Thanksgiving 2013, our baby’s second Turkey Day, was wonderful. We spent time with family and had lots of fun. But with the turkey bird, stuffing and laughter came a nasty cold/sinus infection for mommy and baby. It has been a week-long affair, thus far, waxing and waning from one hour [or day] to the next. Talk to any parent, and one thing we all seem to have in common is that utterly helpless feeling you get when your child is sick. The glassy eyes. The runny nose. The rattley chest. Or maybe it’s a tummy bug. Whatever it is, you just want to take away the icky-ness and make it all better.
Unfortunately, the icky-ness must run its course. So while mommy pops Day/Nyquil, like Skittles, guzzles OJ and blows her nose every minute-and-a-half, my poor little lady is completely dependent on mom and dad to suck the green goo out of her nose and try to ease the pain sans meds.
So, thanks to some serious education from my “village” of current and veteran parents (and some help from the Internet), we’ve managed to squeeze some comfort and – believe it or not – FUN into this mommy/daughter seasonal malady.
Lessons we’ve learned are as follows:
- Popsicles are awesome. Not only are they a fun, tasty treat, but they’re great for soothing sore throats, or adding some “cool” to a hot fever. For tiny tots like ours, popsicles in the bathtub are hassle/mess free! Which brings me to my next lesson learned…
- Tubby time is a God send. If your kid is crabby, put her/him in water. Apparently, the same thing goes for a sick kid. Tubby time is Nora’s favorite, and a wonderful distraction. The warm, steamy air helps to loosen her phlegm and clears out her sinuses. Score and double score!
- “PJs all day” isn’t just for college students. Since I am also sick at the moment, I can attest to the truth of this one. When I feel ucky, I just want to stay in my jammies all day. I have no qualms about letting my sick kiddo do the same. A comfy baby is a happ[ier] baby.
- A movie a day keeps boredom (and sick-inspired tantrums) at bay. Because we have a very busy and inquisitive toddler on our hands, and because exploring the world on two legs is still new and very fun – I was slightly bummed to find out that sickness (in toddler terms) does not necessarily equate to an overabundance of willful rest and down time (like it does for mommy, and most grown ups). I’ve learned that there is no shame in throwing Curious George or Finding Nemo in to inspire rest and snuggle time. 9.5 times out of 10, she is asleep before Nemo even gets lost. Sleep is necessary, and I’ll do whatever it takes to initiate those restorative REM cycles.
- Back to the boob. I still nurse my now thirteen-month-old from time to time. Usually once a day at this point. But over the last week I’ve stepped it back up a notch. Breast milk contains proteins called immunoglobulins that attach to bacteria and viruses that enter the body and actually destroy them before they can be absorbed. And, with antiviral and antibacterial properties, breast milk is absolutely the best medicine.
- Sniffles and stories go together like PB and J. This week has provided optimal story time opportunities. Once she is snuggled down and in rest mode, Nora seems to enter a sniffle-induced Zen state where books are all the rage – even more so than usual. I’ve been taking advantage of this opportunity to read read READ with her, and work on vocabulary. This week she moved beyond simply parroting random words, to actually saying and pointing to a few things. Meaningful vocabulary outside of the usual directives – an awesome milestone, and definitely the silver lining to this week of “sick” in the Stager household.
Katy Stager, proud mom and wife, is a fan of all things "active." She's a marathon running, swimming, cycling, hiking, art loving, community volunteering, book reading, Instagraming, Animal Kingdom shopping kind of mom who does it all with her little girl in tow. A Bloomsburg University grad, she now studies homemaking, successful childrearing, and thriftiness through the school of life's successful parenting program.