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Monday, March 12, 2012

What to do When Mama Gets Sick

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If you are a mother, you know that you don’t have time to get sick. There are no sick days for mothers. So what do you do when you are the mother? This past week I had a series of minor problems that snowballed, thankfully nothing that required hospitalization, just multiple trips to doctors.

  • Eat lightly if you can. Stick to foods like broth, lentils, rice, Remember the BRAT diet? Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, Toast (tea). In our house I like to keep some rice milk for those times people are sick. Add a little cinnamon it tastes like horchata and the cinnamon helps
  • Stay Hydrated – if you feel so bad you can only do one thing this is the one.  Stick to clear liquids, like herbal teas and broth. If you have any Overnight Crockpot Broth now is the time to break it out.  If you fail to stay hydrated you may find yourself in the Emergency Room with an IV stuck in your arm. Believe me it is not a fun thing.
  • Get Rest – Let that laundry wait, don’t worry about vacuuming. You can catch up on all that later. Now is the time to be selfish. Go to bed early, or if you are home during the day, go ahead and let those kids watch a movie while you take a one eyed nap on the couch.
  • Take a Shower or Bath – It is amazing what a good shower or if you have time a bath does for you when you are under the weather. I love using essential oils in my shower or bath.
  • Allow Others to Help  I struggle with this one personally. Remember that laundry I told you can wait. Let someone else do it. It will be okay if they don’t do it quite the way you do.  Maybe your husband can cook dinner, not quite the way you do, but hey at least the kids will have something to eat. Maybe a neighbor can go to the store for you.
  • Slow Down – Prioritize and step back from all non essential duties. That means volunteer work, as well as any projects you may be working on.
  • Delegate – This one works whether you have an acute condition or a chronic one. Delegate things that need to be done at home, and work.
  • Prioritize – The first priority when you are sick is to take care of yourself. Because if you do not take of yourself how can you take care of your family?
  • Say NO – Don’t feel bad about saying NO. Feel free to step back from social obligations, when you are sick whether acute of chronic it is time to do less for others and more for yourself.
How to you take care of yourself when you are under the weather.


Suzette said...

Good stuff! When I was about six months postpartum with an exclusively breastfed and extremely cranky baby in my arms nearly all day I came down with a stomach virus! So not cool! These tips would have been so helpful. Now I have them for next time!

Lisa - the Granola Catholic said...

I had developed some of these strategies when I was pregnant with #2. I needed that extra sleep and I had an 18 month old who did NOT nap. I became a pro at the "one eye nap".

Treasa √Čire said...

I'm a nanny, not a mother, but with the amount of time I'm there, I might as well be! I'm normally a very hands-on nanny, constantly finding activities and lessons to do with the kids. Usually the only time that television is on is if it was turned on before I arrived. If I'm sick, I still need to go to work. I've never taken a sick day since I've started nannying, because often times the parents have no back up. So, while I'm there, I tell the kids that it's a special lazy day. We watch movies most of the day or they play quietly (and separately). We eat leftovers or something canned. I let them stay in pajamas. Depending on *how* sick I am, we play board games or I Spy.

I think it's also important to mention that if you are a parent who gets sick, it is perfectly fine to get a sitter to come and take the kids away for a few hours while you take the time to recuperate. Have the sitter take them window shopping in the mall or ask her to run errands like picking up fruit and veggies at the store. Grandmas and Grandpas are great too!

Lisa - the Granola Catholic said...

Treasa, great strategies for coping with sick days. So often we forget that is okay to have a lazy day and not get anything accomplished. When your body is healing it needs to rest. I especially love the idea of letting someone take the kids somewhere for you, like the park or dollar movie.

In my particular circumstances, I am writing as someone who does not have easy access to neighbors or grandparents.

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