Last week I managed to come down with a nasty bug. I am not sure what it was. It was nasty. After a few miserable days I was beginning to feel only slightly better-just enough that if any of my kids got sick I would be well enough to take care of them.
It was good timing. Early Saturday morning my four year old became very ill, several times over. After I realized this was not a one time deal I set up a soft bed for her outside the bathroom and cuddled with her a bit before heading back to bed. That morning she lay on my lap along side her sister. I thought to myself, “I’ve got this.” My confidence was high. I knew I could do that day, even though I didn’t turn out to have as much energy as I had hoped.
To get through the day I went to the store in my miserable state and purchased medicine, popsicles, ice, a little thing of soda, a Pedialite alternative and anything else I could think of that would help upset stomachs and fevers. Afterward I picked up three movies from Redbox and I was set. Set for a day on the couch with sick kids.
By the end of the day I was exhausted. I had already had several days without sleep and my sickness was seeming to get the better of me. But I had two kids well, one better and one on the mend. That night, however….
Let me tell you, if you ever tell yourself that you have got it just take a step back and remember that you may not always have it. That night my special needs son got a fever. Great! But before I knew how bad I had to first change his diaper because he had leaked. That meant another sheet and two blankets to wash on top of the blankets from the night before. I figured at that rate I will never have an end to laundry. Oh wait, it never needs already.
Before I changed him though I had to get some bedding from the back laundry room. I did not want to wake anyone so I put the light on my phone and managed my way through the dark. Before I made it back my glasses fell off. No biggie, they had been doing that for weeks because they were broken and I was waiting for my new pair to come in. Two days prior a second screw had come out. When I picked these up off the floor the lens was out and another screw missing. Great!
It wasn’t that the screw meant much to me but that screw falling out was the end. I burst into tears. Literally. And really?! No shame though. I was sick, tired and worried about my kids. And I could not see very well.
In my blinded state, and still in the dark, I located the fever reducing medicine, the syringe to administer it, the diaper and wipes along with the thermometer. Oh yeah, I had my son’s dry clothes too. So, I managed to make the bed and change my son’s diaper. But I couldn’t find his clothes. I knew I had just had them. Whatever! I went to grab new ones, when I returned I promptly found the other clothes. Of course! So I grabbed those, the medicine and the thermometer. I wanted to have them nearby. I got him dressed. I gave him the medicine. But where was he thermometer? Really?! Really?! By that point I was feeling quite incompetent. I figured if there was an audience they would probably be laughing because I couldn’t keep track of anything. After a quick search I found it and took his temperature. Way too high for comfort. So, I sat with my phone questioning if I should call the doctor and doing research online to see if I was crazy or not.
It turns out I am not crazy. My son’s fever was down by morning and he is fine. My new glasses came in a day later and my children are all on the mend if not well.
But I think about that night, not so long ago. I didn’t feel like I had it. I did. Somehow that one little screw was the last little thing to make the big things seem like too much. We all get those. We all have those little things that seem to break us and bring us to tears or to our knees. We survive though, even if we think we will not. We hang in there and keep going even when we do not see an end. I keep going. I do not give myself another option. Anyone can do the same. Is it hard? Sure. Will you cry? Probably and possibly-that is okay. You’ve got this. I’ve got this. We’ve got this.