Every once in a while I will be sitting in a toy filled living room with the television blaring a cartoon and the kids are playing loudly. Then I smell the little one’s diaper and know that I need to change it soon even though I just sat down from cooking, serving, and cleaning dinner. While trying to decide how long that diaper can wait I see the little one open a drawer and begin throwing all the DVDs on to the floor. Suddenly a general feeling of nausea hits my stomach and a dull headache begins to fester my physical well being.
I push through the nausea and the heachache to take care of everything. The television sound is turned down, the kids are asked to quiet down, the diaper is changed, and the toys and DVDs are cleaned up. Then once all that is done the bedtime routine begins. PJs are found and put on, teeth are brushed, books are read, prayers are said, and then the lights are out. I slump down in the Lazy-Boy in my bedroom and miraculously the nausea and headache go away. Then I realize that what I was feeling is what I call being “kid sick.”
The Definition of Being “kid sick”
“Kid sick” usually happens at the end of a trying day with young children. The noise level is high and I am constantly being needed for something. Then for some inexplicable reason I simply don’t feel very well and my energy levels are depleted. I know it isn’t a cold or allergies. I know that I’m not nervous or highly stressed out. However, once the kids are down and no one needs me for anything the unwell feeling goes away and I feel physically normal again. I have energy again to get things done.
Doubting Your Role As a Mother When Feeling “kid sick”
I don’t know if being “kid sick” will go away when the kids can do more things for themselves. I hope so. What I do know is that being a mother of three children ages 5 and under can be physically draining. I begin to doubt the importance of all that I do for them when I am tired and overwhelmed.
I was thinking about how hard it is serve all day long when I came across these three blog posts:
Sandra People’s writes about Raising Missionaries. Sandra reminds me that the work I am doing now is valuable, because my kids are going to grow up to be awesome adults that impact the Kingdom of God.
Paige Knudsen writes in “just you wait” about her college age daughter serving in Kosovo with Operation Christmas Child. She describes how her daughter even tells her mom what God is doing in her life. I hope my kids will feel comfortable to share with me what God speaks to them.
Sarah Mae writes about 8 ways to nurture your child’s soul at Simple Mom. The post offers some sage advice about respecting your children and helping them sort out their feelings and proper boundaries.
These blog posts help me remember that my job is very important. Then as if to underline all that I have been thinking and feeling a friend shares with me her latest conviction about her role as a mother. She realized that her children’s salvation is not guaranteed. Her children are her mission field and where she is called to serve at the moment. She is called to not only parent them, but to disciple them.
The Cure for Being “Kid Sick”
The only way to avoid being “kid sick” is praying every day for God’s grace and strength to parent well that day. For whatever reason sometimes my body can’t handle all the demands and I get physically unwell. The physical discomfort is temporary, but the love I have for my kids and who they are as people is worth it.
I like to think I am a logical parent and that I will remember the larger picture of their lives, but I forget. I still need reminders from God’s word, from the blogosphere, and my friends that all the work it takes to raise awesome people is very valuable work.
Have you ever felt “kid sick”? Do you ever doubt your value as a mother?