Friday, February 23, 2007

RM February 9 - Dealing with sick children

This is linked heavily to my stomach bug post from a couple of days ago, the issue of working with small children has been very prominent.

Dealing with sick children

There can be sometimes nothing more stressful when you are a parent than your child being ill and when you are a single parent with no family living near you to help, this stress is intensified somewhat.

And as most parents know children have a propensity to picking up everything that is going around. You name it the Young Wan has had it and sometimes two and three times and sometimes completely inexplicably so.

She caught measles at 16 months, two months before she could be inoculated against it. She has had German measles, bronchiolitis which hospitalised her twice as a baby and left her prone to chest infections enduring the most awful and constant wheeze.

Thankfully she grew out of that by the age of three as well as the asthma it had also left her with.

If you are working outside of the home and your child is in a crèche they will pick up everything and more.

One of the most worrying illnesses the Young Wan has had in recent years was an awful attack of whooping cough.

Despite all the illnesses I have listed here I would consider her to be a very healthy child. She was always back to herself pretty quickly after each bout.

The whooping cough time I didn’t know what was happening – she just kept getting sicker and sicker as well as more and more lethargic as each day went on.

Until the day, despite not eating at all, she was violently throwing up. Before that point I hoped it was a bug she would shake herself, I am not into throwing antibiotics at every little sniffle. But it was apparent at this stage the poor honey would need some medical intervention.

I practically carried her 11-year-old self to the doctors crying who diagnosed whooping cough. I won’t go into the other patients in the waiting room who listened to her constantly being sick in the bathroom yet wouldn’t let her go in front of them while they obtained sick notes from the doctor.

So not only was I completely freaked out about how ill she was, I also had a serious amount of stress heaped on me by work.

At the time I didn’t work with anyone who had a child and some of them just didn’t get it or understand.

My immediate superiors were not very sympathetic – my having to take time off was a serious inconvenience that would certainly place more work on other’s shoulders.

The fact they had taken sick leave on occasions, something I rarely did, and some more than others was lost on them.

While there was support from my peers, the level of support from my bosses was slight. They managed to make me feel outrageously guilty when I would phone in. So my stress levels at that time were very very hard to deal with. But I somehow did.

Then today I got a call from the school saying she had a rash and what should they do.

Thankfully my work is now more supportive and I was able to have her come to me in work, where I checked the rash and it doesn’t look like anything.

And considering the fact she is now 15 years old I can send her home by herself without feeling like I am neglecting her. I am lucky to be able to do that, but if she was a couple of years younger it wouldn’t be so easy.

So for all of you out there juggling parenthood, work and small children, there’s a mum here who thinks you are great.

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The Humble Housewife said...

Yea, you got to wonder about those f****rs in the doctors office! Been in that situation with a screaming baby, coughing and puking when not screaming and everyone in the room was obviously annoyed by it, but you think one of them would let her go ahead? Nope! Humans... so lovely!

Claire said...

I'm so glad that in my new job nearly all the managers and leads have young kids. It's such a relief to know that all I have to do is say that Eve is sick and they understand completely that I have to go home to be with her.

I've worked in places that weren't understanding at all and the pressure and stress on parents is just horrible. They were always being pulled up for not being "team players."