My kids have been sick, well, pretty much since school started. Seriously, it started two days after school started. The first week, they only had one day of school since school started on a Thursday and they don't have preschool on Fridays. Then on that Saturday, Kaden got the flu. Since then we have had the stomach flu twice (maybe three times, I can't remember for sure) and too many colds to count. Parker and Cooper had sinus infections a couple of weeks ago and now for the last two weeks they have all been fighting this virus that causes a high fever and a sore throat. It's horrible. They feel terrible and it has lasted for 4 days for Parker, Kaden and Brett. Cooper hasn't gotten it yet, and I am praying that he doesn't. Since school has started, there is always at least one kid with a cough or a runny nose.
Now, I am a pretty positive person. It takes quite a bit to knock me down. Especially when it comes to my kids. I am a "go with the flow" kind of person and I generally take everything that comes at us with a smile on my face. Even when Cooper was a baby, still on oxygen and hospitalized twice. Yes, I was worried but I stayed positive and just saw it as another bump in our extremely bumpy road that we were traveling down. Or when the babies were in the NICU. I was scared every day after they were born and in the NICU. It was an incredibly scary time. I cried more in that 4 1/2 months of our NICU stay then I ever have before in my life. But still, through all those tears, I tried to stay positive. I was happy that I had babies, so I tried to stay positive no matter what happened.
But, wow, this last couple of months has been hard. I am tired. More tired than I've been in a long time. I'm sure I was this tired when my kids were babies, but I think that is one of the things I have blocked from my memory.
When the kids were babies, we did everything we could to keep them healthy. No one was allowed in our house if they were sick, or if someone in their household was sick. No one could come over if they hadn't gotten a flu shot. We limited the number of kids that we allowed to visit. A lot of our family didn't meet the babies until they were a little older because we didn't allow visitors outside our immediate family in the NICU. I made everyone wash their hands, use hand sanitizer, wear clean clothes and take off their shoes before they came in my house. We avoided public places during cold and flu season like the plague.
My kids couldn't get sick when they were babies. A common cold literally could have killed them. Seriously. Even with all of our precautions, Cooper still ended up in the hospital twice. The day after he was released from the hospital the second time we called 911 because he choked so bad while eating that he quit breathing and turned some ugly shades of purple and blue.
We tried hard to keep them healthy. And for the most part, we did. I thanked God everyday that I was able to do that for them.
I took a lot of grief from a few people for being so high-strung about germs and not letting them get sick. I heard more times than I could count, "You have to let them get sick. They will never build up an immunity if they don't get sick now." Yes, this was in fact true, but it was different for my kids. I knew that if I was successful in keeping them healthy as babies that they would be sick a lot once I started taking them out in public more but I was OK with that.
The first year that we were more relaxed about germs wasn't too bad. They got sick, but nothing too major. Now this year has been different. I knew once they started school they would be sick a lot.
But I honestly didn't think it would be like this. This bad. This CONSTANT sickness.
I guess I have been feeling a little defeated. Tired. Exhausted. Broke down.
Here's the thing though. The reason I am going to change my thinking RIGHT NOW and be happy that I have sick kids. What????? Did I really say that I am going to be happy about having sick kids? Yes, yes I did.
Having sick kids means that I have kids. Four of them. Something that for a few years I thought I would never have.
When I did finally get pregnant it was with four babies. It wasn't going to be this dream pregnancy with one sweet little baby. Even though I was finally pregnant, I still didn't know if I would make it home with any babies. I had faith that it was going to be OK, because that's how I generally think about things, but in the back of mind I really didn't know what the outcome would be.
Then when they were born at 23 weeks I really didn't know if I would bring any babies home.
But I did. I brought four healthy babies home.
I am so incredibly, beyond belief, blessed.
For some reason, God gave me these kids. He let me witness the most amazing miracle I have ever seen.
How can I not be happy that I have sick kids? Having sick kids means that I am a MOM.
Ahhhhh.......Mom! The most wonderful name I have ever been called. A name that fills me with more love and joy than ever imaginable. Even when it's in the middle of the night and followed by a cough, sniffle or a sad "I don't feel good" cry. Amazing. Simply Amazing. Most awesome job EVER, even when they are sick.
Tomorrow will be a better day. I really believe that. Even if someone else is sick. It will be better
because I am going to make it be better. When I look at these four sweet little faces, how could I ever not be happy?
Now excuse me, I get to go snuggle a tired little boy that needs his momma. I am so blessed!