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When your baby is sick

…Doesn’t it just break your heart? 

This week, as you know, I’ve been alone with Baby G, so naturally she had to come down with a cold. This is just the second time in her little baby life that she’s been sick, and I knew it wasn’t anything serious, so I wasn’t really worried or anything. But that didn’t stop this gray cloud of depression from hanging over me for most of yesterday. I could barely look at her glassy eyes without tearing up. 

My sick baby.

My sick baby.

This is a phenomenon I’d never be able to explain before I was a mother. I thought people just said stuff like that to sound, I don’t know, noble or dramatic or something. But the hurt I experienced yesterday was real and physical, like someone knocked the wind out of me. 

You mothers of older children are of course going to think “that’s nothing, just wait until she [insert other painful milestone for children].” But can I ask you to remember what it was like when you had your first little one? Think back to that first cold… Didn’t it rip you up that you couldn’t snap your fingers and make your tiny creature feel all better? We’ve already talked about how motherhood is giving your heart away forever. My baby didn’t feel good and I was literally depressed about it. 

An old friend came down to visit me this week who happens to have a girl almost the same age as Baby G. It was the first time the girls met and they had great fun together … until Baby G came down with her cold. She probably infected my friend’s baby (we can hope not!) but the two had some nice quiet “sicky” times together yesterday.  

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One thing that cheered me up just a little was NPR’s recent report that an infant’s body might actually “allow” itself get sick now and then to build up a microbe collection for a healthy immune system down the road. Here’s to collecting microbes!

Lucky for both of us, she seemed to perk up last night and by this morning she seemed about 75 percent better. So the world is slowly coming back into color for me and we are both smiling again.  

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7 Comments

  1. Paula W on November 8, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    Don’t let anyone try to make you embarrassed for feeling brokenhearted when you’re kid is sick. I think you are right, some people just forget what it was like with their first kid during that first year. I would even suggest there is something wrong with you if you didn’t feel a little like crying watching her suffer. Sure maybe we will have a thicker skin with our next babies, or when they get bigger. But she is still your baby and you do have a heart.

    Baby O and Baby G look so sweet together. You made my day posting these. <3

  2. Nancy on November 9, 2013 at 9:21 am

    We were in the exact same boat as you this week and I can relate 100%!! It was my daughter’s second cold too, but this was much worse than the first one – my heart was breaking watching her look so lifeless and sick. I understand so much better now the feeling of wanting to take someone else’s pain yourself! Sounds to me like you’re a great mama full of empathy and compassion for your baby. Nothing wrong with that! Hope she’s made a full recovery!

  3. Lauren Markman on November 9, 2013 at 11:19 am

    Every time a child is hurt, a mom feels it – it doesn’t matter if it is a cold or a banged knee or something worse. You can’t explain sicknesses to children until they are much older, so the only thing you can do is snuggle them and let them sleep. The snuggling mommy cure is something children of all ages can understand.

    • creatingmom on November 9, 2013 at 8:31 pm

      It’s a wonderful excuse to snuggle and stay in PJs all day. 😉

  4. Amber on November 9, 2013 at 8:38 pm

    We just had a stomach virus make the rounds through our house and I can honestly say that it doesn’t get any easier. I went through it with my son after he was born and now with my daughter. It’s a painful thing for a momma to deal with, seeing them sick and unable to do anything to help. Just remember, this too shall pass, and when she gives you that first big smile after a crummy couple of days, all will be right in the world again. Thanks for stopping by and linking up with us for Social Media Sunday. Looking forward to reading more!

    • creatingmom on November 9, 2013 at 9:20 pm

      Thanks for finding me! Oh man, it terrifies me just hearing about a stomach virus “making the rounds.” Yes that first post-cold smile was the dorkiest and toothiest one I’ve seen yet. LOVED it.

  5. Angela on November 10, 2013 at 4:29 am

    You’re such a good momma!! How could it not break your heart when your baby is sick; it’s just the worst thing ever!
    My almost 5 year was sick last week and I was so sad. I wanted to cry every time I looked at him!

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