Saturday, December 3, 2011

Under the Weather

I haven't been this sick in years. Like coughing, congested, stuffed up head kind of sick. As a child this was basically my everyday existence. But as an adult, I don't really get sick like this anymore. Today it occurred to me that I should have gone to the doctor this week. That's how often I get to the doctor - I had forgotten it was even an option. And also an indication of how cruddy I've been feeling, because I really don't like going to the doctor. 

As I've been choking and struggling to breathe, it's brought to mind memories of having severe respiratory infections or pneumonia when I was a kid. There were times I'd be laying in bed all by myself, literally gasping for breath because my airways were all blocked up with snot and mucous (lovely visual, no?), and thinking, "This is it. I'm going to die."

Bethany's been battling a cold, Lucy and Connor have coughs, and Mathilda is sick with a respiratory infection. She's on three kinds of meds, including her second course of antibiotics in two weeks since she just had an ear infection last week. On top of the antibiotic, she's on steroids and breathing treatments three times a day. My baby girl being sick and miserable is infinitely worse than being sick myself. I can't stand to hear her coughing and choking, knowing exactly how she feels. And it's maddening feeling like crap and caring for a sick kid, particularly when she doesn't sleep all night, like last night. I was thinking how odd that I'm sick like this when I haven't been in ages. But then I realized it's helping me be patient with Mathilda when the medications are making her surly and hyper, when she keeps me up all night with her fussing and wanting to cuddle, and when she is clearly feeling really yucky but can't quite express it in so many words (often resulting in frustrated tears). Because I know I'm feeling quite like Mathilda right now, and she is just a little thing who can't help herself  or communicate clearly. I don't want my girl to feel like I'm feeling, and I know she is feeling even worse. I have a new perspective, and for that I am thankful.

Now hopefully she'll get her stinky little butt to sleep soon, since she hardly slept last night and hasn't napped all day today. Which means she's so over-tired that she's totally slap happy: singing, talking about cookies, squirming around, listing all the people she loves over and over again, piling up pillows so she can climb on them and then roll off, and in general doing everything she can to prevent anybody else from getting any sleep too. With any luck we'll both be feeling better tomorrow.

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