I was struggling to find inspiration to this week's prompt word "close" until last night when suddenly our plans for a relaxing, holiday weekend with friends changed into pulling an all-nighter with my sweet girl. My happy, playful, energetic girl had a great day and went to bed just like normal, only to wake an hour later with a bad tummy ache. I thought after some rocking, soothing and rubbing her tummy we had her calmed back down enough to go back to sleep. So I came back downstairs and snuggled up on the couch with my husband to finish watching a show. However it quickly became obvious that getting her comfortable and to sleep for the night was going to be a bit more complicated than that. A nice evening quickly turned into a long night of mommy rocking her baby girl just about every hour, cuddling up in the bed with her, putting her in the bed with us, and just praying as I held her close that she could get some relief and some sleep. As morning approached, it became more clear that this wasn't just a tummy ache… this was the beginning of a dreaded stomach bug.
Close is the last thing in the world you want to be when faced with the possibility of catching a stomach bug. So we started our Saturday by calling our friends and telling them to get a hotel room instead of staying here and to stay far away until we know we can come out of our self-imposed quarantine. Meanwhile, I started the well-known process of washing sheets and disinfecting everything in hopes that the whole family won't end up sick. But despite all instinct to stay far away from the germs, when my sweet baby girl looks at me and in her weak little voice simply says "Mommy?" I quickly drop everything to scoop her up, hold her as close as I can and try to take away as much of her discomfort as possible. As any mother knows, when your baby is sick, they just want you close and you want them close. You want to keep a close eye on them, looking for any changes that indicate they're getting better or worse. You want to be there before they know they need you to nurture them and nurse them back to help. You just want to be close to each other. You realize you will likely be under the weather soon, but it doesn't matter right now. Right now all that matters is being close when you're needed and wanted. Right now all that matters is that being close somehow makes things just a little bit better and lets your sweet child sleep a little more soundly. Sickness, no matter how simple, can bring the stark reminder that being Mommy to someone who wants you close means you will gladly forfeit a full nights sleep and you'll throw yourself right into the mix of the germs if it means making them feel better. Sometimes, being close doesn't make any sense at all but is the only place in the world that matters.