Guest Blogger Beck from Frog and Toad Are Still Friends reflects on her family’s recent battle with various ailments and the wisdom that comes only after years of parenting.
That was pretty gruelling—my whole household just went through what I suspect were several different illnesses all compressed into a two-week span and now we all look like we need a week in one of those country camps for inner-city kids. Of course, where we live is quite rural so maybe we need a week someplace really urban to build our strength back up.
People keep suggesting other things we need: murky health food store concoctions of dubious merit, extreme vitamin regimes, hours spent outside absorbing Fresh Air, and my favorite, moving someplace warm during the winter. I actually think the only PRACTICAL suggestion for keeping myself healthy during the winter is to invent a time machine, go back in time and NOT HAVE KIDS, because kids are germy little monsters. But sadly, I skipped most of my science classes in high school and also I kind of like the little germballs and so sickness is my lot.
I remember—and how I remember this, I do not know—the very first illness the very first of my children ever had. The Girl caught a cold as a baby and was snuffly and feverish and miserable and I felt an almost keening sense of despair about it. Now, of course, she woke up snuffly and feverish and grouchy as a bear this morning, and I just mutely point her to the couch and start making hot tea because the difference between now and then is that I’m no longer a panicked girl in her 20s with no idea what to do. Now I’ve been a mother for over a decade and carry a mother’s hard-earned knowledge with me everywhere I go, even into Arizona’s dry hot air, even into the unseen, unknowable future.