Then there are the days when I wear a hat of one color. Actually it’s been two days now. I’ve been wearing the “Nurse-mom” hat. Yes, when there is a sick child in the house, my other hats are taken off. That is not to say I’m not cleaning, doing laundry, preparing food, etc., it just means all those are squeezed in while at home with a sick child. (As proof of this, everything written after these first few sentences is now being finished four days later.)
So let’s begin again…As I was saying, a sick child can result in spending time on the couch, just being there and nursing her back to health. Luckily, neither of our daughters, in their fairly short lives, has gotten ill very often or for very long, but when they do, it certainly requires me to focus mainly on them. This time, the bug hit our eldest daughter who, when sick, adamantly states, “Want you, Mom.” This makes it difficult for me to do much more than sit on the couch. Amy spent most of those two days sleeping, but still, she would awaken and say, “Want you, Mom” right away. I’ve learned that saying, “Just a moment,” to her wouldn’t bode well for either of us. So, I watched a little morning tv, finish reading The Help and started Perfect Escape.
Did I really only wear “Nurse-mom” hat for those two days? For those that know me well, I will admit I did try to wear my teacher hat a few times, but in general that didn’t work too well either. Lesson planning is similar to writing for me; I prefer to do it later in the day without any interruptions. Amy’s “Want you, Mom” interruptions negatively affected my ability to complete the writing of this blog post or my lesson planning. As a result, I read, quietly cleaned, prepared dinner, checked Facebook (frequently), and played Words with Friends.
Did it frustrate me to wear a hat of one color? Sure, at first. But then I remembered a conversation between a colleague and I. My daughter with special needs was about seven years old at the time, and I’d learned to focus on the positives as much as possible. I mentioned how, when I was overly busy attending meetings, prepping for my classes, volunteering for various activities, and all, that Amy would have a “meltdown.” Those “meltdowns” would require me to stop and focus solely on her for 20-30 minutes. I had also come to realize the “meltdowns” made me slow down. When I shared that story with my colleague, she said, “Your daughter is your barometer in life.” I’ve always remembered that comment, and when I start to feel guilty because I’m sitting on the couch watching a sick child, I relax. Wearing a hat of one color is ok.