Juggling – What to do when your balls drop…

So this week has not been great on the health front. I am posting this on a Thursday so its safe to say I am assuming it will not improve sufficiently over the next few days for that to become an overstatement.

It has however been a great week…..and here’s why….

I had a lot of things going on – work, home, family, friends – the usual stuff – nothing that everyone else doesn’t have to cope with…then the children got ill, then I got ill and then everything stopped.

The first thing that went was the work. I couldn’t post orders, reply to e-mails or do any of the long and meandering To Do list that I have proudly spent the last six years building up and have no intention completing or what-on-earth-would-I-do-with-myself? (The important thing is not to complete tasks efficiently, but to keep adding them in at the bottom so you appear useful to yourself).

I missed two social engagements and immediately panicked that I would never be asked anywhere again – its worse than calling in sick at work – is she really ill or just bored of our company…? I never liked her anyway….who else can we ask…?

I then missed two 40th birthdays – I forgot to check to send cards. This year almost everyone in England is turning 40 and now I have forgotten to tell two of them that they are old and congratulations for it. I think they may be secretly happier for receiving one less smug card but who knows. I shall probably be excommunicated.

Rapidly on the heels of that went the cooking, shopping and general going out-ness. The pyjamas stayed on, the drugs came out and a surprising number of blankets appeared in the front room for us to crawl under. Luckily it was only colds – so we were able to self medicate and after six years in the game (*in*), I did not panic and take everyone to casualty as soon as the first temperature crept above 41degrees. Firstly because I know that I am rubbish at taking temperatures and the last time I reported myself to the doctor with a suspected temperature of 43 it turned out to be 38 and I immediately felt well on hearing the numbers (sometimes I wonder if he was lying, but hey ho – it worked!).

The other reason we do not fly off to put ourselves in the hands of the medical professionals is that the last two times we have done so, I swear they have been responsible for making my children more ill. In the nicest possible way…..

The triage system in play in our local hospital meant that Seren was woken up to be examined by no less than five different people from the admissions nurse to the head of paediatrics on our last four hour trip to casualty. Now I didn’t go to medical school but I know that being woken up five times in four hours (in the middle of the night) and being asked the same question by strangers while they shine lights in your eyes and try to get you to wee in a cup is NOT going to make things better in the world of a sickly three year old. So in the end I thanked them kindly for their  input and took her home none the wiser. She slept for 13hours and was right as rain. The second time we braved casualty she had opened up her face falling over and as long as I live I will never forget the Irish doctor sticking her little finger IN TO the hole in her forehead and saying “Sure – she seems pretty hardy!”…She is extremely hardy and now she has a hole in her forehead where your finger has been. No stitches or pain relief and a year on, you can still see where the finger went in and she flinches if you touch it…..I’m going to stick with voodoo and positive thinking next time anything serious happens.

Once we got comfy under the blankies everything slowed down. No-one was properly hungry so we had toast and honey and lots of it. We watched back to back films and in between the cold sweats, hacking coughs and large volumes of phlegm, it was properly lovely. It must be the first normal week-day in 6 years that I haven’t worried about getting to the post office  before 5.30pm to get the orders shipped because I was being cuddled simultaneously by two hot little miseries….

And then it occurred to me – we should get ill more often! Not really. That would be stupid.

But I loved these days with my children, we had cuddles, we relaxed and for all the wrong reasons, I loved that they needed me.

If I’m honest, apart from the need to earn money, and to keep busy, I spend alot of this time building up my business and making myself as valuable as I can to other people so that it won’t hurt so much when the children decide they can manage on their own. I know they are only 6 and 3 and nothing stops me from being there for them now – that was the whole point of giving up the big job and doing things from home and to suit family life BUT they are only on loan to me and one day, someone else will be bringing them honey on toast (if they are lucky and can afford a butler), and I might not even get to hear they have been ill.

One sad day, I’ll get a cold and find myself under the blankie all alone and weeping into my tissues whilst watching “Mr Poppers Penguins”  (it’s truly awful – I shall be crying for so many reasons)….Its not often you find yourself hoping a cold will hang around for just a little bit longer…