Decisions, Decisions

Well, it’s been seven days now, and we’re all still sick. The kids no longer have fevers, but they have nasty, barking coughs and runny noses. And so do I, lucky as I am.

But…they are fairly chipper and definitely want to play. I am not so chipper, and need to work.

Therein lies my dilemma. Do I:

  1. Keep one or both of them home to “rest,” which in actuality means “go freakin’ stir-crazy,” because if they’re too sick to go to daycare, they’re too sick to play outside, and I get no work done and am exhausted by their antics? Or:
  2. Send them to daycare, where she will heap scorn on my parenting skills by foisting coughing children on her and the other kids, but where the kids will have more fun and probably better behavior, and I get some work done in a quiet house?

I sent them to daycare today. I’m sure it would be better for their physical bodies to stay home where it is a smidgen more “restful.” But it’s a whole lot more emotionally healthy for them to be out of my hair for six hours today. Sigh.

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13 Comments

Filed under Family, Health, Parenting

13 responses to “Decisions, Decisions

  1. I hear you there. My kids tend to get very whiny when they’re sick and it makes those days at home very long. Hope you’re all healthy soon.

  2. I’m getting sick now for the first time this winter. Your kids probably aren’t contagious now and are on the mend. I’d have sent them! Hope you all feel better soon. I fear it’s now our turn.

  3. Dawn: Thanks for your good wishes.

    Sarah: That’s the thing…they probably aren’t contagious, but they are still tired and definitely have a hard time napping with their coughs. Sometimes I think the daycare person assumes I can spend endless days home with them because I work from home. I hope you all stay healthy going into Easter time!

  4. Nana

    A word of advice, or maybe several words:

    It does not necessarily follow that just because the kids are “too sick” to go to daycare, they are “too sick” to go outside.
    If you feel even a smidgen of doubt about sending them to daycare, then keep them home.

    This is a perfect time to rent educational videos about animals, the planet, the stars, etc. I know what you’re thinking. This activity is too passive and requires no imaginative or creative interaction, but when children are not quite well it is good for them to keep their brilliant minds busy while their bodies continue to heal.

    Trust me, it will not turn them into video zombies if you use this technique only as a last resort.

  5. Nana: Thank you for your words of advice. Most of my hesitation was due to the daycare provider’s reaction; otherwise I think it’s more practical all around for them to get out of the house. It’s not like it’s a strenuous environment–they just play, eat, and sleep!

    As for videos, our children do not watch videos. We make rare exceptions, such as very short YouTube videos–like when SillyBilly wanted to see how a real trebuchet looks and works–or, at grandparents’ houses. : )

    It actually isn’t very restful to watch TV while you’re tired or sick: among other things, the quick cuts between images have been shown to stimulate a fight-or-flight adrenaline response in viewers!

    We use reading together in the way you mean, when they really just want to sit quietly with me.

  6. Eve

    I think I probably would have sent the children packing after a week at home. Or, sent myself packing and let them keep the house. ;o)

    Children seem to rebound so quickly when they’ve been sick and not continue to suffer and be as tired as we are, even though they still cough and their noses run etc.

    I chuckled when you said your son wanted to see how a real trebuchet worked. Last year some of my sons wanted to build a large trebuchet in our back pasture–large enough to fling a bale of hay across about an acre of land. My husband was very enthusiastic, too; but all I could imagine was the bale of hay killing the neighbor’s dog, or going off course and through a window.

    Mean ole’ mom strikes again!

  7. Eve: I’d like to see my son rebounding a little bit quicker from this one, but yes, they are generally amazing at healing. I try to judge by their behavior more than anything else: if they’re not playing, something’s wrong!

    Trebuchets are not the most precise things in the world, but generally you know what direction things will fly. I definitely saw a not-so-little gleam in my husband’s eye, dreaming of future woodworking projects once the boy gets bigger!

  8. Six hours sounds like heaven. And yes, they need it too… I’m sure this will make them feel MUCH better.

  9. I am often faced by this very dilemma and I have often chosen to send them to kindergarten, knowing they aren’t completely well.

    Hope this weekend brings rest, relaxation and wholesome wellness to all the Anthromama family.

  10. SusieJ: It is a little bit of heaven! I need it, to be a functional parent. A hard lesson to learn, but it’s true for me.

    Charl: (Please tell me if you dislike that nickname!) Thank you for the good wishes. Now Papa has the ick and is bundled up in bed, but the rest of us appear to be mending slowly.

  11. Bex

    Maaaaan, it’s just so hard isn’t it?
    I bow down to you for the no screen time thing though, you are AMAZING! Xxx

  12. I know, this is a tough one, like lots of aspects of being a parent, come to think of it. I constantly seem to be asking myself: “Am I doing the right thing?” When I’ve kept Kiko off nursery or his playgroups he seems to exhaust himself more through sheer frustration, and will not stop even for a minute (although when he does, that’s when I worry!) I do wonder at what age do they get the concept of “resting”?! (And TV – he simply will not sit down and watch it, whether it’s TV programmes or videos, so I’ve given up trying to distract him with it).

  13. Bex: It hasn’t been that hard, since we don’t watch TV ourselves. We’ve even made it kind of a pain to watch videos–we have to set up our TV tray, get the DVD player and TV out, plug them all in, etc. every time!

    Helen: That constant questioning is a sign of our times! Long ago we would have been surrounded by our wise elders and would have known more “instinctively” what to do. Now we have to figure it all out for ourselves! And I’d say be glad Kiko’s not interested in TV. I’m always a little scared how zombied-out my kids get the minute they see one.

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