Moms aren’t allowed to get sick.
All moms joke about this, especially in the middle of cold and flu season, when we’re running ourselves ragged and wiping multiple runny noses, but it really is true. I mean, who the heck has the time for that?
Certainly, not me. Though here I am, tea and tissues in hand, feeling miserable and laying on the couch. I tried to write this post days ago, but I fell asleep during my toddler’s nap time, something I haven’t done since he was, like, a month old. But napping instead of posting has been the least of my sins.
Seriously, I have been the worst mom this week. I think I’ve done, oh, about 10 percent of what I normally do.
But…everyone’s still alive, so I guess that’s something. And when I really think about it, my failings as a parent actually have a silver lining. Here’s how I’m looking at it:
I’ve been allowing way too much television. And television without my usual added educational commentary, like counting along with him and the Count or pointing out the excellent sharing that Buddy, Shiny, Tiny and Don are doing on Dinosaur Train.
But…there’s cuddling and hair stroking and all sorts of sweet snuggles as my toddler lays in my lap and I drift in and out of consciousness on the couch. Is this really a bad thing? I say no.
I forfeited the cookie fight at the grocery store. I usually make sure he’s well-fed before we leave the house, but in my cold-induced haze, I forgot about snack time. So I grabbed the nearest pack of chocolate-chip cookies and broke one out. Success and silence. Then…“One more! One more! One more!”
But…he remembered his manners and, completely unprompted, said please and thank you. And come on, it’s a cookie, not crack.
The coughing has seriously compromised my crafting abilities. Which are pretty pathetic to begin with. My creativity is at an all-time low, and I’m honestly just doing my best to put sentences together and stay awake.
But…we have a lot of toys. A freaking lot of toys. What’s old is new again as we dig into the bottoms of the baskets and our extra bathtub (which, being extra, of course serves as toy storage in a city apartment).
Speaking of toys, they have taken over my living room. I’m not even making an effort to straighten up during the day, even though my toddler’s version of the “Clean Up” song is ridiculously cute: “Queen up, queen up, everybody, where…queen up…share.”
But…all the toys are, um, very accessible.
We’ve barely left the house for days. I’m sick. I’m tired. It’s winter. Personally, I think that someone should throw me a parade for getting us both dressed by noon every day and to preschool twice this week.
But…two words: Polar Vortex. Eff that.
I didn’t go in when he was calling for me the other night. “Mommy, come here! Mommy, come in! Mommy, puh-weeeese!!!” It was past his bedtime, he didn’t want to go to sleep, and I had a severe case of laryngitis and couldn’t sing to him. Also, I just needed a break.
But…it was a great opportunity for bonding with Daddy.
I’m taking the easy road with too many things. You want to listen to “What Does the Fox Say?” one more time? OK. And one more time (again) after that? OK. And…yeah, you get the idea.
But…well, I really can’t think of any upside to that one.
I’m not thinking of these rationales as justifications. (Most of the time.) I’m just trying to keep some perspective on an off week.
So mamas, if you’re feeling guilty about all of the “bad” parenting you’re doing on sick days, remember this: You are not the worst mom. Even though you really want to crawl under the covers and have your own mom take care of you, you’re still getting out of bed every day (eventually) and feeding, caring for and loving another human being all day long. You are actually the best mom.