Grace and Tears: What I Appreciate When Life Throws Curveballs

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What. A. Week.

I’ve been MIA the past week, and for good reason. My household has been turned upside down, inside out, and back again.

Thankfully, it’s Monday and I’m happy again! The last time I was here was last Monday when I shared some simple tips for making Mondays kick ass, and that post came at the best time. I spent a lot of time implementing my Monday tips every single day last week to get through the week without ending up on the evening news too many tears.

Today, it’s Monday; and I’m happy. To quickly recap why I enjoy Mondays so much:

  • Kids in school (always nice for work-from-home parents)
  • Routine back on schedule
  • I’m actually rested after two days of sleeping in and having fun
  • No one is grumpy on Monday mornings because we are rested

This week is even happier than last, because our twins were home from school 3.5 days last week SICK. Not just a little fever and some coughing type of sick. I mean, vomiting on every available surface and really yuck diaper sick.

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It breaks my heart in general, but it breaks my heart even more because those sweet babies turn three this week. They spent the week leading up to their birthday – six days – vomiting and using the bathroom all day long. They couldn’t keep anything down, they couldn’t rest, they were lethargic, and they had no other symptoms of anything….so no antibiotics. A virus, says the doctor; wait it out and keep an eye on dehydration issues.

Sigh.

It all began Tuesday with a call from school. Carter had two bad diapers, and that meant he had to go home and could not come back for 24 hours. Wednesday he was still sick, and Charlotte began to develop symptoms. By Thursday, everyone was vomiting regularly and continued to do so until Sunday morning.

Our older girls had half days at school Thursday and Friday because this week is spring break. We had a weekend trip to spend the weekend at our favorite hotel in Orlando to do a little Disney weekend with the kids to celebrate the twins turning three this week and our middle daughter turning six this week.

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Cancelled.

To make matters worse, my SUV (which I’m had only 7 months) blew a tire on Friday, my oil life dropped to 0%, and one of my high-tech LED headlights went out. I had an oil change appointment, but do you think that the dealership had my tires in stock so I could get new ones at the same time? No. Do you think they had a headlight in stock? No – and would you believe it’s a $300 BULB? I mean, honestly. Last time I checked, GMC wasn’t making Denalis with chandeliers coming out the front (my husband Google’d the bulb while he was at the dealer and ordered the same one brand new for only $150, so HA to them for trying to charge me double). Honestly.

So….it was a long week; and that’s the “why” behind my absence for a week and leads me into this week’s Monday post…all the things I’m grateful for when life is as difficult as it was last week.

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My Husband

It’s no secret my husband is a much better mom than I’ll ever be. He has a natural love of parenting, and he’s so good at it. He’s 100% involved in their lives, in caring for them, and in being an equal partner in this marriage. From giving the babies their nightly bath to packing all four school lunches to doing laundry and cleaning up any messes – he’s amazing.

Last week was rough for him, and he still went above and beyond to make it easier on me. He works from home as a master of all things technical (don’t ask me his fancy title because it’s long and I always get it wrong) and last week he had a training course. He was on the phone listening to the instructor from 9:30 am until 6 pm without anything more than two 10-minute breaks and a half hour lunch (which he spent on the phone with his customers who couldn’t live the entire week without him). He was beyond exhausted, and he held babies in his lap while he listened, scheduled a night out Friday with NO KIDS, and did any and everything he could when he had a second to help me. I don’t know what I did to deserve him, but I’m eternally thankful.

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Grandparents

Thursday nights are cheer practice for one daughter, and tumbling for both. I leave the house at 2:30 and don’t get home until 8. It’s a long day when everyone is healthy, but longer when it means I’m trying to work, the babies are just crying and throwing up and sad, and the girls need to go to practice. Every practice night, the babies stay home with my husband and they play outside, he makes dinner, they take their baths, and they go to bed. Last week, he had his training until 6 and couldn’t get off the phone to do his usual Thursday night daddy-duties, so my mom came over to stay with the twins so he could acknowledge his schedule and me mine.

On Saturday, we cancelled our getaway and crushed the hearts of our 8 and 5-year-olds. My wonderful mother-in-law was so sweet to stay with the babies all afternoon and until midnight so we could take the girls to Disney for a few hours, and then to dinner. They were SO excited about it, and it was exactly what we needed (to get out of the house!).

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Amazing Friends

Sunday brought an afternoon BBQ with the besties, and it was much-needed. The twins were finally feeling better, and they were dying to get out of the house. I’m not a fan of Sunday plans, but it was exactly what we all needed. The kids swam, the food was good, everyone was happy, and we all got a chance to relax and unwind and rest. Much needed.

Coffee

Because exhaustion is a real thing when you have sick babies. It never ceases to amaze me how our kids have all slept through the night since they were only a few weeks old, yet I’m always so tired. Even when they’re sick, they sleep all night. Yet here I am exhausted. I guess that’s what happens when you don’t sit down anywhere but your desk to work during the day and the rest of it is up fetching, cleaning, wiping, making, chasing, tickling, playing, preparing. Anyway, coffee and me are like the best of friends when times are tough.

Wine

Need I say more? Sick babies cleaned up, medicated, and in bed – mommy and daddy pour the wine, drink the wine, and appreciate the wine.

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Prayer

The power of prayer is real in our house. I find that my first reaction when things are not going my way or getting a little tough or are amazing is to turn to God and either thank him for our blessings or ask him to grant me some patience so I can get through this. Last week was a lot of “Please, please, please, please bring these babies some relief,” and while it took a week, it’s always easier to feel confident and comfortable in illness when you have Him on your side. It’s called Grace, and I find myself asking for it all the time.

Lysol Disinfectant Wipes

Y’all. Not including closet doors, we have 19 doors in our home that are touched every single day. We have three bathrooms, four bar stools, and loads of furniture and toys the kids like to touch on a daily basis over and over again.

What does this mean? Oh, germs. This means I’m spending hours upon hours of my week the past week cleaning door handles, toilet flushing handles, sinks handles, and you don’t even want to know how many cabinet knobs and pulls….thank goodness for these darling wipes. They make life a lot easier, and they’ll hopefully prevent us all from catching this ugly virus.

 

Tears

I don’t love to cry (makeup) but I do feel good after I have a good breakdown. It’s so nice to sit down, cry it out, and get over it. It’s so therapeutic. I think I cried at least once a day last week. Every time I turned around a baby was throwing up. It was constant cleaning and baths, holding babies, lethargic babies who want nothing more than to sit in my lap, staying up late to meet deadlines and work on articles clients pay me to write by a specific date, and just trying not to breakdown. Those crying sessions were much needed.

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Life Problems

At the end of the day, I’m grateful most for the fact that my big life problems are things like a virus and an interrupted schedule. I don’t belittle my own problems or allow myself to fell guilty for feeling they’re a big deal when I know so many other people suffer really significant health issues, life problems, and devastation. However, I know it could be so much worse, and that makes me appreciate all I have. Having a husband who views teamwork and being present in our lives and the lives of our kids his number one priority, having family who love our kids so much, and having the ability to get out and escape when life is rough…those things are invaluable things many people don’t have. I’m forever grateful for our blessings.

In short, it was a long week. Sometimes you just have to put the world to the side and let it go. I learn to let go and stop trying to control situations, and I learn how to get through difficult times. I feel I learn a lot, grow a bit, and even though I don’t love the circumstances, I do love the extra snuggles and cuddles I get from my sweet babies.

What do you do when life is overwhelming and everything all seems to happen at once? What’s your go-to, your saving grace, and your favorite way to unwind?

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