Lessons from a Stomach Bug

 My poor Bo Bear on Day 3 of the stomach bug.

My poor Bo Bear on Day 3 of the stomach bug.

Oh wow! Looking and seeing the last time I posted is just sad...December 6th. Three weeks ago today. I've tried so hard to get into a routine with writing and working on product but unfortunately I can't seem to find a good balance between work and home life. I digress. I envy the lifestyle bloggers who appear to have it altogether with their gorgeous photos, product and whit--I can't promise I will have any of those going for me but what I can promise is I'm going to keep it real. I'm a stay-at-home mom with dreams and passions but my number one priority, above anything I ever can accomplish or succeed at, is my husband and children (second and third only to my faith, of course). So three weeks...a lot can happen in a minute, let alone three weeks. These past weeks have been jam packed with one thing after another, hence, the fact that I've been MIA from our website; my dear sweet friend, Jenn, has an annual holiday market that I've been participating in when I'm available and this year I was able to, thankfully! It was a total success as I sold several candles, two signs and took a handful of pre-orders for miniature candles. This market was by far the most success I've had at one single event so I was definitely a happy camper and left there with a newfound boost in my creative mojo.

The following weekend my mom came up for a visit since she couldn't be here for Christmas. It was so great to see her, however, her visit was overshadowed with a death in Rob's family and the start of what was to become a vicious stomach virus. By the evening of when my mom left to go back to South Carolina, I was hugging the toilet bowl...as were Rob and Bo. Unexpected and not fun. The three of us found ourselves laying around between mine and Rob's bed and the couch bed for the next 2-3 days. I hated seeing Bo so sick--he's a little guy anyway but I felt like he was beginning to look like those sweet babies you see on TV who are skin and bones. I wanted to cry everytime I saw him just in a diaper. At several points during last week, he was lethargic--a limp noodle--just staring into space. Then, last Thursday night, 4 days after the bug hit us, we had to take him to the ER for dehydration. Rob and I had been on the mend for 2 days by then but Bo just couldn't seem to kick the bug. Thankfully it was a matter of giving him an anti-nausea medication so that he could orally rehydrate--after two more days of a bland/BRAT diet, he was back to his normal self. I can't think of any enemies I have but I wouldn't wish that stomach bug on them! Now after a week and a half, it has gone through 5 more family members, including my mom. There was a lesson I learned during the week of spoon feeding my 3 year old, racing said toddler to the bathroom to puke, putting cold wash rags on foreheads and rubbing backs--it was one of total gratitude. I've never been one to be good with people getting sick or anything medical related, I don't even like seeing my own puke, let alone someone else's; however, there was one day last week where Rob went to work so I was left at home with both kids sick and needing my attention. That day I had hoped to get some work done--whether it be sanitizing my house or attempting to make money with working on product...maybe even get a blog post done--but by the time one kid would be settled, the other one needed something. Normally I'd be feeling frustrated and defeated that I couldn't get anything done but that particular day, I just felt the Lord showing me that even though my household was a straight up hot mess, I was doing exactly what He had called me to do. Take care of my babies. My treasures. At the moment I had that realization, I babied my sick, helpless son a little more and held my fussy daughter a little tighter. It didn't matter that I hadn't posted not a single social media post on my business page in several days or that my website was looking like I had fallen off the face of the earth. The fact was my babies were sick and they needed their mama's undivided attention. So that's what they got.

Thankfully the bug came and went by Christmas and we were able to enjoy Callie Jude's first Christmas, without being sick. Every year we switch off holidays with my family--last year they came up for Thanksgiving and we were in South Carolina for Christmas so this year we stayed home for both holidays because of our big road trip back in October and were with Rob's family. I actually bought a tree and decorated it since we were going to be here. Since Bo has been alive, we've never had a legit tree. I wanted to start the tradition of buying a real tree but with us being down south every other Christmas, it didn't happen. Two years ago I actually decorated my art easel to look like a tree. It was made up of lights and garland so my 16-month-old at the time loved it and that's all I cared about. However, this year I decided to get my act together and I erred on the side of our budget and bought an artificial tree for $50. Growing up, I never had a real tree that I can recall so I always said when I grew up and had kids of my own, we'd get a real tree. Rob and I bought a real tree the year before Bo was born and that was the extent of our "real tree tradition"; after a few conversations with some family members this year, I came to the conclusion that I'd save our money by purchasing an artificial tree. I figure it'd be just as special to say that we bought the tree the first Christmas that we were a complete family--CC being here and making us a family of 4--and let the kids pick out an ornament every year. There ya go, our new family tradition! At the end of the day, Christmas isn't about trees, ornaments and all the trimmings but it does give me all the warm and fuzzies to have traditions with my kids that maybe someday they'll pass on to their families.

So here we are, two days after Christmas and five days before a new year. I'm excited for 2018! Lord knows what the new year will bring but I have that giddy pep in my step that reassures me that He is up to something great. Whether it be business successes, marital blessings, or just the fact that I'm living my dream of being a mom and wife, and that I'm able to stay home with them, and watch them grow and develop--I'm eternally grateful for what He's done thus far in my life and where He is taking our little family. Of course I have tons of dream and plans conjured up in my mind that I will attempt to bring into fruition but after years of struggling with control, I've finally given up in the best way that I can, and that is letting God be God. I'm too busy to try and take that role on anymore.

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