Most of the times, I look at Abhi and Achu and feel blessed to have them. I look at them amazed thinking, ‘Are these really my kids’, ‘Look at how adorably they call me amma’ etc. etc. And then there is the rest of the times. Times when they are sick. Times when they scare the hell out of me. Really. Freak me out. We have these sick periods once in a while and each time such a week happens, I feel dead scared and exhausted. Not all sick weeks are like this, though. The last to last one, not a big deal. I behave as if this is expected (and it is) and I am over it. Each time, with each sick week, I realize that I can take more and still survive.
And then something like the last week happens; It started out normally. Abhi got sick first. No cold or cough. Some fever, lots of vomiting and very very cranky. By Friday, he was doing better. I felt a bit relieved. But by night, Achu caught it. Whatever Abhi had; Only a higher version of it. At midnight, she was burning up so bad, that we gave her medicine and took her to ER. The whole weekend was spent caring for sick kids, cleaning up vomits, making them sleep, dealing with the extra cranky versions of the kids etc.
All that was fine. Nothing I haven’t seen before. In fact, by end of Sunday, I wanted to write about the little things that made me happy in the two days. I was so thankful for these little things despite kids being so sick. It came naturally to me to be happy about the little things and I was very proud of myself about that. By Monday morning, I had hoped things would come back to normal. Then it hit me bad. Monday morning, I woke up pretty early to a very crying Abhi. He wouldn’t let me put him down. Cried non-stop for an hour. He was hungry but he wouldn’t eat. When I force fed him, he vomited. Before I could change my dress he vomited again. Thrice. Answer to every question was no. I hadn’t slept well the night before, so you could imagine my condition. Being tired already, I tried to calm him down. No use. When Achu woke up, I felt I was going to die that moment. She woke up cranky too. I played something on laptop for them to watch and Abhi didn’t want that even. The whole thing went on for three hours. He finally ate a bit and slept after nanny arrived. I felt dead really. What was bothering me more was that I was going to skip work. AGAIN.
I stayed home in the morning. Screwed up my career a little more (I will fire myself for what I am these days). When I got home in the evening, situation was very chaotic. VERY. Like it was on the flight trip to India. Like it was in the first few weeks of our stay. I dread those days. Those memories drag me down so bad. And to realize that those cries can happen even now is a very scary thought for me. Somehow, we passed the evening. At sleep time, Abhi threw up again. Cried more. I was sitting in that dark bedroom, rocking him to sleep, smelling the vomit and I couldn’t help but cry over my situation. Vaks tells me this is going to be the case for another year at least and I don’t think I can take it for another year. I worry about the next time this happens. I worry about my future days, my career, my energy levels, my health etc. Looking at now, I have a nanny who is working out really well for us. P literally takes care of Abhi at nights. Each time Abhi is up, I go to the room and P sends me away, saying she will take care of him. I worry what will happen when she is gone or when we don’t have the nanny anymore. In future, how will I take care of two sick kids at nights and go to work in the morning? Murali works early hours, so he is literally unavailable any morning and hence in the nights too, unless its emergency. And even if he did help out (which he will), it’s either he or I getting tired. I feel bad for us. I feel scared thinking about all this.
I see people who have help at home or have sent kids to India for some time. But I know I wont do that. I wont ship my kids off to India, just because I can’t take care of them. What I really need is more energy. More hope that we can survive these periods. As tough as this can get, like Vaks says, its only a phase. I had lost so much hope last night, that I started feeling sick. Thinking about the low energy levels, cranky kids and those early morning meetings I always run to and deliverables in the office that I can’t really focus on. What if I screw it up?