You’re going through your day at work…meetings, calls, planning and then you get the call from school. Your child is SICK. AHHHHHH!!!! You feel bad for your child, and then you immediately think, “What the heck am I going to do about work?!” The steps you take next will look VERY differently depending on your current home situation. Are you a single mom? Both parents work? Child is in daycare? Spouse is away on business? Child is in grade school?
It’s an all hands on deck situation, and it’s not fun for anyone. Currently I have 3 children in daycare, and most of them have been sick multiple times this past year. My husband and I both work full time. I’m an associate marketing manager and my husband is a credit analyst. Our jobs expect a lot out of us, and our days are VERY busy. When we miss a day of work, the emails pile up.
With all that being said when a child of ours is sick, we look at our schedules, current commitments and then decide who will stay home. I took a new job just a few months ago, and my husband and I both knew the sacrifice it would take especially for my husband. I wouldn’t have time accrued to take children to doctor’s appointments and I would feel guilty asking for time off to stay home since I was new. Thankfully I have a wonderful husband who is more than happy to pick up the slack, and his employer and boss are really great about putting family first.
For us, pediatric emergency care clinics have been LIFESAVERS as well as Remedy Urgent Care. There have been a few times after work that I’ve picked up my babies and one is running a fever. Instead of taking them to the doctor in the morning, I take them to the walk in clinic that night or call Remedy to come to my house. A few times I thought my son had an ear infection, and sure enough nothing. Either teething or viral. I’m so glad that I didn’t take off from work the next day to take him.
I also think of other ways I can make life easier for the family in tough times like this. Take out for dinner, ordering groceries from Shipt or Instacart and going in to the office earlier so I can be home sooner to help out. Balancing work and sick kids is extremely difficult, and having helpful neighbors, family and friends around is always a huge help. For married couples who both work, it’s a constant give and take and ultimately working together as a team to get through it!
I hope you don’t have to experience a sick kid this year, but if you do know that you are NOT alone. As parents we are out there pushing, fighting, working and striving every day to be the best parents we can be for our kids. One day they’ll thank us…maybe ; )