I'm not trying to be dramatic (although I am naturally prone to it) but this is not an exaggeration.
We've all been sick since Thanksgiving and it feels like Valentine's Day or January the 74th but the fact remains that everyone is ill.
Schools have closed, parents are manic, and everyone is reporting cases of Flu A, Flu B, stomach bug, viral infection, strep, Bronchitis 37, Corona Virus, Budweiser Flu, Mai Thai Bird Cough, Cow Fever...
People when will we learn to keep our sick kids (and selves) H-O-M-E!?
As a former public school teacher and current (and always) lower-middle class citizen, I understand the pressure to not miss work, to keep your kids in school because you pay for childcare and don't have a Plan B, and to power through the sniffles because ain't nobody got time for that.
But friend, I NEED you to hear me.
People die from the flu.
People are dying (currently) from complications of these simple, everyday illnesses.
Our family has close friends who have had to bury their children the last two flu seasons due to these health scares that many are disregarding as they continue to send their fevery toddlers to daycare and cough their plague into the red cart at Target.
My job doesn't offer health insurance nor do they have paid sick days. I've missed four days in the last two weeks due to myself or one of my kiddos being down with the bug.
Do I write this knowing how I will pay all of my bills this month? No ma'am.
But was it the right choice to make? You bet your bottom dollar!
One of our kids has special needs.
The meds his body requires daily destroys his gut flora (If you aren't a crunchy mama, look it up. It's in the thing.) so even though we do our best to eat whole foods and pump him full of probiotics, he is more prone to illness or severity of common strands of virus and bacteria than most.
Your decision to send your kid to the play area of the gym, keep his commitment to basketball practice, or not waste your PTO on a measly cough could legit result in a hospital stay.
This is not a holier than thou speech or a high and mighty soap box, but the desperate cry of a terrified mama.
I don't know how our family will make up for the hit we've already taken with unpaid time off of work but when you cradle my baby at daycare avoiding your own doctor visit or your kid dribbles around mine on the court while sneezing into his jersey, you are choosing to expose my child to what could claim his life.
So please, PLEASE hear me when I beg you to seclude your sickness at home.
The Sincerely Scared Mama of Two