Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Co-Parenting-Sick Child

A few weeks ago, I received a call from the school nurse. My youngest daughter was vomiting in her office and she wanted someone to come and pick her up. I called Molly, my children's step-mom, and she had my ex-husband go pick her up from school. It was their day, so I remained at work, clacking away on my keyboard. I received a call from Molly. Cami had a temperature of over 103, she was still throwing up, and she was complaining that her throat hurt. Molly was asking what to do next and I could hear my baby crying, "I want my mommy."

A lump formed in my throat, and I immediately felt like a terrible mother. Working moms face one of the biggest challenges. We are expected to juggle our work and our family, without missing anything. You are expected to not miss a day at work by your employer, yet when you are not home with your sick child, the other mothers and teachers judge. Molly and I work together, regardless of who's day it happens to be.

When my daughter's fever kept rising, and she was crying for me, my heart broke. I wanted my baby. I wanted to take care of her, to hold an comfort her, to take her to the doctor, and to rub her back. I asked Molly if I were to leave work, if I could pick up my daughter. She said of course. I picked up my baby and took her to the doctor. I ended up staying home from work the next day. I took care of my daughter on both days, and neither day were my days, they were her dad's days. If we did not all get along as well as we do, they would have said no. I can't imagine what it would be like to hear your child cry over the phone, but not be allowed to come and get her.

We always try to work together in every way possible. This is one of the many examples of the benefits of co-parenting. Jeff and Molly understood why I wanted to take my daughter, even though it was not my day. My daughter was so happy that she had her mom all to herself while she was sick, I felt better being with her, and Molly was able to get back to work (she runs a business from home).

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