26+ Hours of Fever
“Breast-fed babies are such a blessing.” I posted on my Facebook Wednesday afternoon, “Because it takes longer than bottle feeding, they make you take the time to stop and rest and drink your water and focus on them. I know bottle-fed babies are a blessing, too, all babies are a blessing! But today I am especially thankful, because I am a workaholic and would probably have someone else feed the baby while I worked in the yard and miss out on this sweet time if I wasn’t breastfeeding. ❤️”
And I posted this picture:
I have been working hard this week uncovering my poor, neglected flower beds. They have spent the last nine years of my chronic pain when taking care of babies and basic housework was all my body could handle most of the time fighting their battles with the weeds. It has been thrilling to be able to get so much done. I feel like Mary from The Secret Garden, blessing the poor flowers I uncover as they have struggled for life against the weeds.
After working in the yard nearly all day, I was able to sneak away for a date night with my husband on Wednesday. We took the baby, of course, but he was really low maintenance as he happily teethed on the edge of my cold water glass and munched on French fries. He’s starting to eat more finger foods (he completely skipped puréed foods, he won’t even let you put them in his mouth), but I guess I’ve been letting him have too much lately because I felt a pain as I closed the car door when we got home later that evening.
“Wow, I guess that weeding worked my muscles more than I thought. I’m sore!” I commented to my husband. When I woke in the middle of the night with a fever and more pain in my breast, I realized my mistake: I haven’t been making sure my baby emptied my breast well enough before giving him snacks (easy to do since he is always popping off and attacking my plate) and now I had a clog and infection.
Thursday was a rough day. Thankfully, I had family to help get the kids to and from their VBS. I was feverish and shaky all day. My baby probably thought it was the best day ever, haha, as he got to spend most the day lounging with mommy and nursing as much as he wanted. I was able to get a few naps in when family took him to play, though, and took a very hot shower and soak in the tub which offered some relief from the pain.
I remember standing under that water, crying, and thinking, If I wasn’t breastfeeding, I wouldn’t ever have to deal with this… And then banishing the thought. And then thinking of Jesus.
In the garden He asked to be excused from the suffering He knew He had to endure, but submitted to the will of the Father. And though His sacrifice was much greater and more significant than mine, it is an example to us mothers.
If we weren’t mothers we wouldn’t have to deal with snotty teen attitudes. Or late evenings toiling over middle school math homework. Or toddlers trying to slap and kick us. Or mastitis.
But if we weren’t mothers we wouldn’t be able to laugh at inside jokes with our teens. Or marvel at their amazing artwork/music/athletic skills. Or celebrate breakthroughs in their schooling. Or feel chubby toddler arms wrap around our neck and sloppy kisses from their adorable little lips. Or get to sit and pause our busy day and take time to rub baby feet while we nurse.
The pros to motherhood outweigh the cons by so much, it isn’t even a competition. My last paragraph could have taken up an entire blog; just listing the positives of parenting those four stages.
Motherhood is such a blessing.
My fever broke sometime in the early morning on Friday. I’m writing this Saturday and it hasn’t come back, so I think I’m on the up-side of things. And though it was a painful and exhausting experience, I’m thankful for the reminder of just how blessed I am.
The babies are worth it, mamas!