Papa is sick. Again. He seems to pick up more viruses than the rest of us (probably because he is out in the world daily) and he is hit harder and the illnesses last longer. It has been especially bad since he had the H1N1 virus summer 2009. I'm rather worried.
I'll be honest ~ in the past my first response to Papa coming down with an illness was anger. I got angry that he was sick again, that it was going to disrupt our day again, and that I would have to take on more than my regular share of child and home care again. I think one reason I felt like this was that as a homemaker and mother I don't get sick days. When I come down with an illness I have to manage by myself and often I would come down sick after Papa and still have to take care of everyone.
It isn't like this when one of my boys is ill. I am immediately concerned and do my best as Dr. Mom. I make warm herbal teas, homemade soups, and nourishing smoothies. I draw warm baths and add essential oils. I rub little chests with Winter Wonder Balm. Of course, I try to enforce as much bed rest as possible.
A couple of years ago I realized that I was irrationally angry when Papa was sick. He wasn't getting ill on purpose and he didn't enjoy being ill. He wasn't trying to do anything to me at all. Somehow I had picked up resentment and poor behavior toward an ill partner. Growing up in my childhood home my mother was constantly ill with various chronic conditions and my dad was a bit of a martyr about the household tasks he had to take on, plus as the oldest girl child I had to care for my mom and my siblings.
Since I had my epiphany I have tried very hard to change my attitude and to give Papa all the concern and love that he deserves when he is ill. I try to keep the boys quiet and will even take them out of the house to give Papa some true quiet for a restful nap. I fix him nourishing foods and herbals teas. I kiss his brow and tell him that I love him and want him to be well soon. Because I really do, and I know he does too.