Little E has had his fair share of illnesses these past 6 weeks. It started with vomiting and diarrhea, then a full body rash, then severe croup that required hospitalisation, then hand foot & mouth disease and now he’s fighting off a secondary chest infection of conjunctivitis! Oh how I’m looking forward to seeing a healthy and happy little boy who doesn’t look so miserable! It breaks my heart.
Before being a mum, I knew kids got sick and I had heard talk about children in childcare/daycare picking up bugs, but what I didn’t know was how common these ailments were and that for many children, it was normal for them to go through their first number of months of starting daycare picking up various nasties. I did not even realise that even sending Little E to daycare just one day a week would mean he was susceptible to so many bugs and get so sick so often! Now I realise that it doesn’t matter – one day or five. The other thing I didn’t realise is that so many childhood illnesses (like hand, foot & mouth disease) show no symptoms when they’re contagious, making it even harder to control because most of the time as a parent, you’re none the wiser.
My mother guilt has been working overtime. You know how it goes “I mustn’t have been feeding him enough fruit & veggies if he’s getting sick” or “he looks a bit on the lighter side, I think he’s lost weight, is there something wrong with what I’m feeding him?” Or “Am I not being careful enough with hygiene?”
These are the questions I have asked myself many times and to make matters worse, I’ve had people comment on his weight which made me feel even more guilty (a Doctors visit has confirmed all is normal though).
I’ve actually felt bad telling people that Little E was sick again in fear of being judged because my son was sick all the time and that I mustn’t be looking after him properly. It wasn’t until I got speaking to mums at playgroup and other friends who told me they went through the same thing and that their children had gone through the same illnesses. I felt somewhat relieved and I learned that what Elliott had gone through was quite common. Perhaps other mums felt the same way I do, perhaps this is why it is not spoken about openly, perhaps this is why I didn’t really know how ‘normal’ what Elliott was going through was?
Another thing no one really prepared me for was the raw emotion involved in seeing your child sick and suffering. Oh the feeling of helplessness when all you can give them is Panadol for a mouth full of sores that don’t allow them to swallow or eat. The gut wrenching feeling of knowing that your poor baby cannot tell you that their tummy hurts, that their mouth hurts, that they feel sick, that they’re hungry or that they have a headache because they can’t talk and their only way to communicate is by pointing or crying. It has gutted me to no end.
So, I’m hanging onto the comment that many people have made to me, Little E’s exposure to these illnesses will help build his immunity and that it’s better to happen now and not in his first year of school when he’d miss out on a lot of valuable learning. But, the typical worrier in me still has something in the back of my mind, “perhaps Little E may always be a child that gets sick or is susceptible to chest infections?” Only time will tell and I’m sure (and I hope) that in time I will look back and realise that it was a necessary phase that he had to go through, a phase that has passed and we can experience months of a happy and healthy bouncing little boy.
Did your children go through the same?
MUMMY MONDAYS FEATURED POSTS
Link up your blog with Mummy Mondays! There is no particular theme, simply link up a post from the last week or a new post . I’ll even pick two of my favourite posts to feature in Mummy Mondays next week! There are just a couple of little things I ask you to do to participate, to get the word out there and make this heaps of fun:
1. Follow The Multitasking Mummy on Facebook, Pinterest, Google Friend Connect &/or Networked Blogs
2. I would be very appreciative if you could grab the Mummy Mondays button (found in the right sidebar) and post it on your sidebar and/or at the bottom of your post to help share the linkup and get heaps of people involved.
3. Add your post URL to the linky.
4. Visit the blogs of your fellow MM’s and leave some lovely comments. If you can’t visit all of the blogs, pick a number of blogs you can commit to reading and leave some comment love. There are some lovely bloggers from the USA that join us so don’t forget to pop back and check our their posts as they are a day behind!