Thursday, January 28, 2010

Head Colds, Tummy Aches and Sick Days

I have a head cold. Nicole has a head cold. My youngest, Natalie, has a tummy ache that may be constipation, may be a stomach flu, or may (I worry) be a concoction of her fertile imagination because she LOVES the taste of Children's Pepto. How sad it would be to be hooked on over the counter meds before the second grade...I had to leave work early yesterday when she called from school with news of her aching belly. The unspoken condemnation that I wasn't there in her hour of distress (okay, six hours) and she needed me, flooded me with guilt. It caused me to abandon my work and race out of the office, leaving only a briefest message on my supervisor's phone. I was babbling when I left it, something about stomach aches and Natalie and things I would carry with me to work on from home. I was out the door before the computer had even shut down and then felt horribly guilty about having to cut out from work early with unfinished tasks on my desk. So, I was guilty about not being there for my kid, guilty about not being there for work, ah, a guilt sandwich, how fun. I called my hubby, who is the only one in the house not sniffling and kicking back shots of Dayquil, and told him about Natalie's tummy ache. I was really asking him to relieve me of my guilt, to take on some of that feeling. Instead, he gave me a list of why his day was not going well either. A long list. Not what I wanted to hear. In the rational light of day, I understood that there was nothing he could do about my guilt ridden anxiety...I would need to work through that mommy madness on my own, but I wasn't ready to take on his list of issues as well, which I abruptly told him by not telling him directly. I just kept saying in a very curt, I'm not happy with anything right now way, "Don't worry, I'll take care of it." I hate being sick. I hate feeling guilty. Both at the same time stink.

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