I was sick ALL week. I didn’t realize how bad I felt, until…I was better.
Guilt ridden I laid in bed, trying to gain the momentum to take care of the kids, the emails, the home. Struggling to allow myself to rest, I couldn’t let go of what I usually do. A few days later the fog lifted and I started to do some things around the house again, retreating when my head ached.
It really wasn’t until recently that I felt 100 percent myself. And it dawned on me. I really struggled allowing myself to be sick. I couldn’t help but wonder if other moms wrestle with this when they are under the weather.
Do you ever push through your work day while feeling physically awful. Or lay low but feeling guilty for it? Why do we do this?
On the other side of the coin now, I want to speak into this conundrum.
Friends, when you aren’t feeling well, I implore you to give yourself grace. You are the one that knows YOU best. If you aren’t feeling like yourself, you are probably sick.
Are you bone tired inside? Unable to concentrate? Unable to do your normal daily tasks? Feeling dizzy? Congested with a cough? Girlfriend, take a seat. The world will go on turning. You have my permission to go get yourself some much needed r&r.
Here are 7 helpful tips for when you are sick
#1. Treat yourself how you would treat your child
When your baby has a fever, do you basically grab the moon for them? I thought as much. You can be sweet to yourself too, ya know? You matter. So, give yourself all the things that will make you feel better. Physically and emotionally.
Flavored seltzer water in a glass with a straw. Check.
Snacks that make you happy. Check.
Fluffy blankets. Check.
Favorite movies. Check.
A good book. Check.
And don’t be shy to hold the teddy bear your child brings you, they know what to do when you are down because their mama already showed them. Good job mama!
#2. Let go of the house
It’ll be dirty, the dishes will pile, the dog won’t be walked…it’s okay. Don’t look at the sink. Take your sweet little self upstairs, do not pass go, do not collect $100. Don’t look at any of the other rooms in your hallway. The only room that counts, is the one you are in. Make it how you want it and leave it at that. It’s your turn to be taken care of, the housework will always be there. Don’t worry about that, you can trust me on this one. The laundry never ends. Enjoy your time off.
#3. What’s for dinner?
Who knows and it does not matter. This is not your job today. You husband can figure it out. Grandma can hook you up. Your kids can eat cereal. Door dash is a click away. Do not worry your pretty little aching head with this minor detail. I know you run a tight ship and you have plans and you are afraid of hangry melt downs from years of traumatic toddlers.
This is your sick day. This is part of it. Order the pizza, everyone will be happy.
#4. Guilt is for the guilty
Okay my beloveds, here is where the mental health game gets real. Why feel guilty about not feeling well, when you can’t help that you don’t feel well? Why feel bad that others have to do things because you are unable to do them right now? It’s amazing what you usually do, do! Count that as credit to your awesomeness. Now is no time to layer the burden of guilt on top of feeling sick.
What do you have to feel guilty about? That you couldn’t go to work and spread a cold? That your head hurts so you are laying down? That your spouse is picking up dinner? That your kids are having a lot of screen time? That you spent an extra $10 on pizza for dinner than cooking something? Nothing. You have nothing to be guilty for. Those are all normal things to do and it is okay to do them. If we don’t stop making ourselves feel bad for being human, we will never get the rest, freedom and grace that we deserve.
Our minds, bodies and souls are connected. Help a body out by rewiring your thinking into good positive self talk. Tell yourself how much you rock it when you are healthy and it’s okay to be bummed about being sick. Then, let it go and allow yourself to enjoy the movie that’s on in front of you. No guilt. No shame. Just get yourself better, okay?
#5. Take a bath
This is kind of old wive tale ish, but ever since I was little my mom would tell me how my grandmother encouraged her to take a bath when all else fails. Sad? Take a bath. Heart broken? Take a bath. Sick? Take a bath. I’ve now taken on this little remedy myself and have since discovered there are a lot of amazing benefits to tub indulgence.
For instance, taking a warm bath has equivalent health benefits to a 30 minute walk! A good soak in the tub is optimal for heart health, improves blood circulation and oxedization, increases happy hormone endorphins like cortisol, helps you breathe easier, great for joints/bone inflammation, and aids in the increase of immunity. Not to mention, it just feels good. So, I highly recommend this tiny luxury of self care. Have essential oils like lavender? Even better. Got a candle? Perfect.
Draw the water, poor in the bubbles, and soak it in. It’s a win win!
Drinking enough water is key on any given day, especially since most of our body is made up of water. Regardless of the season you are in, it is easy to walk around dehydrated and not realize it. Drinking 8 cups of water is the general rule of thumb each day.
However, if you are peeing it out all day long, you might not actually be absorbing it. Often, our body can’t accurately hydrate depending on our diet, if our sodium levels are too low, for example. You can sprinkle a bit of salt in your water (don’t worry, just a little so you don’t taste it) and that will help your body to absorb the water better. Or you can go the electrolyte route. I
highly recommend Powerade or Gatorade. Those amazing electrolytes can do wonders! (It’s why we give toddlers Pediatlyte when they are lethargic with fever). Don’t skip out on this one, it’s an important step to getting better, quicker.
#7. Go to bed early
Last but not least, just go to bed. I know you’ve been laying around all day and maybe like me, by the time the kids are in bed you are ready to get up and move around. Maybe stay up and watch a show with your honey. Here’s the thing, there’s no need. Your body is telling you it needs a little extra sleep to recover from whatever you have, so do yourself a favor and call it a night. It doesn’t matter how early it is. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been resting. Obtaining enough sleep can reduce the length of time you are ill. Your body will have the opportunity to recover faster, and you’ll get back to that crazy busy life you love in no time.
So, put your pjs on, get some extra Z’s and thank me in the morning.
It’s no fun to feel poorly AND feel like you still have to do all the things, from one busy mom to another, I get it. I hope these 7 simple tips to help you when you are sick leave you feeling empowered and encouraged.
Here’s to taking care of ourselves, one little tip at a time.
Was this helpful for you? What do you do when you are feeling down and out? Share in the comments below.