I Suck When My Kids Are Sick

Both of my kids are afflicted with seriously runny noses and pretty gross coughs right now. They’re not even in school and yet, it’s as if their bodies knew that school elsewhere was beginning. Time to start exchanging germs!

This is day 3 of their torment and mine. Much of the time life is ok and they are feeling pretty good, but as soon as the scale tips toward a little too tired, they turn into puddles of snot. My older daughter especially is bouncing back as well as a bowling ball currently. Any small twist, turn or setback is causing an uproarious amount of tears. She needs an entire reset at this point in the day. And let me tell you, I am not handling this well.

If the tone of this post isn’t already clear, I am currently pretty frustrated with my older kiddo. It’s becoming clear to me that maybe my expectations for her, at least while she’s sick, are a little too high. She forgets to say please and thank you. Much more of her talking comes out as a whine. I have to ask her to repeat herself ad infinitum because I can’t understand her through her tears. And I continue to think that she should be able to control herself more. What?!

Just get your feelings under control kiddo! It was hardly a bump at all, why so many tears? It seems that you’re yelling “No!” at me a little too often for my liking!

My patience drips out of me as fast as their noses run. I just want my older daughter to be her usual, pretty composed self. Why is it so hard to remember that she’s only 2 (though getting close to 3 really) and sick to boot? I suppose as with any episode in parenting, it’s easy to imagine that this is the new normal. It’s easy to think that all of the hard work reminding kids to be courteous and helping them build resilience has been completely brushed aside and manners and fortitude are GONE FOREVER! This is what life is like now- not enough lap for too many kids and tears for days. Sigh.

Hopefully a little processing, reflection and some apologies will help me to remember that sickness passes and my kid is still who she generally is.

The question is, who am I in this? And who will I be the next time they’re sick? Maybe they just need to get sick a little more often so that I can have some more practice at this kind of patience? What a thing to wish.

I will say that I do wish that didn’t suck quite so much just when they need me a little more.

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