Sick Day

June 6, 2012

Oh man! I can’t seem to shake this head cold. It started on Saturday afternoon. Monday was the worst. And (hooray!) I’m feeling a bit better today. Thank goodness I can work in my pajamas. : ) Ben Blair has been such a sweetheart, picking up the slack while I’m functioning through a fog. He’s so good!

I was thinking of when the tables are turned — when he’s having a sick day. I’m the worst! I feel awful that he’s sick and simultaneously irritated that he’s home but unable to help. I think I actually find it easier when he’s out of town. If he’s away from home, I know I can’t expect any help from him. But when he’s home (even if he’s sick), I think I hold on to a tiny bit of hope that he’ll miraculously feel better by the time dinner and bedtime routines come around.

What about you? Would you prefer a sick spouse or a traveling spouse? How do you handle sick days at your house?

P.S. — When I’m sick in the winter, I crave homemade chicken noodle soup. When I’m sick in the summer, all I want is grapefruit! I accidentally cut the one above on the axis instead of equator, but I thought it looked so pretty, I snapped a photo. What do you crave when you’re sick?

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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Megan - So Inviting! June 6, 2012 at 10:16 am

I feel the same way about sick dads! I feel bad when I get irritated because he is so great when I’m having a sick day. Poor guys! I also do better when he is traveling or working late. I wait and wait for him to get home then I realize everything runs smoother when I’m in charge – but I don’t want to be in charge when dad is home!!! Do they know we think this?! I bet they feel the same way, we seem to have found all around good dads/husbands.


2 Melissa@Julia's Bookbag June 6, 2012 at 10:39 am

Oh my goodness I hear you! When my husband is sick, I’m like Why are you sick? YOU’RE NOT THAT SICK! Terrible, I am.

I crave British period films when I’m sick. :)


3 r8chel June 6, 2012 at 10:44 am

The other night I forgot to run the dishwasher, and at breakfast time, my five-year-old informed me that the only spoon he could find is one with “poky things” on the end. Ha! I hand-washed a regular spoon for him so he didn’t have to eat his yogurt with a grapefruit spoon. :)


4 Amorette Gwynn June 6, 2012 at 11:02 am

popsicles!!!! that’s what I usually want when I’m sick.
And my husband is the best nurse ever but as a patient, quite cranky (although I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be a good nurse, so it works – he likes to left alone when he’s sick!_


5 sarah June 6, 2012 at 11:05 am

you totally hit the nail on the head with how i feel about a sick spouse. and i feel TERRIBLE about it as well. i try my very best to insist he stays in bed, not bother him, and give him lots of time to sleep (with a few check-ins to see if he needs anything). but at the same time i catch myself getting irritated when i’m faced with a super duper icky diaper, tantrum, or other difficult situation solo. when he’s out of town i miss him horribly and get bored when the kid is in bed, but at least i’m mentally prepared to do it all alone. *sigh* when sick i crave lots of time in bed, water, and ramen noodles.


6 Cheryl Burchett June 6, 2012 at 11:42 am

Traveling spouseDEFINITELY! My man is a bigger baby when sick than our actual baby! AND I can’t help think about how I am still mom when sick, but he wants me to BE his mom when he is sick!


7 Cathi June 6, 2012 at 11:43 am

I prefer my husband home 24/7. We do everything together including going to the market, doctor appointments and going for walks. We are however grandparents without any children living at home. Oh! And we’ve only been married 12 years! I think that makes a difference.
When I’m sick I like to sleep. Lay in bed and sleep it all away, however…when my kids were all home and growing up I simply went on with life because as we all know…moms really don’t have time to be sick. ;D
Be well Gabby!! Sending heartfelt well wishes your way!!


8 Des June 6, 2012 at 11:46 am

No. I’m the worse when it comes to a sick spouse. I tend to ignore him and hope that the sickness goes away fast so he can get back to helping me!! When I”M sick, the whole world needs to stop. Stop, pay attention to me and wait for me to get better. And bring me toast.
See? I’m worse.


9 Mary-My Life in Scotland June 6, 2012 at 11:48 am

When my husband or son is sick that is when I feel the most needed. I kick into overdrive and it makes me feel good to help. I get all my supplies out and ready for use. Keep ‘em sleeping and hydrated. Eat when they feel like it.

When I’m sick…nobody helps me! I crave chicken noodle soup and my mother when I’m sick. Oh, and lots of sleep!


10 Aliesha June 6, 2012 at 12:29 pm

I am the same way about being sick! This is how it usually goes in our house – my husband gets sick, and I have to try to keep myself from rolling my eyes with ever whimper and whine. I am nice on the surface…usually…but inside I’m thinking, “Oh my gosh, it’s just a cold. Buck up!”

