As originally posted on www.thehodgepodgediaries.com 06/12/13
There's something about a child with a cold that drives me up the wall.
The child obviously can't help it, they acquired the cold while innocently playing with an infested toy, or are no doubt victims of the spray from another child's uncovered cough or sneeze. But the constant coughing, the constant look of exhaustion, the whining, the slime, the sleepless nights, it's enough to send me over the edge.
Ever ate a meal with a child who can't breathe through their nose? Lord, help me.
Understandably, the second their afflicted they want nothing more than to cuddle with their Mama. They run to you with open arms, snot smeared from one cheek to the other, tears running down their face from the sinus pressure and when you throw your arms around them to comfort them they cock their heads back and sneeze unbridled with the force of a nuclear bomb, coincidentally at the same moment in which you open your mouth in a wide, uncontrolled yawn, caused from the previous night's lack of sleep. Just what you need, of course, because Motherhood comes with an unlimited number of call-in days and who needs to be clear-headed and energised anyway, right?
You can try to keep an internal outbreak from spreading; wash your hands until they bleed, Lysol every door knob, every toy. But you know the second you're not looking, the child with the boogers is going to find their brother or sister and stick their fingers in their mouth.
The "cold" will subside in one child, then move on to the next, until you start to feel as though your house has become an infirmary and even the air feels sick.
It's not fun and I don't wish it on anyone
So I'll try and keep it to ourselves. I won't bring my kid to play with your kid until they're feeling better, I won't send my kid to school drugged to high heaven because he "only has a cold" and heaven forbid he miss a day of kindergarten. I'm going to try my best to teach my kids to cough into their elbows, sneeze into a Kleenex and that NO, you're sleeve is NOT under ANY circumstances, a place to wipe your nose. I'll keep my children from the masses whenever I can, avoiding unnecessary trips to play group, the library or the local swimming pool. When we must venture out; I won't stand by and watch as an abundance of stuff pours from their nasal cavity, I'll wipe it with the adequate supply of Kleenex I made sure to bring with me. If you see us out at the grocery store or picking up a sibling from school, I'll be sure to stop them from sticking their germ infested heads inside of your baby's stroller to give them sweet, sticky kisses.
I wouldn't want to think that my inaction or lack of consideration caused another child to suffer, another Mother to lose sleep. So, I'll teach my children proper hygiene and help them when they need it. I'll do what I can to keep it contained and I'll thank you, ahead of time, for doing the same.