A Sick Child and a Busy Mamá


It’s just a little past midnight and I’m sitting on my bed, laptop on my lap, in a dark room trying hard not to wake up Camila who’s sleeping right next to me. I can hear her heavy breathe and feel the warmth of her body as she battles the fever that has had her down all day.

I really should be asleep too. My throat is hurting, my body aches from tending to her all day while trying to get some words up on emails and social updates that must get done porque así es la cosa.

Pero no puedo.

I know tomorrow will be another long day of staying home with Camila because I’m the one that has to. I’ve always been the one that has to, even though I’m the one that has been building a business for the last 5 years. And as soon as I typed this I know it sounds like a complaint, but the truth is that this is exactly what I asked for.

See, being an entrepreneur means that all the lines between business, family and personal time are always blurred, with occasional windshield wiping movements that clear a path here and there. But in general, you create this life because you want that sense of freedom, of not responding to anyone but yourself and your team whenever you have a sick child, a family trip, a school event, or a day you just need to disappear from it all.

You create that freedom but it comes with a high price. It means a level of multi-tasking that I keep reading is nothing to boast about, but to actually be concerned with. It also means that the time you take “off” is not time that just erases the responsibilities associated with it — ¡para nada! You just end up putting in the extra hours or minutes you can squeeze in anywhere.

Y aquí ando en esas. I just finished a post for Babble and sent it to my editor to review. I responded to a few emails from my many inboxes to make  room for more mañana. I had to cancel an event at Disneyland for tomorrow morning that I really wanted to attend because the announcement has to do with a topic about family and kids that I’m passionate about. But after my girl’s last round of 102.5 fever and vomit at 10:30PM, I had to make the executive decision to cancel, but was able to get Lidia to cover for Latina Bloggers Connect and get me some pictures. All this so late at night. And there’s more to do, but I won’t. So I came here to ramble and make myself feel better by sharing.

We must share. This parenting and being a professional woman act is not easy. My husband is amazingly hands-on and wants to be here in my place, but since he’s a freelancer he has to show up when he has a gig and now he has a gig. In fact, every single time Camila has been sick he’s had to work. I even had to cancel a business trip once because I had to stay home with her while she was sick. Funny enough, when I took her to the pediatrician today because her fever just would not go down and she was extremely lethargic, she asked me, “¿Porqué sólo veo mamás y no papás?” She herself found it odd that there was a waiting room full of kids and they were all with their moms.

My theory is that we are the ones that will do whatever we have to do to make sure our lives allow for us to be there for them. This is not a women versus men argument because I know my husband is always here for us. But truth be told, the one with the drive to make it happen and figure out how to “have it all” — as much as I hate that misunderstood phrase — has been me.

So I sit here, unable to sleep because I know soon I’ll have to wake up to check on her fever again, and knowing that tomorrow will be another exhausting day, but this is just how I created it to be and the rewards are much bigger than these sacrifices.

{Oh, let me tell you about that picture up there! I created it with the Waterlogue app and I’m loving it! Just watching the process of it transform an ordinary picture into a watercolor soothes me.)


  1. says

    I struggle as many other mamás do every day with this. I have to juggle two kids, work and even though Lucía is going to be ONE tomorrow she still doesn’t sleep through the night. Of course when she or Matías are sick I am the one with them and trying to get work done. My husband is wonderful but they don’t truly know what it’s like. He can only “focus on one that at a time” as he put which means handling two kids is impossible. Anyway, like you said, it’s not a complaint, we chose this, pero ayyyyyy no es fácil. Muchos cariños from DC…I’m FREEZING by the way.

    Maria Jose @verybusymama recently posted…3 Ways to Style Baseball Hats with MakerWearMy Profile

    • Ana says

      No es fácil para nada! My girl didn’t sleep through the night until way past her first year and that was HORRIBLE. I wasn’t working during that year and I’m not sure I could have been able to do it at all. We do so much because we can, for sure.

  2. Luis Tobon says

    Good morning,

    I am also at home with a sick little one. They are the only things that matter and we must be there for them. Luckily, I work with compassionate people and I am able to take the time off without any real issues. Part of me feels bad for taking off so many days but it must be done. I only worked 2 1/2 days last week and I may get close to that this week again. What is the point of working hard to be able to provide for our families if we are not there when they need us the most?

    I hope your little one recovers soon.


    • Ana says

      So many great points, Luis. You definitely are lucky to be able to take time off and be there for them. But amazing how guilt is still so powerful!
      Thanks for the well wishes, hope your one is on the mend.

  3. says

    Una madre que da vida. Not just once, pero otra y otra vez. By divine design, we as women were endowed with the power of giving life and being nurturers. I believe it is the way we were created and what a gift! So, yes we are the ones who are naturally there time and time again, not only because we make the sacrifice, but because we are nurturers. Our mother bodies allow us to give birth and our mother hearts allow us to nurture.

    • Ana says

      So beautifully said, María. Yes, it is in our nature, that’s why I’ve learned to not complain, porque a la larga, aquí es dónde quiero estar.

  4. says

    Oh, I’ve been there … of course. Everything comes to a standstill of our kids are sick. I’m really trying to practice mindfulness this year, 2014, in everything including parenting.
    And this was after I got sick last year, from trying to do it all. So far so good, but I know there will be times when I will have to juggle more. Hang in there and no, it is not only not easy but at a certain point, not desirable either. Besotes and speedy recovery for the little one!

    • Ana says

      Gracias, Lorraine! I feel the same way in that I have to be more present, especially when life comes to a standstill and just roll with it. Everything comes in waves and now we know that we need to gear ourselves up para las altas y bajas. Gracias por visitar!! :)

  5. says

    Ojalá Camila ya este mejor, aunque nos obligue a cancelar compromisos o trabajar tarde de noche es tanta la tranquilidad de estar con los hijos cuando más vulnerables se sienten y los vemos, no se sí podría salir de la casa si veo a mis hijas enfermas.

    • Ana says

      Ya estamos en el tercer día y mi pobre niña sigue igual, y ahora me pegó a mi! Así que me las estoy tomando leve porque ya no me queda de otra. Tienes razón en que al final es algo que nosotras queremos hacer y nos da más tranquilidad estar aquí con ellos.

  6. says

    Ay! I’m right there with you! I used to want this, to be with them whenever they got sick and not have to ask your boss and now I have it and I still feel it’s hard. It is good to share!! And it’s just how we mothers are made, we would give our lives and stop the world if we have to, en cambio the fathers, they would too but I think they stop to think and reason maybe, we just act with our hearts more, I don’t know, that’s me rambling…! Hope Cami gets better quick!
    Dariela recently posted…Abuelita’s Birthday: Wordless WednesdayMy Profile

    • Ana says

      Ramble along, amiga! I should change this blog’s name to MadreRamble! jajaja! I do think it’s just harder for them to manage their time like we do and, yes, they like simplicity. But truth be told, we are also control freaks and need to know we’re taking care of it all…so there’s that.

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