drink plenty of fluids. Eat. Even if you have no appetite, nourishing your body will help keep you strong. Staying nourished and hydrated will help you get better faster.
8. If you’re mom to a baby, sleep when baby sleeps. I know you’ve all heard that before, but it’s even more important when you’re sick.
9. If you’re a mom of a baby who breastfeeds, don’t stop! If you bottle feed, just be sure and wash your hands before preparing a bottle.
10. Don’t worry about the extra stuff, the cleaning, the laundry, it can wait till you feel better, save your energy for the kids.
11. Explain to your kids that you’re sick and let them know that you’re going to be ok. Tell them what they can do to help you.
12. Don’t feel bad. We all get sick. It’s not your fault. Don’t beat yourself up over it, just accept that you’re sick and take care of yourself so you can get better.