I doubt sick day will ever mean the same thing to me again. There was a time when I could take a day off to sit on my butt and re-centre, recover from a hang-over, or,occasionally, recover from illness. Now when I have a sick day it is a day spent caring for my offspring while he recovers from illness, doing any variety of things that might help - renting videos, making soup, cuddling, nose-wiping, bum-wiping, book-reading, whine-filled trips to deserted parks (to avoid spreading too many germs) or long walks (that with luck end with a napping baby and a coffee-break for mom) - and the concept of taking a sick day for myself is completely alien.
I have been "understandably" run-down due to the whole baby-making gig, but this last week I have also been fighting off the hints of a cold. I awoke Saturday with a sore throat and headache that got both mildly better as the day wore on (and with the addition of only two tylenol). Sunday was the same, though the evening brought the symptoms back with a vengeance. I am thankful that one both days I have parental backup and I could do a little less. I actually thought I had licked the damned thing when this morning I awoke with a barely aching throat... then I tried to move. My body is achey all over and feels profoundly tired. I think this is a side-effect of all the work it has done fighting off my cold, but adding that to pregnancy and the fact that my husband needed to go to work today was all together unpleasant.
I was short-tempered with my son today, who I suspect may be coming down with the same cold, as we prepared to go to Granville Island to meet friends (who unfortunately had to cancel on us). All I wanted to do was crawl back into bed with the chocolate-almond ice cream I picked up at the store last night and watch TV. Or sleep. Instead I was trying to convince a crabby toddler to give me some peace while I assembled out picnic lunch. I finally caved and stuck a Thomas the Tank video on the computer while I got out shit all sorted out (and put on pants).
As I mentioned our friends couldn't make it today, which just made me want to stay home more - but I knew that Sebastian would be hellish in or out and at least if we were out I could keep changing the scenery. As we approached the island the clouds looked ominous and I was losing my faith that this was a good idea. But I was committed, I had no back up, worse came to worse I had loads of towels and a change of clothes for Boo if the clouds split and drenched us.
Thank goodness that never happened, we played in the sandbox for a bit with some other brave toddlers then walked over to the market to watch boats and eat lunch. By this point the clouds broke and we had a lovely lunch in the sun, Sebastian danced to the live music while I ate a giant salad. We then headed inside for grapes - I rarely buy them, but somehow Sebastian has connected them quite powerfully to our weekly trips to Granville Island. I can easily buy just enough for him for that day - and will start feeling less guilty about it (and possible buy more) when they aren't coming all the way from Chile.
We then popped into a shop where I picked up a part of a secret gift for a friend (she might see this) - and then to another store to get the rest of it. Sebastian was wonderful and charming so we went and watched the "King of the Ukulele" play. Sebastian LOVES this guy and totally rocked out to his jams.
We chatted with another mother that Sebastian had befriended - she was wearing this amazing necklace whose pendant was made out of arbutus and pointed me towards the store she got it from. After some shared snacks and a hug we headed over to OrganiX to check it out. The necklaces are awesome and I also found some really cute baby stuff. The price of this stuff always gives me a little shock, but since most of little bean's clothes will be hand-me-downs I am thinking I can justify "splurging" on more responsible new duds.
In the store he continued to charm and delight, we talked with the woman there for a good 20-30 minutes (without buying anything, sigh, if I hadn't already bought that gift I would have purchased something there). I have one more birthday this week so may head back - though I am going to look for something while I am out tomorrow too - and I might, if I am feeling better, sew a little something for both women.
Sebastian was both disappointed and relieved to leave the island, most of our drive home was delightful until he threw his snack on the floor... we came home, played quietly and read a bit before going down for a nap. During this time my feeling of sick returned full-force, all I wanted to do was crash, but also wanted to a) get the child to nap and b) clean up, start dinner and repack our bag for the beach tomorrow. So sleep waited, Andrew got held up at work, which was alright - only 30 minutes or so - and Sebastian woke up, crabby and irritable, wanting to play with playdough and whine. We played a new "game" called "mom isn't talking to you unless you talk normally - or mom can't understand you, child, unless you use your calm voice." It meant talking to myself a whole lot (or my imaginary friends) but seemed to work, I don't know when we got to the point where I was reacting to whining, but that's gotta stop. I hate that shit and it can send me over the edge like nothing else. Generally we communicate very well, but every once in a while he becomes the master of whine.
Obviously part of it is his being sick, so I was patient and understanding while being firm - it sounds way easier on paper - I have been working very hard on keeping my temper in check, as lately my emotions have been so close to the surface and I have a tendency to be a "yelly mom" when the edges start to fray. It has been an up and down fight, days like this tend to be more difficult but also tend to give me renewed perspective. A sense that "I can stand this" when it feels like I can't stand another minute of it (and then, somehow, I always do). So, anyways, being firm and patient is hard but yet it really worked. He would eventually calmly ask for what he wanted and get it - and if it worked today then I am betting it will work even better when we are all feeling 100%.
I was going to complain about what a pain it is not to get to wallow in my sickness any more, but