When Mom Is Sick The Show Must Still Go On.

Before I learned of my gluten issue, I was sick all the time.  A good friend use to say, “You are my healthiest sick friend.” It’s true.  Gluten sensitivity can suppress the immune system. My white blood cell count was lower than normal, therefore, I was sick, a lot.  But since I have abandoned all wheat and gluten in my diet I have been pretty healthy.  As a matter of fact, I can usually push through days that before would have had me on my back in bed.  But this week I lost a battle with an upper respiratory virus and I have been in bed for three days.

Since, my kids are older now, one would think mom taking some time off would not be a big deal. That is true in the sense that they can fix meals and dress themselves. But with age comes different needs.  Needs like, I need a fish. Yes, I said that correctly.  This week’s crisis is my youngest daughter’s friends all have pets. We have a cat, a very sassy cat. Not exactly the kind of pet you dream of as a child. After days of badgering us about a fish we gave in to her desires. You would think what’s the big deal? But you have to understand we have killed more fish in this family than the Starkist Tuna Company! We are very bad with fish. And did I mention I am sick? My poor husband looks like a deer in headlights trying to manage my duties while I am down. 

We just couldn’t take it anymore.  I made her research, online, endlessly, how to care for a fish.  Did she think of everything? What about the cat? He can pull chicken off the counter to the floor and devour it in ten seconds flat. He could kill a fish! She had an answers for every argument.  So I had to let her get that fish. She happily drug her very exhausted father to the store to purchase the right tank, food, and her fish. So happy and proud she prepared the water and tank for her new fish, Dart. There was just one catch, Dart needed to say in his store container for 24 hours until the tank was ready for him.  No one saw those directions until Dart was already in the tank. I thought this could be bad. It could shock him.  But he seemed fine all evening, swimming around and having fun in his new home. Ok, maybe, I was too reluctant to do this. This might be ok and she was happy. Unfortunately, this morning, Dart was dead at the bottom of the tank. This is why I hate having fish. My daughter was crying. I was upset. Why doesn’t anyone listen to me? Now we have crisis and I am sick. Honestly, I don’t do well with crisis when I am sick. I lost my patience and said, “I told you we kill fish here.” Not my proudest parenting moment.  Now the tears are flowing, my husband has the look any man does when his wife is sick,  and damn it, I am too tired to do this at 6:00 AM. She calmed down and I promised we could try another fish.  This time we will follow the directions. She seemed to be alright with that.

Everyone is off to school and work now, I have climbed back into bed. I am hoping for some rest before they return home for the day.  Not taking anything away from my husband, he tries to do it all when I am down.  It’s not an easy job.  As for my girls, they are not self centered or spoiled, but when it comes to mom, they simply can’t see why I can’t do everything like normal when I am sick.  Why can’t you drive me to the dance? Why can’t we get a fish today? Why can’t we go get new jeans tonight? Because, I have not been out of my pajamas for three days. Does that not seem odd to you?  I know some day they will understand. Until then, back under the covers for some peace, until I point out later,” I still wearing my bathrobe, so no, I will not bake you a cake!”

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