Friday, September 25, 2009

The Gut Check

One of my babies is sick. B was home from school yesterday. He’ll be home again today with me. Strep throat. Yuck. The poor little guy, it came on pretty quickly. He complained of a headache when I picked him up on Wednesday after school. And when he came home, it was right to lie down on the couch-very unlike him. He didn’t even ask to watch a TV show. He was content to just rest there.

During the night, he came into our room and asked to sleep with us. No fever though. I decided to keep him home. He just seemed off to me. Throughout Thursday, he was sluggish and keeping his arms crossed over his stomach. His appetite was not the same. I kept asking how his throat felt. “It hurts a little where you would take my pulse.” he said. I believe that was his way of saying his glands hurt. I kept inquiring about the stomach and lack of eating and the arms. He insisted that no, all was fine. I decided to call for an appointment that afternoon. I knew he had strep. He always gets that stomach thing that goes along with it. And sure enough, I was right.

A mother’s intuition. I always seem to know when they are sick. I don’t know why. There are no logical explanations. Sure, there are some physical signs usually. But, I will say that there are physical signs when they have a cold or virus that I know is just that and doesn’t need any more attention. I can’t tell you how many times I have made appointments to take one of my children in to the doctor for something when T has thought it was too early or nothing to be concerned about. I’m not stating this to belittle him. I don’t know why, but that thing in my gut signals it’s time to go. Maybe it’s just that we know our children so intimately we can sense any minor abnormalities. Maybe we are programmed with a sixth sense about them for survival purposes. Maybe we just love them so much we never want anything bad to happen to them-so we rush in when we feel it.

My best friend from college, her five year-old son has Leukemia. It’s the good kind they tell them-whatever that means. They are fighting. He is doing well. She knew. She knew and told me that was what he was going to have before they even got the test results last fall. I’ll never forget that. I said to her on the phone that day “You have to be optimistic. It won’t be that. “ Her response “I already know it is.” She’s one strong mommy. I give her credit the world over.

I guess this is one more unexpected fact of motherhood that I never anticipated-to be so completely physically and emotionally bonded with another individual that you just have a sense about them. You know. Your gut tells you. You just have to follow it.


  1. I agree. I don't think anything could've prepared me for that feeling. The sense of something going on in someone else's little life and the strength to face whatever it is, on their behalf.

  2. I am praying for your friend's child! And I hope B is feeling better, too. I know when my kids are getting sick because a day or two before they are emotional wrecks, acting out, etc. Usually when this happens, a day or two later they come down with something. Never fails.