Hello mama of sick kids. Are you feeling weary? You are not alone in this season of life. I’m walking in it right along with you.
Last night didn’t consist of much sleep. Our 8 month old has an ear infection and pneumonia. After trying to rock, cradle, nurse and soothe her to sleep for hours, I gave up around midnight. Honestly, I was getting frustrated with the situation, and with her.
Just GO TO SLEEP already.
Unfortunately frustration didn’t help either of us. What our daughter needed was her now weary mama to help her feel better and just be there with her.
Her weary mama needed to stop trying to force sleep and just accept we were both doing the best we could.
Acceptance looked like getting up. At midnight.
We came downstairs where she was happy to crawl around and explore. This gave my arms and back a welcome break. I prayed and worked on my bible study homework. My answered definitely needed some help in the morning, they were a little jumbled and scribbled with bleary eyes.
At 3 am, she finally went to sleep and slept for a couple of hours. Then she was up for 2 more and back down just when the big kids were getting up.
Ugh. It’s a good thing she’s cute.
Some days, there just isn’t enough sleep to go around! Are you in this place today too?
You are not alone. I am walking through this season right along with you. Every time one child gets sick, it sets off a chain reaction and the others get sick too. One by one. Sometimes it is hard to tell when the first sickness ended and the next one began.
These winter months can feel incredibly long, can’t they?
I am sorry you’ve had to cancel play dates, volunteering, your own doctor appointments and so much more. These treasured activities were carefully planned to break up your week. I know you needed a change of pace from being at home with the kids all day, every day.
Missing these activities leaves a void for your children and for you. It can be so hard when you have little adult interaction for days (or weeks)!
We all need other people to lift us up.
I also know how having to cancel plans over and over can make you, a responsible and good friend, feel flaky. Parenting little ones can make you feel like you have no control over your schedule; the sickness and these little people control the schedule instead.
You might be feeling guilty. Don’t.
Although you may feel that way, I know from experience, your friends and family DO understand. Many have experienced the same things with their kids and are happy to extend grace and encouragement to you.
Your friends and family also appreciate when you choose not to share your illnesses when you do show up. Sharing illnesses with other families is like a terrible gift that keeps on getting re-gifted.
You may not be able to get together this time, but be honest and reach out when you can. Then, extend grace when this happens the other way around, because it will!
Because we’re all in this thing together.
This morning I was greeted by a now-healthy child who brought the plague home in the first place. He was ready for breakfast. All I could do was muster a smile and grunt as I rolled out of bed.
So. Very. Tired.
I felt immediate mom-guilt for my response. He was happy to see me, while I felt defeated that he woke me up so soon. Quit the mom guilt too!
He went on ahead downstairs so I could take a few minutes to myself before jumping into the day. My main thought was sleep. In moments like this, I confess worshiping sleep, as if I will never, ever get any more again.
I speak from experience when I say being mad about sleep is understandable, but not at all helpful. With three kids, a nap for me will not happen. Likely, naps elude your most exhasting days too.
When I get up, I need to surrender my sleep and lack of it to God. Otherwise I’ll spend the entire day mad at someone.
Sometimes all we can do is pray for help to survive the day.
That’s exactly what I did. While praying, God gave me a bigger perspective. Sleep is eluding me right now, but it will eventually happen. As it did with all other sicknesses, and with the other two babies.
God brought the following verse to mind:
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.2 Corinthians 12:9-10 ESV
When we feel like we have no energy and no motivation to face the challenges ahead of us, God will shine.
Today it will not be my power but God’s as He equips me to serve Him and my family well. For His power is made perfect in my weakness. And God’s perfect power is certainly enough for my tiredness.
It is no coincidence that my daily devotion later this morning just ‘happened’ to be based on this same scripture. Apparently God really wanted me to hang onto this truth today. I’m so glad He did. It’s a lifeline I desperately need today (and every day).
Now I am passing it along to you.
What do you need an extra measure of today? (Besides the obvious need for sleep and healthy kids – lets just trust He will cover those in His perfect timing).
Maybe you need more love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness or self-control? I’m right here with you.
Certainly, God delights in being generous when we ask Him for more fruit of the Spirit.
Ask Him to shine through your tired eyes and work with those worn out arms, backs and hands. And He will.
Surrender is your best bet, which is good. When you’re too tired to stifle God’s power, that’s to your benefit.
There’s no need for self-reliance today.
God is strong. He is capable. When we feel depleted, He has limitless joy and energy to keep us going. And He has compassion on us and our children when we are all struggling.
Tap into His strength and power today. He will carry all of you to easier, healthy days.
Hang in there mama, you’re not alone.
These kids are worth it and you are exactly the mama they need today.
Goodbye sickness, we’re over you. Go away.
Ecclesiastical Encouragement for Exhausted Moms, Family Life
10 Bible Passages for Exhausted Parents, Amber Lia
Soul Care for Exhausted Young Mothers, Desiring God