Sick Babies, Sick Parents

Where's MY soup?

Where’s MY soup?

I was prepared for our normal routine to get tossed aside while Frances was sick, but I wasn’t prepared for how disruptive it is to be a sick parent.

Franci spent a week with a high fever and another 5 days convalescing. She had little appetite and no energy, so we spent her few waking hours snuggling on the couch and trying desperately to find food she would eat. I tried everything, even resorting to ice cream (which despite loving on a normal basis, wouldn’t touch while sick). Since she was sick, I felt no guilt plying her with processed foods and fruit juice. I held her when she was fussy and indulged her every whim. After all, I believe in coddling sick members of my family.

After she started to feel better, I’m the one who took a turn for the worst. Our daily schedule broke down even more than when she was sick. For example, Franci doesn’t get to eat between mealtimes but while I was sick she got a cracker every time she started to bother me. Anything to keep her quiet while I moaned and rocked and ran to the bathroom.

I had no energy to try out 10 different healthy foods until I found one she would eat instead of spitting out or tossing on the floor. So once again I plied her with processed food in various shades of white (minus the ice cream). TV was watched in abundance and, at one desperate moment, she even got to hold my phone.

Whatever guilt I didn’t feel while babying my sick baby returned tenfold as I let her run wild during my own illness. We maintain a fairly strict order around here, but how does one manage when sick? More importantly, how am I supposed to deal with it once I’m out numbered??

How do you maintain household order, and your own sanity, when sickness hits your home? Do you call in reinforcements? Let it run its course and hope it doesn’t take too long to return to normal? Or do you have a contingency system in place?


  1. Coriander says:

    That’s exactly how I manage when I get sick with two kids but not sick enough to ask The Papa to stay home from work. You do what you need to do to get through it. Sounds like you had it bad.

  2. As someone with no reinforcements available I have done exactly what you did…too much TV and too many snacks. You gotta do whatever you can to survive sometimes.

  3. On occasion my husband has been able to stay home from work. This method still involves too much TV and junk food but at least then I’m not the one providing it!

  4. Michele says:

    It’s so comforting to hear that I’m not the only one using these methods!

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