Well friends, it's been a week! No sooner did I post about Ava being sick, that I blinked and the whole house was sick. Just like that, the stomach bug hit us and hit us hard. One by one we went down like dominoes, each of enduring a special variety of symptoms. Rather than rehash all the "excitement" of our week in great detail, I thought I'd choose to look at the upside instead. Because really, as bad as it was, it could have been worse!
Thankfully, Travis got sick and well again before we even knew what hit us. God was gracious in spacing out the timing between the two of us being ill, one of us was available to take care of the other and we tag-teamed it with the kids. Upside.
Although I NEVER want my kids to be sick, I always enjoy the opportunity to take care of them and to get extra snuggles when they feel badly. There is no one like your Mom when you don't feel good. Even when you're 32. We all needed our Mommies this week, and isn't it nice to be needed? Upside.
Having a 3 and 2 year old who are both sick, is an interesting test of patience. They don't totally understand what is happening and they are not big fans of a restrictive diet until their tummies are settled. However, we loved seeing the compassion and love for one another they displayed while the other was sick. Ava's nurturing heart was in full swing, bringing Carter his toys, asking if he was feeling better and just generally speaking lots of "oh, buddy" and "it's not fun to be sick, is it?" over him. So sweet. And Carter also reciprocated when Ava was down for the count. He ran to find her blankie, quietly let her watch all her "princess shows" without complaining and asked me "where's Ava at Mama?" every time she took a nap :) I'm grateful they are normally so healthy, but seriously, it's joy when you see glimpses of love between your kids when they are sick. Upside.
We didn't get the flu! Thankfully we just had a nasty stomach virus, but no dangerous strains of the flu and we are grateful. It's scary how many people are dying this year from the flu. I'm thankful we got our flu shots and didn't have to deal with something more scary. My hands are practically raw from washing them, but no flu over here yet (hopefully ever!). Upside.
Travis filled in for our Senior Pastor this week (who was out sick with his family) and although we were touch and go around here for the last few days, we made to Church today to hear him. The kids were fine, but I got sick on Friday so I was really the one in question. Thankfully I had a much better day on Saturday and just enough energy and grace to make it today. Upside.
We've been going through a little rough patch with Ava on Sunday mornings about going to her little class. I'm sure it will be fine but this morning I didn't have the energy to fight her on it so I brought her with me into the service. She's come a few times before, so she sort of knew the drill. I had no idea what she'd do with her Daddy on the stage, but I explained "the rules" and we went in. My girlfriend was waiting to sit with us and to our surprise (both of us) she had brought a bag full of princess goodies (stickers, notepads, books, etc.) to pass to Ava from her daughter and when she spotted Ava, she pulled it out. It was a huge blessing, and it helped Ava sit quietly and still through 2 services. Ava was able to watch her Daddy in action and got a kick out of hearing him mention her name and even tell a little story about her. Sweet, sweet, sweet. I loved watching her face. And when I picked Carter up from his class, they told me while they were on a little buggy ride around the Church, every time they passed a TV with a live feed (and they passed many) Carter would point and say, "Dat's my Daddy! Right dare! On da TB!" So cute! Upside.
On our way to Church this morning, on a bitterly cold morning, I marveled at how obedient my kids had been that morning, eating their breakfast and getting dressed when I asked them to so we could be early to Church. Sunday mornings are often stressful for me, trying to get everyone out the door by myself. This morning was so smooth and pleasant. When we pulled into the Church and we had a few minutes, I told the kids we were going to pray for Daddy. I wish I had a video to remember the precious things they prayed for their Daddy. It was such a pleasant and sweet start to our morning, a morning I was worried would be made even harder by me not feeling 100% and Trav being too busy to help me. I was wrong. Upside.
As we all went down, one by one over the last week and a half, I was continually amazed and thankful for all the friends and family who called us, checked in on us, prayed for us, even made a meal for us. Who really wants to be sick? And who really wants to be stuck at home, cooped up for days on end? While I wouldn't wish for it again, it was sweet to be reminded of how well we are loved and cared for. And it was a good reminder to return the favor to others who need be loved and cared for too. Upside.
Finally, as I sat down in worship this morning and felt the stress of this last week melt off my shoulders, I asked the Lord for a word from Him. And listening to my darling husband teach from God's word this morning, He gave it to me. Just what I needed to hear, just what spoke to my heart. It was a week I have no desire to repeat! Throwing up, cleaning up, messes galore, patience running thin, laundry, laundry, laundry...BUT, in the midst of our mess, the Lord didn't forget me and He spoke to my heart this morning when I asked Him to. Upside.
I'll be honest, I'm happy to be starting a brand new week, with no germs in sight! But sometimes, even in the hardest of circumstances, when you look at the upside, it's not so bad after all :)