Thursday, January 6, 2011

Things I didn't know about before I became a parent (part 1)

* Kids are almost perpetually sick in the beginning. We've had a week or two of wellness this winter...and now it's over. We spent the first two years of our son's life practically living at the doctor's office, and now it's round two with our baby girl.

* It doesn't matter how much you try (breastfeeding, healthy organic foods, vitamins, handwashing, keeping kids at home and sheltered away from sick kids), they will still get sick. All it takes is dropping them off at preschool, and inevitably, some other kid will come over and sneeze right in your precious child's face within seconds of drop-off.

* Complaining about the number of sick kids at preschool and parents who don't take the responsibility for keeping them at home when they're feverish, vomiting, or gushing mucus out of every pore will only get you labeled as the "crazy difficult" parent.

*Sickness in our house means no sleep for anyone (I haven't slept through the night regularly in over 5 years). It progresses to breathing treatments, steroids, multiple rounds of antibiotics, and visits with lots of specialists (who really aren't so special after all). We get a week's reprieve, and then the routine begins again upon return to preschool.

*Parents don't get sick days (see previous post). Although my work awards me paid time off, I didn't realize it would mostly go to tending to sick children.

*But most importantly, I didn't realize that all these illnesses would make me realize how blessed we are not to be dealing with something more serious. As frustrating and draining as the repeated colds, infections, and breathing episodes are, we are haunted by the knowledge that it could be so much worse. We look forward to healing, and continue to pray for friends who are struggling with more serious concerns.

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