I promise I’m not going to keep talking about how we’re all sick, even though it’s really hard not to talk about it because that’s the only thing happening in our lives since the fall of 2019, but sometimes a life lesson backslaps you in the face and I just gotta talk about it.
Lucy and I have been the chosen sick buddies this week on the endless merry go round of plagues in our home. Honestly, I’m sort of getting used to it – but if I think about it long enough I can just get so pissed. I have felt sad and frustrated by my fatigue and all that frickin coughing while watching the sun come up. I can’t believe I have caught literally every single thing imaginable. And I want to vent my bad mood, I wanna brood. I wanna stomp around, slam cupboards and aggressively blow my nose. When I pee and use up the last of the toilet paper – I just leave. I don’t give a damn anymore.
But then, I see how my girls are handling it – and it’s the total opposite of me. Kids are so freaky resilient, aren’t they? They FIGHT to be happy. Sure they can throw a mega tantrum that’ll bring us to our knees, but that isn’t their default. Their default is happiness, giggling, play and imagination.
Last night when Lucy and I huddled up together, her fever had lifted just a bit, so she slithered out of my arms and army crawled her sweaty little butt over to her Barbie’s playhouse. She had just enough energy to call Ken and then made her way back to my arms. She smiled all the way and it amplified the scowl I had been wearing for days.
Sometimes I feel entitled to a nasty mood. I mean, I lean into that sucker. I would have rang up Ken with complete hostility and contempt.
And here’s a girl right in front of me who keeps fighting for every happy moment. She just never gives up trying to have fun. Isn’t that profound? I sat in that realization, swam in it’s depths …
… then she coughed in my face, followed by a huge sneeze that blew snot down her face while she screamed, “MOMMY, CATCH MY BOOGERS! HURRY! PLEASE!”
Anyway, after catching her boogers, I thought I might try a little harder to fight for happiness, too. Rather than leaning into grumpiness and self pity, maybe when I get just a teensy reprieve, I can take advantage of it, pick up the phone and call Ken with a little less hostility, and instead enjoy every second of it. It seems to work for our kids, anyway.
Now, if only I could find someone to catch my boogers.[PS: For those of you who are suffering or have suffered from chronic medical conditions, I have caught only a glimpse of what that must be like, and my hearts floods with compassion and admiration for the fight you put up every day. You inspire me – and I won’t take that for granted.]