Then, usually within a week, I catch whatever he had and realize that he must have been feeling TERRIBLE. And he is the best about being sweet and sympathetic when I’m sick. How this has happened, time and again, I can’t say. You’d think I would learn my lesson and take him seriously after a while!


11 cupcakes for clara June 6, 2012 at 12:36 pm

I hope you feel tons better soon Gabrielle! I’m so glad someone else gets a bit frustrated with a poorly husband! In our house he’s usually the last to catch anything so by the time the kids & me have had it, I’m fed up of looking after sick people! Poor thing!


12 Sasha June 6, 2012 at 12:59 pm

I’m glad you’re feeling better! I just had an aha about myself regarding this same issue with the travelling or unavailable husband. My husband was out of town and I spent an entire evening cleaning the house after the children went to sleep. I felt so productive and fulfilled. Then I imagined what it would feel like to have mopped floors and scrubbed toilets after a full day at work if my husband were at home. While he’s very industrious and actually does most of the cooking and at least half of the household chores, in the evenings he sometimes just stops when he’s tired and watches TV or reads. I know there is no way I could graciously clean the house if he were lying around resting, no matter how well-earned it might be. Isn’t that interesting? That my need for a feeling of momentary equity would take away from my ability to take pleasure in being productive when the mood and energy hits. Hmmmm. And he is the best nurse when I’m sick while I struggle with taking care of him.


13 Megan - So Inviting! June 6, 2012 at 4:54 pm

This is so true! I do the exact same thing! It is the best to wake up to a clean house after a late night of cleaning alone! I used to love it when I was little and my mom would surprise me and clean my room, it’s the same way now with the house… I just wish someone would clean like mom used to. Wait now thats me!!! Sometimes I think my husband knows not to come home at 6 when the house is crazy… things are so much better if he gets home at 9! Poor guy…


14 Ann June 6, 2012 at 2:06 pm

Totally know what you mean about when husband is not home vs home sick!

I crave hot soup and citrus too. I also crave continuous tea and junkie food too for some strange reason. Oh, and hot peppers.

Glad you’re feeling better : )


15 Pamela Balabuszko-Reay June 6, 2012 at 2:50 pm

Number one: A sick husband at home is NOT good. My reaction is exactly like yours.

Number two! Supreme that grapefruit that is cut the “wrong way”. Supremed grapefruit is divine!

Number three! Get better!


16 Julia June 6, 2012 at 3:58 pm

I feel similarly irritated when my husband is sick at home (which is rare), and I finally figured out why: At-home moms don’t get sick days. If I have a cold my husband, wonderful as he is, wouldn’t dream of staying home from work so I can rest. Thus I have to do everything as usual with the kids and house even though I’m a dripping miserable mess. So when he’s lying on the couch resting, I think it’s less about being mad at him and more about wishing I could do the same, if that makes sense. :)


17 Pamela Balabuszko-Reay June 6, 2012 at 7:35 pm

Amen Sister.
My husband is amazing. But when he is sick it is like having another kiddo in the house.
This is why I say every woman needs a wife. Wink. We usually know what another woman needs when the chips are down.


18 Jane June 6, 2012 at 4:35 pm

Hello, infrequent commenter and longtime lurker here.

This entry made me smile, because I never knew anyone who felt this way! I, too, am ashamed to admit that my husband is a hundred times more tolerant of sick me than vice versa.

I have a weird craving for cold canned mandarin oranges when I’m sick in bed. My mom would always set me up on the couch with a bowl of them when I felt sick, and tasting them as a grown woman still brings me comfort :)


19 juliagblair June 6, 2012 at 5:27 pm

I have a not-well husband at home all the time. I’m loving being a care-giver. I feel so in-charge!! I’m still looking for “Olive us!” tomorrow?
Hope so. Get well, Gabby dear. You’re taking care of many, many! Perhaps
one of your beloved guests left a bounteous germ! Love you all!


20 sue June 6, 2012 at 5:59 pm

oh my goodness. i TOTALLY get this. i always imagined it came from dreading the extra duty of taking care of another dependent, when what i wanted most was my husband to help me! also…i’ve always felt like my sick care was never a fair trade for his sick care. its been good to dive through these thoughts..i think it will help me be less resentful next time! =)


21 Nikki Fisher June 6, 2012 at 8:34 pm

Sympathy to you Gabi from here in the southern hemisphere where I am just coming through a cold. I blogged about this very topic a couple of days ago. I was wishing for a ‘go slow’ day and next morning I woke up sick – be careful what you wish for! I love both – sick and traveling husband – as long as they are both speedy, ie. quick recovery and quick trip away.


