Last night I had a dream about waiting tables.
I waited tables off and on for about 5 years of my life. Mostly at the Olive Garden. Back when it was still a yummy restaurant to eat at. But, why do I keep having dreams about waiting tables? It’s been almost 11 years since I quit. This one was weird. Chandler was there. Hanging out with the cooks in the kitchen while I raced around waiting tables. Thank goodness it was not a real dream because I don’t even want to know the kind of damage a 15 month old can cause in a restaurant kitchen. Some days I think I might like to wait tables again. I was pretty good at it. And it was cash in my pocket. Something I could use again these days.
So there’s a little peek into my mind.
Here’s another one. I am a germaphobe. Now, people throw this term around loosely these days. So, usually, when I tell people that I am, they just kind of chuckle, and don’t get that I’m being serious.
It all began in 2006 when we lived in Philly. I was pregnant with our first. I saw 3 people vomit in public in front of me within a 3 month time period. That’s where my germaphobia started. I don’t remember being “scared” of getting sick as a kid, ever. Although I had other anxieties at the time. And, even as a young adult, it never really bothered me. Now, I believe that I have a true problem. And, it can be paralyzing.
Let me give you an example. This week, I called my Mom and she mentioned that she had a stomach bug. No big deal. She lives on the opposite side of the country. Then, that afternoon, we got a package from her. I didn’t want to open it. I was scared it had germs in it. Literally. So, I called her. And, I didn’t want to ask, because most people find my worrying annoying and ridiculous. But, I did. “How long ago did you send this package?” She said it was over a week. My Dad laughed and poked fun (because he knows I’m serious, but still says he reserves the right to make fun of me) So, I let my kids open it and rummage through it like wild heathens.
Even while you’re reading this, you probably think I’m writing this as a humorous look through my slight phobia. But, it really has come to affect my everyday life. That’s how you know it’s a true problem.
Now, I have 3 kids and they get sick. It’s inevitable. But, it has come to affect me so much that I frequently have trouble sleeping because of it. I imagine I heard a cough (“Could they be throwing up!?) Sometimes I even go in to check. I dread the night time in general now. I just know there is going to be a fever, someone throwing up, or some other ailment that is going to pop up every night. I’m convinced. Usually there isn’t, but that doesn’t stop me from worrying about it. Every. Single. Night.
I scrutinize every morsel of food they eat. If they don’t eat enough, I just know they are getting sick. And, the worst part is that my kids tell me their tummy hurts every. single. day. It kills me.
I hear a kid threw up in class and I start firing questions like a mad woman. “Where you sitting close when it happened? How much did you play with them today? Did you wash hands before you ate anything? Were they back at school today?” and I count down the days until I’m sure we are in the clear and they didn’t catch it. I don’t like knowing when someone has been throwing up or sick, yet I have to know.
When I was in Philly, my sister got really sick. I started taking airborne like a crazy person. I felt like I was getting sick everyday for a week, until I realized that the airborne may have in fact been making me sick. I was taking the recommended dose, but you can definitely take too much of that stuff. When I finally stopped taking it, I started to feel better.
Recently, it has affected me when going out to eat, too. If I sense any abnormality in my food, I lose my appetite. I still like going out to eat, but can quickly decide my food is not edible based on anything really.
When a child does get sick, I turn into a different person. I literally can’t sleep. I eat very little. My heart starts racing. I start crying at some point if there is vomit involved. The last time my kids got a stomach bug, I lost 10 lbs. While I could definitely stand to lose the weight, it is still not the right way to lose it. This is not good for a mom that has 3 small children. I need help.
This past week, we went to the Children’s museum. It was awful. Sure, my kids were having fun, but I wasn’t. The place was packed, and now that Chandler is walking/crawling everywhere, I was just uncomfortable the whole time. All I imagined was the germs on every surface. I noticed the little boy in the elevator that was coughing. In my mind, every kid was a walking germ. I couldn’t relax and I wanted to leave. I frequently don’t go to places like this because it makes my skin crawl and I am convinced we are all going to get sick. We didn’t.
I know that I need therapy. Or drugs. Or both. But, I keep telling myself I can work through it. Because when the illness of the hour is over, I’m fine. And, I look back at myself overreacting and I think, “what was the big deal!?” Yet, when I’m in it, I can’t handle the stress very well. And, I like to think I can handle it a little better each time. But, I usually don’t.
I did manage to take a few cute pictures of my little Chandler. He was all over the place, and I loved watching him try to walk. He especially loved pushing the little lawn mower and shopping carts. Too bad he licked some fake food. *shivering at the thought
I was originally going to post about how I hate watching other moms who look all perfect and are looking ME up and down at places like this and how I feel dumpy and inferior, but I’m going to focus on being positive. Just this once. Have you checked out this Mom’s blog? I love it. It’s all about not judging each other, and focusing on the good of other moms. Who’s tired ot he mommy wars?? I am. Check it out.
What are your fears as a Mom? Tell me I’m not the only crazy one out there….but it’s OK if I am.