Working for the Weekend

Saturday, December 10, 2011

At the end of this past work week, Michael and I pretty much collapsed. It was a rough one.

Unfortunately, after I posted on Tuesday about Nora's fever, she didn't get better. In fact, just hours later, she was way worse.

Michael and I woke up to Nora crying at around 12:45 a.m. Given that she had been sick, I didn't wait long before going in to her. When I took her out of her crib, I could tell right away that she was burning up.

I had given her ibuprofen before she went to bed at 7:00 p.m., so I grabbed the Tylenol (we were alternating drugs, especially when enough time hadn't passed since the last ibuprofen dose to be able to give her another one) and the thermometer and took her to the rocking chair in her room. Poor baby had her eyes closed the whole time, but was whimpering and just generally uncomfortable.

Beep! Thermometer registered and it was... 105 degrees.


I confirmed the ear thermometer reading with an underarm temp, and after giving her Tylenol and rocking her for a few minutes in the chair, Michael and I agreed that we'd bring her into bed with us. Honestly, we were too afraid to leave her in her crib by herself when her fever was that high--even if she would've let us.

To make a long night short, Michael and I were up until 4:00 a.m. waiting for her fever to break. The Tylenol dose I gave her only seemed to lower her temperature by a degree--to 104--which was not very comforting. Nora did her best to sleep on us, but her high fever was causing a lot of discomfort, which caused her to squirm around a lot and wake up frequently, whining and crying. As worried parents, we were just too wound up to fall asleep during all of this. At around 3:00 a.m., I decided to give her another dose of ibuprofen (it had then been eight hours since the last ibuprofen dose, but only about two hours since the Tylenol dose), and thankfully, within the hour, her fever finally dropped down to 102 degrees and Nora showed noticeable improvement. Her breathing--which had been rapid and loud when her fever was really high--slowed and quieted, and we decided that she would probably sleep best in her own bed. We were right, as she went back into her crib easily, and we were able to get a few hours of shut-eye ourselves.

So, Wednesday was fun. (I hope you sense the sarcasm.) We had been up the majority of the night, and clearly, Nora was not going back to daycare, so we had to figure out how we were going to juggle our work at work and taking care of our precious girl at home.

And although her fever never reached the 104-105 degree range again, Nora continued to run a fever of 101-103 on Wednesday and Thursday, buying her the rest of the week at home with us.

Juggle, juggle, juggle.

I will say that I have never been so thankful for the flexibility of my employer. As luck would have it, my work load was pretty heavy this week, so I was unable to just take sick time and relax about it all. For Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, Michael and I shared the work-at-home parent duties, splitting the days into morning and afternoon "shifts." One of us would go to work in the morning, the other would stay home, and then we'd switch in the afternoon. Our managers and coworkers were incredibly flexible and understanding about it, which made a stressful situation a little less stressful.

Oh, I also have to say: Parents who actually work at home while simultaneously keeping their kids at home with them? And do this on a regular, everyday basis? I HAVE NO IDEA HOW YOU DO IT.
On the days that Nora was feeling especially awful, she slept a lot, which allowed us to get work done, even when we were home with her. But when she was awake, we took special care to have our focus be on her, making up for the time later--usually after she was in bed at night, which made for long days for us!

On Friday, Nora was feeling better, but was still SUPER clingy and whiny. I was home in the morning, but had a deadline I had to meet, so I was trying to finish up a few things and Nora just would NOT let me put her down. I ended up propping her half on/half off my lap on the couch, turning on the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, and working on my laptop on the other side of me. Did it work? Sure. But I also felt like a terrible mother.

So it all felt like a double-edged sword. If I was trying to WORK from home in order to meet my deadlines at work, I felt badly if I was instead taking time out for Nora. And if I was turning my attention to my work instead of Nora, I felt terribly that I was ignoring my sick baby.

Working parenthood sucks sometimes. That's really all there is to it.
On the bright side of things, I think both Michael and I really did enjoy and take advantage of our extra time with our sweetheart this week. She was so clingy/snuggly, and she just wanted US. And no matter how hard it is to see your kid sick, there is something really special about being the only ones who can make her feel better.

I'm glad she's finally on the mend, but I'll really miss her when we return to our normal schedule on Monday.


Vanessa December 12, 2011 at 8:21 AM  

Poor baby, with such a high fever. You must have been so scared! I am so glad Nora is on the mend, even if it means fewer daytime snuggles (in the week, at least). Wishing her a full recovery v v soon!

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