My eldest daughter came down with a stomach bug– YES- that awful thing! One minute she was bubbling with energy, running after a ball at her soccer game. Just a few hours later she was back in bed, looking pale.
Then it started …
Fever, vomiting, scrubbing sinks, endless worry, loads of laundry, up all night holding her head over the sink – it was exhausting.
Since she was sick, we cancelled all of our activities for the next couple of days. We were homebodies, stuck together in the house while we trudged through the steps of recovery.
But in a very weird way I also found this time … rewarding?
We were forced to finally stop. We didn’t rush around activity to activity or birthday party to next event. We were together. We talked. I actually listened and answered her questions, versus a “Hold on, sweetie”. I stayed with her and rubbed her head until she slept … and then I stayed and watched her sleep.
You know how beautiful they are when they sleep.
I read her books – and rather than the chapter books and novels we have her read for school, we pulled out the old picture books from little sister’s closet. I reread all of her favorites. We sat together really enjoying those wonderfully illustrated pages of “Jamberry”, “Good Night Gorilla”, and “Tiny Tiger”. There was no goal, no itinerary, no checklist.
Now, the thermometers and vomit are behind us. She is on the road to wellness and I am, of course, very thankful.
But there it is, mixed in with dirty sheets and lost hours of sleep — the truth. I actually enjoyed spending time with my child at home, despite the stomach bug.
Maybe we should do this more often… minus the vomit.