Friday, March 1, 2013

Parenting Through Cold & Flu

Well, seems we’ve all been hit. All parents. All kids. Everywhere. Everyone seems to have been sick this winter and I’m so glad we’re finally getting some sunshine and health! January and into February everyone in our house was sick. It. Was. Miserable.

First up, I got sick. Just a common cold, but taking care of a kiddo while sick is a whole new ball game. Sharing is caring, so then Lil' O got sick. Sigh. Thankfully Husby stayed well long enough for me to get mostly better. We tag teamed taking care of Lil' O based on who felt more healthy throughout the month. Lil' O got mostly better, then Husby got sick with a different bug. Both fully recovered, and then I fell sick again. It seems I perhaps didn’t give myself enough time to get well the first time around, because it was the same cold, but more persistent the second time around. Well, life doesn’t go on hold and showers don’t throw themselves. Alas.

A new twist that I knew about intellectually, but wasn’t quite psychologically prepared for is that regardless of who is sick – me or Lil' O – I had to take off of work. It’s evidently frowned upon to bring kids to daycare if you so much as suspect they have a cold, a sniffle, a cough. Hard part is how does one determine if babe is teething and that’s why there’s drool, coughing and fussiness, or that they’re really sick? More than once I’ve wished there was a button or clear way to sort between the two. Or, as we call it in our house, WTF for “Why The Fuss?” Having a funny name helps us defuse the situation and laugh a little despite our frustration.

Lil' O had a fever one night and it was crystal clear that he wasn’t well. He wanted to cuddle. I loved that part, but since he’s more of a go go go type, we knew something was up before confirmation by thermometer. (See picture below.)
Other than that, though, each morning was a kind of guessing game. Is he was well enough to go to daycare? Should we stay home because he's actually that sick? Or, do we need to stay away from the other kiddos at daycare as a precautionary measure? Not sure I made all the right calls, but we got through it and now Lil' O is healthy and fussy for all new reasons. Yay? More on that soon.

All this to say that parenting through cold and flu season is hard, I’m still catching up from the one-two-three-four punch, and I have new appreciation for parents everywhere, especially where there are actual seasons and sicknesses seem to last longer.

Any tips from more seasoned parents, grandparents and caregivers out there for getting through the dreaded cold and flu season? All I’ve heard so far is to pick up Hyland's Tiny Cold Tablets whenever and wherever I can find them and hoard them until needed. (Evidently they sell out quickly this time of year.) I was skeptical of a homeopathic solution, but with limited options we gave them a try. I will note they worked pretty well and were certainly better than nothing. All other tips welcome! Thanks!

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