In reflecting back on the first time Lola had a cold (which meant I also had one) I’m pretty sure we both cried. It had been years since I had been home sick with a baby. My daughter was much older now and I had developed a routine for our sick days which included sitting side by side in bed watching movies with a box of tissues wedged between us. But things are quite different now with a baby at home. There’s little lounging and just because you are at home doesn’t mean you’re resting. I know this because as I type this my little one lays beside me battling a cold that I most likely gave her. My nose is now raw from blowing and I’ve consumed more orange juice and tea than I’d like to.
On the bright side I’ve also had my 8 month old fall asleep tightly holding my arm, bury her face in my shoulders, and smile at me with a scrunched face. All of this, resulting in a few moments where I have forgotten how terrible I feel because the joy that comes with being a mommy can override the blues that comes with carrying a box of tissues around the house. Not to mention it’s pretty funny seeing how playing with a box of tissues is much more fun for than playing with real toys.
What I thought was an allergy has turned out to be a cold. And as a result, I started making some adjustments to my days to help me survive while at the same time hoping to be on the mend soon. Here are 5 things I’m doing to get through being at home sick with a baby.
5 Things I'm Doing to Get Through Being Sick With a Baby
Click through for 5 things I’m doing to get through being sick while still having to take care of my baby.
Sleep when the baby sleeps.
I was terrible at this when my daughter came home from the hospital as a newborn, but being sick drains you and all you want is to sleep. If you are at home with your baby it is likely you use their nap time to get things done. Since I have been under the weather I have been making more of an effort to sleep when my baby sleeps.
Ask for help.
As much as I would love to say I have it all under control I don’t. And admitting that I need help doesn’t make me less of a mom. Rather than assume it’s obvious how horrible I feel I decided to ask for some help. Today what that means is asking my husband to take care of dinner while I finish up a few things I put off to nap. Tomorrow it might mean asking him to feed Lola her breakfast so I can stay in bed a little longer.
Eat and drink plenty of fluids.
This one is tough because I don’t feel like doing either, but I have been trying to give myself a variety of nutritious options. I’ve been snacking on tangerines for vitamin C and chicken minestrone soup has been easy on my tummy while providing me with vegetables and protein. Not only is this important because I’m still breastfeeding but also because I need energy to take care of my rather energetic 8 month old.
I’m giving myself a break.
I might not be getting things done as quickly or efficiently as I normally do but I now realize that’s ok. I will continue to do what I can when I can in hopes that I will be back to myself sooner than later.
I’m constantly looking for the magic.
It is easy for me to get caught up in how miserable I feel but if I take a minute and look around there are some magical things happening all around me. Lola is giggling and learning just how fun pulling tissues out of a box can be (don’t worry she didn’t eat any!) and her smile is still just as bright despite a runny nose. These are the things that remind me that despite feeling yucky this is just a small moment in time. I’ll be back to myself soon. And of course, I’ll be ready for new adventures and days spent without a box of tissues within direct reach.
With a little TLC and some time I know my cold will run its course and I’ll be back to showering my girls with kisses in no time. What do you do to get through being sick while still taking care of your baby? When my oldest was a toddler I would put on one of her favorite videos and lay beside her on the couch. I’d love to hear your tips on navigating being sick while taking care of a baby.