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You’re Not Imagining It – Taking Care of Kids During Flu Season Is Really Stinking Hard

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Taking care of little kids on a daily basis is not for the faint of heart, and taking care of sick kids can be even more of a challenge. The hardest few weeks of my journey as a parent (so far) was when we moved, my youngest turned 1, and then he and the 2yo came down with Hand, Foot, and Mouth disease within 2 days of each other.

The house was full of boxes (the Motrin was in one of them!), neither kid was sleeping, and it seemed like it would never end.

Now, flu season is upon us. I’d be lying if I said my kids had been healthy since Christmas, even though I take hand sanitizer everywhere we go and wash hands like a woman on a mission (which I am).

There is nothing, nothing harder than taking care of sick kids when you yourself also feel like crap.

When little kids are sick, they don’t understand what’s going on. They don’t want to rest. They don’t want you to wipe their noses 16 times an hour. They don’t want to take their medicine. They don’t want you to put them to bed early and they most certainly don’t want you to stop holding them.

Like, ever.

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Well, friends. It's happened AGAIN. Honestly, I'm not all that surprised…. . Afterall, we are smack dab in the middle of the worst cold + flu season I've seen yet and his immune system never really had a chance to recover from the chemo before being thrust back into the germ-filled world of daycare so I could go back to work and start getting a paycheck again. . So…. Tuesday night I arrived home from work at close to 10 PM to find Abby with a sore throat so bad she couldn't sleep until we gave her some ibuprofen. It did the trick and after that she slept and was fine the next day at daycare and other than being more snotty and having a cougg, she's doing ok. . Well… then last night, Carter was up crying in the middle of the night (he's been sleeping through the night for some time now) and as we watched him on the monitor to try to see what was the issue, we saw he had developed a lovely cough and every time he coughed, he started crying. So we assumed throat, Tim gave him some ibuprofen and offered his sippy, and he went back asleep. He was fine most the day today other than being a bit more clingy, snotty, and coughing. . Well, you can't have a cough or be snotty If you're going to be sedated + intubated sooo we had to reschedule Friday's scans AGAIN. The next available date was March 11th 🙁 and his MD isn't even in that week so we'll have to wait til the next week for results. . At this point, I think I'll be more surprised if he is finally healthy enough by then to get his scans than I will be if he isn't and we have to reschedule again. It has now been 3 months of sickness. Every 2-3 weeks since the middle of November, Carter has caught a new virus accompanied with fever and the whole shebang. I've had more sick days since my return to work than I ever did in the 6 years working prior. 😳😬 . Don't get me wrong, he hasn't developed any serious complications or secondary infections from them. And we are SOO INCREDIBLY GRATEFUL for this. But we also kind of need these scans, so a few healthy days surrounding his scheduled scan date would be AMAZING. 🙏🙏 . . . #hepatoblastoma #followupscans #mri #ct #sickbabies #poortiming #shottyimmunesystem

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There’s nothing you can do but try to distract them, try to keep them clean and comfortable, and try to hang onto the last shred of your sanity (and patience) until the ride comes to an end.

But here’s the thing that 3+ years of parenting have taught me – it always, always comes to an end.

There is a season for everything. Everything is a phase.

And one day, the thing that’s going to come to an end is your babies living under your roof, needing you every single day, and when that happens, I doubt we’ll even remember how we felt like worthless zombies during the long days and nights when they were sick.

You’ll be happy you were there for them, that you gave it your all, and I know that deep in their little souls, they’ll always be better for it, too.