Displaced Stay At Home Californian in rural N. Carolina

The Many Faces of Joy

The Many Faces of Joy

Thursday, January 26, 2012


I have a little one in bed, sick with a high fever today. What I am about to say next will most likely make some of you shake your heads and wonder if I've lost my marbles but I enjoy playing the role of "Mommy with a sick child" now that my little ones are not so little anymore.

I know, it sounds crazy right? It sounds like Loco-town. I have to explain. My children as babies and toddlers were so fiercely independent that I was not able to coddle them for long or spoon feed them their food or tote them around on my back or front in a strappy carrying device because at 10 months they started running and I spent the rest of the time chasing them around and because they wouldn't let me feed them anymore and because they were squirming out of my lap to go and "me do it" themselves. I remember at 7 months having to find finger foods that could sustain a small baby because she saw everyone else eating with a fork and spoon and refused to let me put anything in her mouth from that point on. I remember an 18 month old insisting she wear panties like all the big kids and letting her older sibling potty train her because in her mind she was not a baby anymore.

I have a childhood memory of being very sick with a fever and being in bed. I remember my Mom bringing a futon next to my bed and sleeping on the floor with me. I remember someone bringing me a bowl of ice chips to suck on because I couldn't keep any food down. I remember the a lamp being turned on in the middle of the night so someone could sit me up for sips of water and to take medicine. I remember feeling very pampered and loved.

My little ones are not so little anymore. They only need me for the really big bumps and bruises and even then, rush to scamper off to the next thing they need to do or fun thing to explore. Once in a while they will be so tired they dissolve into tears and then they need a hug but I don't get to do many things for them anymore. This must mean I've done a good job. But in the meantime, I crave those moments when they want to sit still on my lap and let me caress their hair or rub their swollen little bellies or hum in their ear. And when they are sick they will lay very still and be very quiet and they want their Mommy to come and sit with them and read them a long book or tell them a silly story and they will let me feed them soup and pet their hands. We get to cancel all our regular plans and stay in bed or watch a movie and get up only to go pee or get some water or find the thermometer.

And just one or two sick days will refill my Mommy batteries and then they are off running and playing and needing me only for a snack or a quick hug or help with a math problem. Some friends and family have suggested that this means I need to get a job and go back to work and some have suggested it means I need another little one to occupy my time. We will see which one wins out but for today my heart needed a little bit of one on one time with my poor sick girl.

1 comment:

Conchita said...

Was so sweet... read that from you!!! You are a such a great mom.