Sick Leave Mummy Style
When I used to fall unwell, before baby, although I felt rotten there was some slight excitement about being able to lie on the sofa in a lempsip stupor, watching Homes Under the Hammer and This Morning.
Now, when I first feel the signs of a cold, I’m necking echinacea like no tomorrow and ramming oranges down my throat quicker than a martini.
You see, nowadays, I don’t want to be unwell. I dread being unwell. It’s probably the worst thing that could happen to me (yes I know when anyone is unwell it sucks, but still, I feel the dread).
You can’t call in sick to the Mummy job. Oh no. That is not part of the employment contract.
Whether you have been coughing your guts up all night doesn’t matter. You will be up at 6am making playdoh bananas and feeding the baby jelly like there was not a problem in the world.
Peppa Pig will be pounding into your head like a hammer, and your head will be so fuzzy you’ll wonder if you’re hallucinating when the twirlywoos come onto the TV.
The child may demand to Play shop, for you to make juice, (not orange juice, purple juice), to go on the potty, off the potty, dress up, dress off, reading hairy mclairy very loudly and demanding pasta and pesto for lunch and not eating it, all the while you’re breathing like Darth Vader and dragging one foot behind you.
Your only contact with the outside world, your phone, will be demanded to watch YouTube videos of adults opening glitter putty coloured eggs. There is no escape.
Child will want to sit on you, preferably your chest so that you actually can’t breathe much. Even better when they sing a song in your face.
You’ll consider going back to work. I did once, and was sent straight back. I cried all the way home.
Food wise, you manage to survive on dry cereal, hula hoops and squash, muller light yoghurts and quorn chicken nuggets. Time will tick by very very slowly.
Where is the other half to free you from this nightmare?
Then they come home, tell you they don’t feel well*, and go to bed.
You read bedtime stories to the child until your voice cracks and you can’t stop coughing. Then you manage to wheeze ‘twinkle twinkle’ and crawl out of the room with the last ounce of energy you have, to the safety of your bed. You may forget to brush your teeth and wear the same pyjamas that you’ve have been wearing for the last 48 hours.
And then if you’re lucky, you may sleep for a bit.
I’m all for a cure for the common cold, me. Anything to try and prevent another sick day.
*Is it me, or when you say you’re unwell, your partner will say they are unwell too? And they are always worse than you, aren’t they?