I’m a real baby when I’m sick or injured. When I was young and I was sick my mom waited on me hand and foot. I was set up in my room comfortably in my bed, the small TV from the kitchen moved into my room so I could watch it between naps. Mom would bring the TV tray in and set it next to my bed with either soup, crackers, 7-up or whatever else I ask for (no milk products during a fever though! I learned that the hard way!) She had my medication schedule timed to the exact second in her head so if I needed that dose of Amoxicillin you can bet I would get it every 12 hours. Bottom line, my mom went into full on mama bear mode when I was sick. She always knew how to make me feel better whether it be her doting over me or coming in to check on me several times a day. When I had surgery for a dislocated shoulder I remember she brushed my hair and tied it back into a pony tail twice a day so it wouldn’t get tangled. I was stricken with Chicken pox during the time of my Kindergarten graduation (hey, to a little kid that is a HUGE deal!) and I cried for days that I couldn’t attend. Mom would sit and comfort me while she put dabs of pink Calandryl lotion all over the spots. She didn’t rub it in like, say suntan lotion.. nope, she covered each spot! Oh, and every day that I was out of school she packed my lunch box just like normal so I could eat it during what would be lunchtime at school. Little things like that make a huge difference, especially for a little kid. It was such a warm and safe feeling having your mom care for you like that, God I loved that. Even a few years after I moved out and was living in Lake Tahoe I came down with a horrible flu while housesitting for one of my grooming clients and the first thing I did was call my mom. It was instinct… and just by hearing her voice and having her tell me what to do to take care of myself it always helped. Kind of like a warm hug from my mom even though she was miles away. (with the flu, she would put a semi flat glass of 7-up in another room and I would get up occasionally to walk into that room for a sip. She felt that moving around a little bit along with tiny sips of flat 7-up was the key to helping the pukies. I never questioned it, and for me, it worked!) I remember laying there in that strange home shivering from a fever with the phone pressed to my ear talking with my mom. She made it all better just by being her.
I believe she instilled a bit of her mothering techniques into me when my loved ones are sick. When my ex was on the cusp of dying from cancer I did the same thing for him that my mom did for me. Same with my husband, minus the cancer part… it was the way I was raised, mom taught me how to mama bear just like she did right down to the internal medication timer. My mom rocked!
I’d be lying if I said that it didn’t hit me kind of hard the first time I got sick and I wasn’t treated the way I was when I was home with my mom. It just felt like a natural thing: You’re sick+ you get taken of = you get better faster. I learned that not everyone was raised in the same way and it has taken me a long time to accept and understand that. The first time I was sick life went on as usual. I stayed home from work and slept through my medication time. Later on that evening I was asked what I was making for dinner that night. What? But I’m sick! There was no flat 7-up, propped up pillows or doting. I admit, I felt insulted at first, but its irrational to be angry.. Everyone is raised differently and who am I to complain when someone doesn’t make a fuss over me even though I’m sick? I can’t help but secretly wish I still had that kind of care. In fact, every time I still get sick or hurt to this day I hope that somehow, someone would bring me soup or tuck the blankets around my feet or let me sleep without waking me up several times to let the dogs out or show them the ‘proper way’ how to microwave food. (ugh) Even though I’m sick the animals still have to be fed, laundry has to be done and the house cleaning has to be kept up on. Otherwise getting sick puts me back weeks in chores (and also gives me 5 angry hungry animals to appease)
Those days of being young and having my mom there to take care of me are long gone…. 😦 Someday I hope I see her again so I can thank her.