I remember a time not so long ago when I had a nasty throat/ear infection, it was about a year before I got pregnant with Izzy and I called in sick to work and spent the entire day in bed.. Then the following day I still felt awful so I spent another day in bed. Nothing too strange about that really. I was ill so I helped myself to recuperate by resting.
As a parent you can’t phone in sick or take time off from parental duties. You can get help from your partner and family but you are still a mum or a dad. I bet not many of you have spent an entire day in bed since having children. This week was the first time when I have really felt ill to the point where I needed that but I’m breastfeeding and as such my daughters needs come first. I didn’t quite anticipate how hard that would be when I was unwell. The hardest time being when I had to go in for a lumbar puncture and leave Chloe on the ward with my mum. I fed her like crazy before I went in and just hoped she would be ok while I was gone (she feeds on demand) the lumbar puncture took 4 attempts meaning it was a while before I got back to the ward to my thankfully sleeping baby. I then had to lie flat on my back for at least several hours without getting up for bathroom breaks or to feed. My daughter who would normally have fed at least twice during that period instead chose to take an extra long nap. Isn’t it strange how that works? It was as if she knew. That night I was dreading being alone in my hospital room with Chloe as I had an extremely sore back and head but again she was wonderful, she fed a lot but settled quickly after each feed and every Doctor and nurse that I saw commented on my contented baby. Since coming home I’ve had lots of support luckily as my headache only eases right now while I’m lying down.
I should be feeling better in a week or so but I do wonder how parents with long term health issues cope as its so very hard to be a parent when unwell. I salute all of you.
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