Cold/flu season (with multiples)!
I honestly thought we were going to get through cold/flu season unscathed. Wrong! We got hit hard last weekend and have been battling this viral strain for the past week. Two urgent care visits were definitely not the way I had planned my week. I'm begging for that light at the end of the tunnel.
While I was browsing home remedies for sick children, I did find an article from Twinversity, that I found helpful, especially when trying to care for multiples. Find the whole article of the snippet below here.
Here’s some quick tips to help you get through both twins being sick at once…
1. Ask your pediatrician for a list of symptoms they feel are serious enough that your children should be seen. This will save you a lot of anxiety about whether to treat at home or bring them in, especially since babies seem to prefer getting sick over the weekend when you can’t call the office. You don’t want to be the mom who brings her kid to the doctor every time they sneeze or the one who lets them develop pneumonia before taking them in.
2. Have the basic home treatment supplies in your medicine cabinet at all times. Kids don’t give you 48 hour notice when they’re going to come down with something and you do NOT want to run to the store with sick babies in tow. I like to keep Tylenol, Motrin, nasal spray, and gas drops as well as a thermometer.
3. If there’s anyone in a hundred mile radius who might be willing to come help, ask! The number one thing sick kids want is to be held and cuddled and with multiple babies and one you, lap space is limited. Another set of hands to comfort them is very helpful, or if they don’t want to get sick they could come to help with dishes, laundry, cooking, etc. and help take care of you while you handle the babies. Take anything you can get!
4. When things are especially bad, I go into “survival mode.” At our house, this means we do only the bare essentials. We make sure everyone is fed, diapered, and as comfortable as possible. And that’s about it. Non-essential laundry will wait, cleaning can wait (unless there’s been a diaper blow out), we nix the home-cooked meals and opt for cereal, canned soup, or have pizza delivered. We lift the restrictions on TV time and give cribs the old college try, but if they need to sleep on our chests to get sleep, that’s what we do.
5. Take turns. If you’re lucky enough to have help, take 3 hour shifts so one person can eat, shower, nap, etc. while the other takes care of the babies. You will both feel much better for it. It’s exhausting and stressful when you’re flying solo, but knowing you will have a break soon will help you persevere and you will have the opportunity to recharge a bit.
The best advice I can give any parent, and especially a parent with multiples, is to set REALISTIC expectations and develop a sense of humor. You can’t control what things life (or your children) will throw at you, but you can control how you respond to it. Try not to set your expectations too high or you will be chronically disappointed. You will find yourself in many situations in which you know you’re going to laugh or weep, and I highly recommend laughing. Children are sensitive to their parents’ emotional state so if you’re upset and tense, they will be too. You will have unpleasant moments, but know that they are only moments and in the big picture of your children’s lives, it’s a fleeting thing you will look back at and laugh about some day, even if you can’t today. So the next time your kiddos are sick, grab some good movies, a cozy blanket, some children’s pain reliever/fever reducer, and your sense of humor. Because laughter really is the best medicine. And even if that fails, there’s always wine.
I especially agree with setting REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS. It's not going to be easy, and for sure it ain't going to be perfect. Sometimes when I get frustrated with screaming/whiney children, I tend to walk away from the situation. As long as no one is in danger, I give myself a minute or two of alone time. Remember that taking time for yourself during this rough time is crucial in caring for you and your children. That light at the end of the tunnel is near. Look for it!
Any other advice from people with sick multiples?