Today I had planned to write a light hearted travel post for a Wanderlust-y kind of Wednesday, but my heart doesn’t feel as light as it usually does – on account of having one sad, sickly little baby in the house.
Of course, it’s just a case of the sniffles – which Annabel brings home from play school about once a month and Ruby then makes it her business to pick up and turn into a full-on cold. And a cold for a baby is the opposite of fun. Annabel was never ill for a day of the first year of her life – but this is not to be for baby number two. We reverted back to newborn status last night as I saw every hour on the clock from 11pm to 7am, doing anything I could think of to comfort a confused 6-month-old who couldn’t fathom why she was breathing like a steam train and heaving ominously (thank you post nasal drip). I know that today, as we run big sister around for her various activities, baby will be in and out of her car seat more times than either of us would like. My heart aches for her streaming, red-rimmed eyes and her “o” shaped mouth as her little chest heaves and she tries to cough without really knowing how or understanding why – and it’s all just too much for a mummy.
It’s days like today when I count my blessings, and then I count them again. I’m not a fan of the term “blessed”. I can’t bring myself to write it without thinking it looks smug on the page. But blessed is exactly what I am. I have two beautiful children who are in rude health 99% of the time and I’m all too aware that this isn’t the case for many people.
I follow the blogs of a few Mummy Heroes, who are raising kids with special needs and medical conditions, or who write about a grief that is too big and too unimaginable for any words I know. I read with terror in my heart the things they go through every day – the things that have become their “normal”. Parenting is hard under the most perfect of circumstances, and whenever I think I’m having a bad day I’m brought back down with a bump by the stunningly fortunate reality that I have no idea what a truly bad day looks like. This is an ignorance that must be the most blissful of all, and I’m grateful for it every single day.
So now I’m off to give Ruby another cuddle, to feel her forehead again and administer more saline drops to give her some relief. When Annabel bounces in from her play school this afternoon I will squeeze her extra tight. Tonight if I’m awake through the small hours I won’t mind a bit. This is my normal and gosh, I’m “blessed”.