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A Letter to the Mom With a Sick One

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Are you a mom with a sick one?

With eight kids, I am this mom a lot. In fact, I feel like I am this mom all the time.

As a mom for more than 15 years, however, I see that all moms are not the same when it comes to being the mom of a sick one.

I wish we could all get on the same page, however, and this is why I’m wiring a letter to moms everywhere.

Schools, daycares, churches, plays centers, and things of all kinds have rules when it comes to sickness. And, for the love of all things holy I wish we as moms could all just agree to follow them.

If you are a mom with a sick one, let’s talk.


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My kids? They’ve got horrible immune systems.

We have done everything we could over the years to try to work with this. We’ve done vitamins and supplements, herbal remedies, elderberry syrup, and  essential oils and cleaners. We even wear masks at times. We have done just about anything you could ever imagine. At times we just stay home when we need a week to hopefully stay well.

Yet, somehow these things all fall short since we seem to spend our lives eternally sick.

Not to mention, my kids also don’t get sick like “normal” kids.

When my kids get colds, I have some who always end up with croup. Their bronchial passages are just a bit smaller than most.

When my kids get the stomach bugs, I have at least three who always end up suffering from severe dehydration after vomiting more than 50 times to the point of being lethargic. They end up with IVs and all of that. Then, 18 days after they started they are finally better.

If you are one of the lucky ones with kids who are primarily healthy and who are easily able to overcome their illnesses within a reasonable amount of time, you are so fortunate.

But, we are not all you.

Some of us are moms whose kids get sick, really sick. Other moms have kids who can’t seem to fight off anything. If you’re really lucky, like me, you are a mom who struggles with both of these things.

There are also those moms whose kids are facing serious illnesses and disease that could face severe, even deadly consequences when their kids get sick.

Maybe it’s because I’ve been up for the past 18 nights straight with sick kids, but I am pleading with moms with sick kids everywhere to leave your kids home when they are sick. When you don’t, you are exposing everyone everywhere to the germs your kids are currently carrying, and that means very bad things for moms like me.

I know how important it is for you to get to work and for your kids to get to that birthday party they’ve been looking forward to. I even know how important it is to go to church as a family because these things are all really important to me, too.

But in reality, these needs don’t trump the needs of me and my kids and the needs of all the moms and all the kids around you.

The truth is, school will go on without your kids there. Your work will survive if you have to miss a day or two. There will always be plenty more birthday parties and activities for your kids to be a part of.

With this in mind, keeping kids at home when they are sick really isn’t all that catastrophic. The world does go on, and it will still be there waiting for you when everyone is well.

It’s really just all about perspective. I think it would really serve us all well as moms to remember that there are always others with lives around us. Our kids come into contact with each other. When they swap germs not all kids can fight off those germs all the time…or ever.

To the mom with a sick one – please leave your sick one at home until they are well.

We moms of unhealthy kids thank you!

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  1. I probably needed to hear this because I do take my daughter out a bit when she is sick as long as it’s not super serious. But it’s also a little bit difficult to hear because I have one child who is 2.5 years old and possibly the most extroverted being I’ve met. So if she’s home for multiple days she’s bored to tears and tempted to cause trouble it’s either that or hours and hours of curious George. And even that fails at some point. So I completely hear you but on the other side of things I think my child and I would both go mental without getting out a bit even when she’s fighting a cold. We can take precautions and wipe down a shopping cart after using it etc. Would you agree there is some balance to be found for specific situations like mine? I’m not sure, I just don’t think I could ever replace seeing the action of the world for my little munchkin no matter how many cool indoor activities I planned (we have no yard).

    1. I think colds are certainly one thing. I think schools and daycares generally have good advice. Stay home if there is a fever vomiting, or diarrhea within 24 hours. Colds that hang on forever are a completely different story. Symptoms can hang on forever, but the contagious period could be a thing of the past in that case. Sadly, there are so many who don’t pay any attention at all to the 24 hour rule. I think those policies are in place for a reason and should be followed. Hearing things like “Johnny was throwing up all night last night but I’m so glad he’s feeling better now,” while Johnny is licking the shopping cart is the sort of thing I’m really referring to here. Doesn’t sound like that’s what you’re talking about though. Thanks so much for taking the time to read and leaving a different point of view!

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