Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Being an Example.

 Being a parent is about being a good example.  Being a role model.  Helping a little being figure out how to behave in a situation.  Being a parent is darn hard.

We had a stomach bug visit this weekend.  One of those viruses that leaves you laying on the bathroom floor, unsure if  body fluids are going to be coming from the front or back.  More than once I had to do a baby shove off and toddler jump, to make a mad dash to fall into a heap in front of the toilet.

The good of a illness falling on a weekend is that we don't miss a lot of school, or work.  The bad is nothing got done in our 'down' time.  Groceries weren't purchased, life wasn't cleaned or organized.  Who am I kidding, lets just say life is less organized and less clean.  There are piles of vomit laundry and clothes everywhere, and well lets just not look at that 'contaminated' bathroom too close (thank-god we have two).

Anyway, on Monday I was home sick.  I stayed in bed, cramping and still producing grossness.  The girls had somebody looking after them, so I actually got some sleep and started to feel slightly human.  My mood was grim though, here I should have been in bliss.  I had quiet and rest, something I never get.  Unfortunately it was so much like when I was on bed rest last year.  Same time of year, same nausea feeling, same having others take care of my children.  Helpless, and somewhat useless.  It gave me time to stew in how much I hated bed-rest, and the months I spent laying in our downstairs.

My mood, combined with the stomach flu and not eating for two days continued to be dim.  K was in an equally sore mood that evening.  Her tummy hurt again.  We battled to get through the typical routine.  Finally she was in bed. Then the crying started, followed by whinny screams.  I went and layed down with her and rubbed her belly.  I knew how she felt, helpless and crummy with a aching belly.

I told her, "We couldn't dwell on how bad we feel.  We have to think of happy things.  What type of sprinkles do you like best?"

K was not going to budge.  Tears still streaming.  I rubbed the belly more. Finally she said,  "Don't want to talk about, sniff, sniff things I like.  I just want to cry and feel bad, sniff, sniff."

"Oh, come on K we really need to try even when we don't feel good.  We aren't going to feel any better by just thinking of unhappy thoughts."


"Okay, I'll rub your belly for a bit."  I then sang my 'mommy' songs that only my precious children find comforting.  I told her that I liked purple sprinkles.

As I rose from her bed, she sniffed a bit more and said just above a whisper, "Red, I think those are the best."
A few hours later she coated her bed, pj's and floor with more putrid vomit.  She then proclaimed that her vomit made the shape of a fish and we both smiled at each other.

Its not easy.  But, I don't like being a hypocrite.  I want to be that example for her.  Its easy to let your problems, memories  and thoughts cover you like a blanket, and even strangle the joy of each day.  And yes there are times to just cry and get it out.

I do think though that even in the face of days of stomach flu, one needs to think about what their favorite color of sprinkles are.

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