After living through the past few days, I feel like I've earned a few more of those elusive parent badges,and I'm sure I saw the "Sleep Deprivation Survivor" one tattooed on my chest this morning. I thought we'd managed to get all of those for raising Laura in just the first two years of her life, but apparently I was mistaken. It has been a long time since the boys were so small and so sick so I don't remember the specifics much. I do recall being away on business the time Matthew came down with a very light case of the chicken pox, and I know that our wonderful caregiver, Momma Lori, took the boys many times even though they were sick because my priorities were really off and there was some meeting I thought I needed to be at that day. But the 24/7, constant whining of a three year old combined with severe sleep deprivation... no, don't remember that. LOL
In my lacking parental state yesterday, I spent a lot of time just holding Laura through high fevers, many complaints of "my stummy hirts, Mommy" and just the normal need to be held when you are three and not feeling well. I held her through naps on our favorite rocking chair and laid on her floor while she rested in her crib because she didn't want to be alone. I read books over and over again, so many times that I had a few memorized, and I spent a lot of time praying over her hot, bewildered head. Mom's do that kind of thing. I am thankful I was here for it.
When we put her to bed last night after her dose of advil settled in, her fever was 102.8. She started whining periodically after 2 AM or so, and Laura, Don and I didn't get much sleep after that. But when she was finally ready to get up and face the day this morning, her fever was down quite a bit. And although her 'stummy' still hurts her regularly, she's eating some again and has accomplished more this morning than I ever expected after last night's events. The Lord is good. Not worrying about her definitely has its advantages. :)
Sleep deprivation however has it's tremendous disadvantages. I succumbed to the promise that Laura would eat her requested meal and sent Don to McDonald's for all of us last night for supper. Yes, definitely a case of severe sleep deprivation! But we'll survive. Many parents have gone before us, and I'm sure we'll be here again several times before we're done. Survival seems to be a given. I know that I can nap as she does. But Don can't and yet he never complains. I admire him so very much. Every day he gets up and goes to work no matter what has happened during the night, or how tired he is. He just goes because he loves us and he's taking care of us. Our children can't ask for a better provider, or a better example. And neither can I.