I have been really sick this week. I am a real toughie and don't get sick frequently but I think this year has been a long one with life being really busy. As usual, what I do in life and experience becomes part of what I write about.
I realised as I lay on my bed and then the couch this week, that getting sick can be a challenge for any mom. And especially a homeschooling mother, as you aren't given the daily reprieve of sending your children to school.
How do you cope?
Here are some of the strategies I use to cope when I get sick. They are not fail proof, but they have worked well in our family.
Give Your Children ResponsibilitiesThey are quite capable. Don't feel bad. I know as mom's we often feel guilty lying or sitting still but if we plan on getting better, let them do it. You are always serving your family - it's good for them to serve you too. (including your husband)
Lower Your Expectations with Food
When Friends Offer to Help - say YES!Don't be shy! We all love to help our friends, so let them do something in return. They wouldn't offer if they didn't want to.
RestI know that sleep is nature's best way of healing the body. Drink lots of fluids but REST. Take vitamins but still you need to REST. We often take all the meds and then continue to run around because we start to feel better. Don't let the meds lie to you, you still need to REST.
Let Your Children Pray for YouWe read to our children about how Jesus healed the sick. Let them lay hands on you and pray. I believe that children have the faith we often lack. You would be amazed at the difference my children's prayers have made in my life.
Homeschool the easy wayHomeschooling can still happen even if you are sick. I personally don't like the children to stop just because I am sick. I find that it can get more challenging if they don't, because they get up to mischief and they start having a go at each other.
This is what I do:
* Read aloud time is extended - I read if I can, otherwise I get the children to have turns.
* Computer work: I have a few really great computer programs which we use for History, English, Anatomy and Mandarin. So any of these can have them learning with the least amount of supervision.
* For little ones, bring toys into the room you are resting in and CLOSE THE DOOR. Let them play in the room with you.
* For the more easily distracted children, let them work on the bed next to you. Nothing motivates a child more than knowing someone is watching. (at least in our house it works that way)
* Don't stop extra curricular activities if you can help it, as they need to get out. Ask someone in your group to help. Give them a call! You might not be up to it, but believe me your children are - and hopefully they will use up some of that energy before they come home.
* Get your husband to get some good quality educational videos or audio books. I have had my children watch some amazing nature videos - different learning medium and they loved it. Audio books are an excellent resource for keeping play quiet. They are usually so enthralled by the story, they don't want to miss a word. The result? Quiet play. Lego is great for this.
* Focus on your core subjects - don't try and do everything.
* Home school when you can. I often sleep late when I am sick. Have a chat to your children the day before and let them know what you expect of them. Let the children spend the first part of their morning doing chores and some quiet free play in their rooms where they won't disturb you.
Encourage and Thank Your Family FrequentlyTell them how much they mean to you for what they are doing. I know the cynical might say, "well I do this every day and no one says anything to me". But this is your opportunity for positive reinforcement. Your children need to know that they are helping you. Most children get quite concerned when mommy is sick because "mommy never gets sick". Reassure them and encourage them.
Your husband will be stretched and will need you to tell him what a great job he is doing. From grocery shopping or even the fact that he made it through the day in one piece:) Let him know his value. You will be building him up and your appreciation will motivate him even more!
I would love to hear from you.
How do you cope when you are sick?
Do you have a special strategy that helps you cope?
Why not leave a comment and share some of the lessons you have learnt through these times.