It is one of the toughest parts of parenting. When your child is unwell, it throws everything off kilter. And whether you are battling through a stomach bug or the entire family has been vomiting night after night, it can easily get on top of you. With this in mind, what does it really take to ensure that you are being an effective parent and are looking after yourself when it feels like you are in the throes of battle?
Don't Neglect Your Hydration
You may have to skip meals on occasion because the children are clinging onto you that much, but as long as you get the basics right, you will be ok. And this is especially true if you have a stomach bug. Hydration is so important, and you can easily make sure you have cleaner water with a water filter, but you can also make sure that you are keeping hydrated in other simple ways. If you like tea or coffee this counts towards your liquid intake.
Don't Worry About Food Quality
As parents, we may feel that when our kids are sick we've got to try and get as much health into them as possible! The reality is that you are run off your feet, and this means that if you're not able to get a perfectly proportioned plate of food in front of your children, don't feel guilty! Because everything is out the window at this point, if you can all get a meal down you, whether it's oven fodder, or you get takeout, if you and the children are fed to an extent, consider this a job well done!
Don’t Worry About Your Fitness Routines!
One of the biggest problems, when our kids are unwell, is our sense of health goes out the window, and this means that if we are one of those parents that like to hit the gym three times a week, we think that we have lost all of our gains by the time we get back to it. Having two weeks off may seem detrimental to your strength and vitality, but there are things you can do to navigate a lack of gym in your life. When children are sick and you still feel like you need to do some sort of exercise, don't neglect the concept of isometrics. It's such a very simple thing that you can do without actually needing to move, so if your child is attached to you, you can still tense your bicep or thigh to get a similar level of workout.
Go Easy on Yourself
You may feel guilty that you are not providing that healthy home, but when children are sick, you've got to give yourself a pass. We can all feel incredibly guilty that we're not doing enough for the ones we care about, but when we got a sick child we need to breathe and let any worry be. If you take it easy on yourself and be in survival mode for the next week or two, remember: this will pass.