When The Bug Strikes

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Having a sick child? Sucks.

Having two sick children? Sucks x2.

Having three sick children? Sucks x a million.

Yes, gang, it’s been a rough few weeks in our household. 

When one goes down, they all go down. And in my family, they go dooooooooowwwwwwn. Like, a long way. All. The. Way.

We don’t just get a little sick here. So many moms have told me over the years, “Oh, it’s probably just a 24-hour bug. They’ll be over it in no time.” I always cross my fingers and hope and pray for this to finally be true, but it never is.

We have never, ever, EVER had a 24-hour bug. We get multi-week long bugs that start as one thing, and transform many times over, until we we wind up with several new and more violent viruses than we started with.

Ugh.

When the twins first arrived, and until not that many months ago, when one kid would get sick (and usually it was our oldest), I would begin project “Keep Everyone Else Healthy”. This meant I would separate said sick kid (poor, poor kid) in another room, and close off all means in and out of that room (to keep the healthy ones out, and the sick child IN). I, the MotherShip, would attend to all the kiddos at once. Like a chicken with it’s head cut off, I would run this way and that — bringing meds, food, drink, blankets – you name it – to the sick child. Then, running back into the “healthy” room, I would immediately wash hands, throw on my germ-free robe, and attend to the non-sick two. 

And in my “spare time”, I would simply sanitize every surface and toy multiple times over, wash sheets, stuffed animals, pacifiers, etc. several times a day and once again before bed.

Whew. I’m exhausted just typing all of this.

And you know what would STILL happen anytime someone in our household would fall ill? Despite all my best efforts, the germs would do what they do best: spread.

After several go-arounds with this since the twins were born in March, 2016, during this most recent stint, I (mostly) gave up the fight.

This isn’t to say it’s easy for me. As soon as I realized my oldest had fallen prey to croup and strep, the feeling of dread settled deep in my bones. I immediately wanted to commence Projects Separate and Sanitize; and while to some degree I did, I also just gave in. In definite not-like-me-at-all fashion, I repeated the mantra, “What will be will be; if they are all going to get sick, they are all going to get sick. I can handle it.”

What happened this time really was awful – they didn’t get sick together, but rather, one after the other. So we have had, in reality, three straight weeks of fever, croup, strep, ear infections, and just plain ol’ virus misery.

But, I’m now the first to admit (finally) that it’s just better if everyone gets sick at once. Is it treacherous? Yep. But it’s also much better to get it all over with in one fall swoop (as opposed to stretching it out over the course of weeks or months – like the entirety of last winter…).

So next time The Bug hits, I will welcome it in, make lots of chicken noodle soup, and settle in for the long haul. And when health hits again, I will scrub the house (and every single crevice) clean, and rejoice the day.

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