22 Jocelyn June 6, 2012 at 8:39 pm

Ha, I am so glad to know I am not alone in feeling that way when my husband is sick. I always feel guilty that even though I feel terrible that he feels bad I secretly want him to still be helping out. I am much better when he is traveling because I am mentally prepared to do it all alone. And plus then I don’t have to worry about keeping the kids quiet. Thankfully, my husband doesn’t get sick very often.


23 This girl loves to talk June 6, 2012 at 9:03 pm

ha! I had similar feelings when my husband is working from home or having a well deserved rest. My husband was bishop, and travelled for work and I think I handled things pretty well. However now he has been released he is home alot more and I have had to handle my irritated feelings! Now he is trying to give himself some deserved rest time (ie playing a computer game (which he didnt have time for for years!) or studying or watching some tv etc and I find myself getting so grumpy that he is now home but still not available to me! lol)

so obviously I fall into the latter category – though I wouldnt want a full time travelling spouse. Mine only every two weeks or so.


24 Chedva June 7, 2012 at 12:24 am

I feel the same way when my husband is sick. It’s also really hard for me to see him this way, it’s so unlike him. When I’m sick I don’t crave anything, even the thought of food makes me nauseous (which is rare!) and I’d eat maximum a plain toast and drink something citrus-y (my family has citrus orchards and vitamin C can never hurt…)
Get well soon!


25 Gina June 7, 2012 at 2:53 am

Feeling like this in the Spring just doesn’t fit reality, does it? Take care of yourself now and actually rest. Easier said than done but a few days (hours) of rest will save your weeks of walking in a fog. I am eternally guilty of ignoring my symptoms to “do” but, know rest works! I wish it for you and am glad you have such a great husband!

I kid my husband that he’s absolutely not allowed to be sick and has to be super man. I, also, feel that our life is planned around two healthy adults and whenever one of us is brought down with a big, I suddenly realize the energy & work necessary for every day.

My personal best tips: I am positive that when I practice yoga regularly, I catch fewer colds or have shorter illnesses — it’s amazing. Real chicken broth; ginger + lemon squeezed into fresh orange juice, water and rest… Feel better soon!!


26 hyzen June 7, 2012 at 8:14 am

Hmm, I get irritated when my husband is sick, too–but that’s because when I’m sick, I still generally have to go to work all day AND end up having to take care of the kids, dishes, meals, pets, the house, etc. My husband works long hours and doesn’t have a lot of flexibility, so everything still falls on me. I can feel so miserable and all I want to do is collapse in bed, but I drag myself around and get the essentials done. But when he gets sick, he calls off work or goes home early, sleeps all day, then wants to lay around in the evening and expects me to take care of everything, even if I’m sick too! If I bring it up, he says that he thinks he must be sicker than I am! Argh. It doesn’t engender a lot of sympathy. And it brings to mind this blog post, which is hilarious:


27 Mel McCarthy June 7, 2012 at 9:51 am

Hope you feel much better very soon! That has to be the most gorgeous grapefruit ever. When I’m sick I crave tea made with fresh ginger and lemon slices and honey. You’d be amazed at the energy kick it gives you.


28 Shawna Greenway June 7, 2012 at 11:38 am

I am the WORST at being sick! I am crabby and just want everyone to leave me alone and I don’t appreciate my husband, who is the best nurse in the world but a little too attentive. I work from home so when he’s sick it’s irritating because he’s just lying on the couch playing games on his phone when he should be sleeping but then I feel like his mother if i scold him for it so I tend to stay in my office in the garage when he’s ill. That sounds so horrible, doesn’t it?? LOL

I crave my mother’s chicken and rice casserole when I’m sick. Chicken breasts, Minute Rice and Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom soup. Such a 1950′s dish!! I find it truly disgusting when I’m well but I could eat a whole pan when I’m sick.


29 Dee June 7, 2012 at 4:42 pm

I prefer a traveling spouse, for sure. Are you familiar w/ the “man cold”? Check out the video on youtube, too funny. Feel better, Gabrielle.


30 kalanicut June 8, 2012 at 12:37 am

Can’t take the smile off my face. LOL. Much prefer travel. Apparently I was blessed with a super high tolerance for pain according to doctors and when I’m sick I just want to be left alone. Unfortunately that also means that I have a low tolerance for complaining about minor aches & pains and constant demands. The little one is a piece of cake when sick, it’s the bigger one that tough. ;)


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