Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Solo Mom: No rest for the weary

Posted January 29, 2015

Stacy Lamb

 A coworker of mine emailed our group the other morning to say she’d be in late. Her husband wasn’t feeling well and she was driving him to the doctor. I thought that was very sweet, and typical of her, being such a sincere and caring person to begin with. But, I have to admit, I was also a little envious.

That morning, it was all I could do to drag myself out of bed and get my kids to school. It’s going around, apparently, and I wasn’t feeling well either. It’s no fun being sick in the first place, but when you have little people depending on you, everything seems much worse.

I got the kids taken care of (I’m sure you other parents out there will agree – somehow we just do what needs to be done, in spite of anything else), and called my doctor. I had been coughing so badly I had completely lost my voice, so I’m sure I sounded quite creepy whispering through the phone.

At this point, I considered emailing back my coworker and asking her for a ride to my doctor too … though I’m joking, I do have lots of close friends and family that probably would have helped me out if I weren’t too stubborn to ask.

As I’m sitting in the exam room, waiting on the doctor to return with some medicine to “open up my lungs,” my phone rings. It’s the kids’ school, and now my daughter is coughing. When it rains, it pours, right? Next stop, the pediatrician. Sigh.

OK, with all the texting we do now, I’m thinking these doctor’s offices need to accept appointment requests via text – I’m sick, I have no voice, and when I try to talk, I just cough more. Surely this can be done!

Luckily, neither my daughter nor I has the flu (yay for flu shots!). I’ve got a pretty nasty bronchitis/pneumonia double punch. The pediatrician tells my girl “You’ve got a cold. Go home and take care of your mother.”

Ha! I wish. She is fairly independent and really doesn’t require any coddling at this age, but I do still have her healthy, energetic little brother to care for. At age 5, I can’t really expect him to entertain himself for too long, let alone get his homework done, while I sleep.

Somehow we make it through the evening routine and I collapse into bed as soon as the kids do. Of course, I know I have to get up early the next morning and get the boy off to school again (my daughter will spend another sick day at home, her and I trading places between our beds and the couch for most of the day).

I am confident it was a sick single mother who coined the phrase “no rest for the weary.”

Stacy Lamb of Apex is the divorced mom of two. She is an active member and former organizer of Single Parents of the Triangle. Find her here monthly.


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  • Kathleen Newberg Jan 31, 2015
    user avatar

    I don't think 5-year-olds should have homework.

  • Vicky Corey Jan 30, 2015
    user avatar

    I hope you guys feel better soon! I've been there as a single parent so I completely understand what you are going through!

  • Mary Zulch Jan 30, 2015
    user avatar

    Ahhh..I'm a single parent of 3. I have been so exhausted some days, I can't fall asleep. My thoughts and adrenaline level just won't let me. And vacation days? Ha! Used to stay home with sick children. It is what is is, but boy, do I wish I had sick time for kids in those benefits somewhere!

  • snowl Jan 30, 2015

    I'd say you are doing just fine without a "3rd child" to take care of when (he) is sick.. winkwink ;)