9 thoughts every working mum has when her kid wakes up sick on daycare day

Posted in Childcare.

The other day my poor little guy woke up a bit off. He had flushed cheeks, was very clingy and I just knew he wasn’t feeling crash hot. The thing was though, it was Tuesday and on Tuesdays he and his brother go to daycare because I work.

I faced the eternal dilemma every working mother does: Should I keep him home from daycare today when I’m unsure if he is actually unwell?? And if I do send him (with my fingers crossed that he will perk up during the day), will I just get that dreaded phone call an hour after drop-off to come and collect him?


Here’s what every working mum thinks when she has to go to work when she suspects her child could probably benefit from a day spent at home snuggled up with mum.

1. I think he can go; I need him to go 

I need to work today, I can’t call in ‘sick’ again. Sigh. Oh maybe he’s not that sick and can go? The teachers will send him home if he has a temp though *grabs thermometer*. Nope, no temp. So why is he so out of sorts?

Sick child mother's hand on forehead checking temperature - feature

2. Don’t be a bad mum. He’s sick. Trust your intuition

You know he’s sick. You can read him like a book. He’s a part of you. Trust that. He’s sick; he just hasn’t developed all the telltale symptoms yet.

3. Should I just dose him up on paracetamol?

Maybe his muscles are sore and he needs a little pain relief? Or – being totally honest here – maybe I’m just trying to mask his symptoms so he goes to kindy and I can work?

4. Oh man, I’m a terrible mother for thinking that

I’ll just check his temp. Yep, rising. He’s sick. Knew it. He needs me. He’s not going. I’m keeping him home with me. But I really need to work …  

Sick baby sitting in mother's lap - feature

5. I really resent society right now

Really, mothers should be able to care for their young, especially when they’re sick. Bloody society making us do everything, including helping to pay the bills and mortgage or rent. Stupid two income society. I want out. Let’s move to the sticks. 

6. Maybe I can work when he sleeps

OK, I’ll call in a half day and work from home when he’s sleeping and then make up whatever I need to tonight. Compromise. Good on me. I am a modern mother. I can and I WILL juggle everything (even if I don’t get to bed tonight until after midnight). 

7. Oh my poor little love

Oh no, he just vomited on me. Oh, my precious bubba I love you so much and am here for you. I’m so glad I didn’t send you to daycare. Yay me for trusting my instincts, but I’m sorry you don’t feel well. 

8. I bet he got this from kindy 

That place is a breeding ground for germs. Seriously, every time I drop him off someone has a sniffle or worse. Yeah, yeah, getting sick builds up his immunity, I know. But it feels like it’s every three weeks at the moment! He gets unwell and I can pretty much time it for three days after he’s been at kindy. We all need a break from the lurgy. But we also all need daycare, and so does everyone else – and the sick cycle just keeps going …

9. I’m so bloody tired

OK, I got through the day, my workload, and I didn’t completely drop the ball on my family. Go me. So what if we had frozen pizza for dinner? I did it. Now I just hope he’ll be well enough for daycare tomorrow. I have three deadlines and I can’t do the work-from-home-while-he-sleeps thing again. Oh hang on, I think kindy has a 24 hour exclusion policy after vomiting …  


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