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Sick mama

Dear sick mama,

I see you. I know you don’t have time to be sick. You feel like the world is against you because you literally don’t even have energy to pee and when you’re sick, nothing is fair and everything sucks. I see you trying not to break in half, trying to pretend you don’t have body aches and a pounding headache. Trying to pretend to be fine at work because you’re afraid to take sick days since you need to save them for your kids. You don’t get time. You don’t get sick days. You actually don’t have time to be sick. Sorry mama.

You just want to lay in bed and not have to answer to anyone. You don’t want to rush or make breakfast or drown in the chaos of today. You don’t want to rush your kids to school, act happy, or even exert energy without crying. You want to sleep and not feel like you got hit by a truck. You want someone to bring you soup and play with your hair and give you medicine. But nope. You just.keep.going.

The world doesn’t turn off for you, mama. You’re the one who keeps the world around you going. It’s okay to rest- maybe not the kind of rest you pray for, but the kind where you ask for help and take a sick day and not feel guilty. It’s okay to not be on your game all the time. And I write this not only to remind you, but to remind myself…I work 4 jobs- mama, teacher, Zumba instructor and I teach English to kids in China at all weird hours- in my basement next to a heater with a blanket. That can be hard when you’re sick trying to smile like Blippi on crack pretending not to cough or be sick so the Chinese parents think you’re perfect. It’s allllll fine. Really. Also go to work and pretend to be this happy teacher who gives gives gives and has to hold the other kids up. Or not pretend and almost fall asleep at your desk while everyone whispers- she should have stayed home.

But damn, for 1 day let me just rest. I want to shut the world around me OFF. A few days a year (I know it sounds like it should be more), l I run out of gas completely…it usually is when I’m sick and I can’t rest or turn off for the day. I am so burnt out that I just want to cry and then I get sick and what do you know- it’s a ripple effect. I get it, I’m a mom now. When you sign into motherhood, you sacrifice a lot. It’s worth it. God it’s so worth it, but it still doesn’t take away the moodiness and crankiness and the want to sleep for a few days and eat whatever I want without it hurting my stomach.

How do we refuel? How do we rest? Simple answer. We don’t. We just keep pushing. And I’ll tell you this- my kids don’t know the difference between sick mama and healthy mama. They love me the same. They want me the same. They need me the same. Jules is starting to realize more and more that I don’t feel good, but it doesn’t change anything. Sometimes that’s good and sometimes not so much haha. Sometimes it’s good they can’t tell the difference and sometimes it’s not.

Okay mamas, it’s 11pm on a Monday night and I’m sicker than a dog. Kids are tucked in and sleeping, lunches are packed, China is taught, medicine is taken, and I’m almost asleep. Take care of yourself mamas and remember to appreciate all those non sick I have energy and I feel happy moments. Love to all xoxox

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