Wednesday, April 23, 2014

How Do You...Keep the House Running While You Are Sick?

How do you keep things going (housework, kids, etc.) when Mom is sick?
  I have three kids and haven't figured it out yet.

submitted by Laura

Right after this question was submitted, I came down with a virus-- sore throat, fever, headache, stuffy nose.  How different it was than when I had babies and toddlers!  My kids are old enough now to step up and do many of the things that I usually do.  They can handle easy meals, load the dishwasher, switch over the laundry, and keep the house picked up. 

It was not long ago that when I got sick, the house seemingly shut down.  Sick days were a cause for me to panic because there was no one at home to take over my work load while Brian was at work.  If I didn't do it, no one did. The best I could do was to keep the kids close to me, gathering them around me on the couch or asking them to stay in the room where I could manage everyone without getting up. There was no easy solution and there is probably no easy solution for you either.  There isn't a magical way to figure out how to run the house when you are down and out. 

The thing I learned over the years, though, is that sick days are a very short season of life.  (Even my months-long bouts of morning sickness were short in the grand scheme of things.)  It is okay to relax the standards for awhile.  

It is okay if you make sandwiches for dinner or ask your husband to bring home take-out. It is okay if everyone stays in their pajamas all day.  It is okay if the kids watch more TV than you usually allow.  It is okay if the crumbs don't get swept.  During periods of sickness, I used to stress about what wasn't getting done and put undue pressure on myself.  It wasn't until I felt well again that I would realize that relaxing the standards for a day or two would have been better for everyone.

My How Do You...? series is back for a limited time.  If you have an idea for a topic, leave a comment here or on my Facebook page.  In the meantime, you can browse the archived index of past topics.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the encouragement! My oldest is almost 5 and I also have a 3-year-old and a 1-year-old so we're not quite at the point yet where they can help out, but it's always good to hear that this is just for a short time and we *will* make it through.


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