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Posted on Sep 27, 2014 in Devotional | 8 comments

Sick

I knew it would be hard to have two babies.  In spite of what my brain knew, I made the choice to have them just 15 months apart.  I told myself to expect long, sleepless nights and difficult times.  I told myself that I’d laugh about it, remind myself of the great privilege of having them, remind myself of how I’d prayed longingly for them.  I told myself that God would give me the strength to handle it gracefully.

That was before sleep deprivation and the challenges of dealing with two crying babies took over.

That was before I experienced back-to-back pregnancies that were crazy-hard.

With my broken body and my roller coaster hormones, my brain seems to have gone into hiding.  My emotions are running amuck and I can say with bleary-eyed stutters that this time in my life is hard.

The kids got sick the second week in July.  Then their dad got it.  After taking care of all of them for a few days each, I was hit with it.  Mine lasted two weeks, and I still got to take care of all of them during it.  A few weeks later, we all got it again.  In the middle of my bout with it, my grandfather died.  I spent the week trying my best to ignore the dizziness, congestion, coughing, and proliferation of snot so I could help with arrangements.  My grandfather was a wonderful man and I felt he was worth it.  (I’m working on a tribute to him for this blog, but I want it to be special and my brain isn’t up to “special” right now.)

Three weeks after it started, I finally woke up feeling normal.  Three days after my congestion finally went away, Eliana started sneezing again.  Then wheezing.  A trip to the ER in the middle of the night set our minds at ease that she was okay, but soon Charlie started sneezing and wheezing too.  Shoot.  If this goes anything like the previous two illnesses, I’ll come down with it in a couple days and it’ll be a month before I’m better.  (In Jesus’ name, I’m not going to get sick this time.  I’m just being dramatic.)

This time around it’s been several nights in a row of one or both of them not able to sleep because of congestion.  We’ve been walking up and down the driveway in the middle of the night, praying desperately for healing, hoping the cool night air will help them to breathe clearly again.  Cold medicine doesn’t help my children to sleep.  Instead it makes them extremely grumpy and restless.

I remind myself that I’m the luckiest mom in the world that my children only have colds.  I have a friend whose daughter has lost her hair from chemo, which is actually one of the least of the difficulties with chemo.  Other friends have kids with asthma and life-threatening allergies.  We are so blessed.  We have so much to be thankful for.  I really did pray for the blessing of being the mama, the one they turn to when they are at their weakest.

As grateful as I am for the relative health of our children, right now, TODAY, I am bone tired and ready for a nap.  Except 15 minutes after Eliana fell asleep this afternoon, Charlie woke up.  At least in those few minutes I had the presence of mind to eat a bowl of cereal…

In case you’re wondering, we still have our mother’s helper here a couple days a week.  Because of her my house isn’t in shambles.  I’m going to credit her and Rick’s parents with the reality that I’m lucid enough to spend a few precious moments writing down my thoughts.  I don’t want to think about what it’d be like right now without them.

There is so much to be grateful for and I’m truly going to feel that gratitude – just as soon as I can sleep for longer than an hour at a time.

8 Comments

  1. Hang in there Sweetheart, it will get better. You will laugh at your feelings someday. Then you will wonder where the time (days, weeks, months and years) went. All days are blessed days because our Father loves us. 🙂

    • Barb, I actually laughed at myself a few days later, thinking about how much worse sleep deprivation makes everything seem. I can’t imagine what people with sleep disorders deal with! I need my sleep!

  2. Hi Kimberly! We had two other children when our twins were born, so I know all about sleep deprivation! Your main focus right now is your children. So don’t fret if the house isn’t always picked up! You can clean house in twenty years when they are gone! Try to catch a nap when they do. And just remember to love them today—Tomorrow they will be gone and you will wonder where the time went. The years goes by so fast! We have been empty nesters for 10 years, now. But I still miss not having my kids at home! Looking forward to Christmas this year when they hope to all be here. Blessings to you and your beautiful family and I will pray for better health for all of you! Maybe the colder weather will take the “Bug” away. It was good to see Grandma Barbara at church this AM. Linda

    • Thanks, Linda. I’m not sure how your survived two older kids AND twins! That’s hard to imagine. But God gives us grace for those days, doesn’t He?

  3. Since I HAVE chatted with you over a cup of coffee, I feel I have an advantage here.
    I think it’s refreshing and authentic that you’re being completely honest and open in these posts. You are in a very hard time as a parent, and your kids are in developmentally dense seasons. Add revolving sickness to the mix, and you’ve got a bitter cocktail. And you have no choice but to drink it. Do you look back on life as a struggling single woman and think “I was on vacation and just didn’t know it”? Remember when we could call in a sick or personal day for no reason? I don’t miss that season, but I do miss having that option.

    Give yourself the gift of a good cry. I find it to be very cathartic. Nicholas Sparks movies are good for this (if nothing else). You’re in a hard season, and you need the release. It’s cleansing.

    I was so bone-tired exhausted, i barely remember Joshua’s early years. I hate that. But I gave up on the nap idea. Too much pressure on myself. Mindless TV was my escape. Lots of Food Network.

    Will be interested to read your next installment. Hope it’s not “How I Ran Away From Home.”

    • Thanks for your encouragement, Kim. I was thinking about my next installment being something like, “Wah. Sleep deprivation makes me very whiny.” For the next two nights after I posted this, Charlie slept really well and Kristina took Eliana. So I had two nights in a row of 7 hours straight sleep. I felt like a new person. Then I felt a little ridiculous for whining – especially since I have so much help. But the reality of days like that is raw and difficult. After reading your comment, I’m glad I posted it.

  4. Kimberly, You are a wonderful person and I think a wonderful mother. You are truly blessed. I know it can be difficult. I had FOUR of them of course not ALL babies at once)and some days was almost ready to send them back to (wherever) But I still loved them dearly as I know you do. I know you can hardly bring yourself to say this or realize this at this time but “THIS TOO SHALL Pass” I cried when everyone of mine went off to kindergarten and again when they left for college and you probably will too. Just hang in there and be sure to make time to spend with God every day and he WILL be your strength

    • Thanks, Nancy. I know that when I just had Eliana there were times I felt overwhelmed, but now that I have two I wonder what the big deal was with one. Seems now like it’d be so easy. I’m really trying to do better about spending time with God every day. I often can’t even find the time to get a shower though, so it’s something I have to work really hard on. When I’m doing that though, there are much fewer of these whiny days! 🙂

If we were chatting over a cup of coffee, what would you tell me?

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