Monday, January 28, 2008

Sick day

It’s often said that busy moms don’t have time to be sick. I have said it myself. I’ve got to keep my sick days for when my kids are sick, I can’t use them when I’m actually sick.

In just the last month I’ve dragged myself into work with everything from laryngitis to a stomach virus, all of which I am sure my co-workers have loved being exposed to.

Since the beginning of the year I haven’t been completely healthy. I blame this on the lack of sleep making my body unable to heal itself because it’s too busy keeping me awake.

New moms tend not to sleep well for weeks, even months after the baby is born. Couple that with trying to heal from the trauma of child birth and playing the role of supermom, and many moms find that complete exhaustion sets in pretty quickly.

I am no different.

I haven’t sat still in months. I was carrying my daughter around the hospital within 24 hours of giving birth to my son. When we came home from the hospital, there was no time for me to sit in bed and recover; I had to hit the ground running, regardless of the doctor’s advice. My daughter was 14 months old and she needed her mommy and daddy and it didn’t matter to her that we just brought home a new baby.

So, here I sit, after nearly four months of running in high gear I have been forced to take a day off. After neglecting my own health for so long, my body has turned against me and a little cold has completely knocked me out. My husband brought the kids to daycare and left me at home with orders to get some sleep.

It’s going to be tough. Even as I sit here writing this, I’m thinking that I could still go into work. But that will not help me and I’ll probably just get sick again next week.

With my focus completely on my kids, it’s so easy to forget to take care of myself, and when I do, I feel guilty about it. The thing is that it’s so important that we, as parents, stay healthy so that we can be great parents and reliable employees.

So, today I will curl up with a cup of tea, take a very long nap and, hopefully, revitalize so I can make it the rest of the year without using another sick day for myself.