Oh be still my heart…I have a normal, average, no-frills day today?  How did this happen?!  My firefighter is headed back to the station this morning, but that’s fine.  That’s normal.  He will be there today and tomorrow and will be home on Sunday.  Since we are meeting with our realtor Monday to talk about listing our house for sale, I figure I will spend today doing a full school day with the girls, then we can do some serious packing and cleaning tomorrow.  Sounds like a plan!

5:30 – My firefighter’s alarm goes off.

5:40 – My firefighter’s alarm goes off.

5:50 – My firefighter’s alarm goes off.

5:55 – My firefighter finally crawls out of bed.  The cat yawns and stretches her paws towards him in a pathetic display of support before closing her sly green eyes again.

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6:00 – My alarm goes off; it serves as his backup alarm.

I should roll out of bed too.  The cat will be all on her lonesome in our big, warm, cozy bed though.  Mmm…maybe I should just stay here and keep her company.  Oh, blast my conscience!  I actually like getting up and fixing him a couple eggs for breakfast or at least talking with him for a few minutes before he heads to work.  I’m up…

6:27 – Kiss my firefighter good bye as he heads out the door for shift.  I gather up some of his stuff and carry it to the edge of the porch to hand to him.  There’s damp chill in the air that makes me hug my sweatshirt to me.

7:30 – I’ve been doing school planning and some other stuff in the FFWife website for the past hour, so I’m wide awake and ready for school!  Why aren’t the girls rearing and ready to go like I am?  Ha!  I holler upstairs to them and tell them, “It’s school time!”  This is met with some groans and grumbles and not much else.

8:00 – Oatmeal breakfast for the girls.  Let the ducks and chickens out.  It’s not too super cold now.  It’s supposed to be a cool, but decent day.  Saturday is supposed to be awesome though, with a high in the upper 60’s and sunny all day.  Perfect!

8:30 – Start a load of laundry that I can hang on the line to dry later.  Round up the girls for school.

9:00 – The girls are finally ready.  I have reassured them that our lunch date is still on as long as they focus, finish school early, and we can be done with school by lunch time.  This entices them to buckle down.  They all work intently and very well for a good two hours.

11:00 – Their focus factor is fading.  I remind them politely that we can only go on our lunch date after they finish school.  I hang the laundry on the line to dry and enjoy the peace outside, until one of the girls opens the back door and shouts, “She’s making noise and bothering me while I’m trying to concentrate!”

11:45 – The girls are complaining about being hungry and realize the tragic nature of my former promise.  My middle daughter shouts to my youngest, “Hurry up and focus!  Do you realize I can’t eat until we are all finished?!  This is torture!”  Not quite.


12:45 – They’ve finished school for the week!  Woohoo!!!

1:15 – We arrive at the BBQ place just in time to see the lunch crowd leave.  Good timing!  I’m not a huge fan of the food here.  It’s okay, but it’s not my favorite since we cleaned up our eating habits two years ago.  The girls still love it though so I promised to take them again.

I order a plate for each of the girls and figure I’ll just share with them because they serve a LOT of food.  I share a little off of all three of their plates, but it all seems super disgusting today.  I assume it’s just me because I don’t really like this food anymore, but my girls aren’t eating much either.  We have enough leftovers to pack some up and take it to the station for dinner for my FF.

2:30 – Drop off the plate of food at the fire station and warn my firefighter that it wasn’t tasty.

4:30 – Make dinner, throw it in the oven and play word spell games with my youngest until pet chores then dinner time.  After eating we snuggle together and I think I doze off for a bit.

9:00 – Firefighter calls to say good night and tell me he thought the food from lunch was awful too.  I assure him that’s the last time I’m taking the girls there.


6:48 – Wake up on my own.  Yay!  I’m up and excited about packing some stuff, getting rid of some stuff, and cleaning up for our realtor to come in a couple days!  I want the girls to wake up to a good breakfast, so I make them the gluten-free blackberry muffins they love so much.  I give the mixing spoon a quick lick to taste it before I throw the muffins in the oven.

7:20 – Take my coffee into the bathroom with me so I can enjoy sipping it while soaking in a bath, waiting for the muffins to bake and before the kids wake up.  Nice and peaceful.  I read while I’m in there because a good book and a warm bath always go together!

7:40 – A knock on the door and a tiny voice from the other side says, “Mommy?  Do you want to have a Mommy-Daughter morning?”  This is my 7-year-old’s code for, do you want to play a video game with me before the other girls wake up and steal my time alone with you?

“Sure, Baby.  I’ll be out in a few minutes.  I dress quickly in leggings and a long shirt.  I pull my hair back and I’m all set and ready for eating, playing then packing.

8:00 – I’m starting to feel a little icky in my stomach so I grab a muffin.  I figure I probably shouldn’t have tried to have coffee on an empty stomach.

8:30 – I’ve been playing the game with my youngest, but I pass the controller to my other daughter because I just don’t feel well.  I try to read for a bit.

9:00 – I tell my girls I’m going to go lay down because my stomach is bothering me.  Being sick never stops me, so they’re instantly wondering how serious it is.

9:20 – They must have used their iPods to text Daddy at work because he’s texting me now asking if I’m okay.

“Yes, just don’t feel well.  I’m laying down for a bit.  I think I’ll take a nap and see if it goes away.”

“Wow…you really are sick if you’re sleeping in the daytime.”  Maybe.

9:50 – Give up trying to sleep and call to my daughter to bring me the bathroom trash can to keep beside my bed.  Wow…I haven’t felt like this since I was a kid!

10:15 or so – Finally fall asleep with the trash can beside me.

11:50 – Wake up to hear the girls watching movies in the living room and fixing themselves something for lunch.  I call my FF and tell him I’m feeling much better.  I’m going to hang out with the girls and start packing.  I get a text from my daughter in the other room saying she wants one of these when she’s 16…

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12:10 – I was up for a few, but I’m back in bed now.  Ohhh…movement makes me want to vomit.  Thinking makes me want to vomit.  Talking makes me want to vomit.  I’m cold.  My hair is hurting.  My skin on my back is starting to tingle.

1:00 – The girls have been texting again because my firefighter calls and asks if I need him to come home.  He says he can take a sick day to take care of me.  He feels horrible that I feel so sick and he’s not home to help.

I consider this offer, but I don’t see any reason for him to come home.  Truly.  What would be the point?  The girls are old enough to take care of me.  They’ve brought me water and the trash can today and I haven’t asked for anything else except peace and quiet.  They’ve given me that too.  If the girls were still young and couldn’t fend for themselves then sure, come home for them.  But they’re plenty old enough, smart enough, and skilled enough to be just fine.

I tell him to stay at work, but thanks for the offer.

He says, “Good enough.  I’ll call you later.  Call if you need anything.  Love you.”  I fall into a queasy, fitful sleep.

5:00 – I wake up to the sounds of the girls doing pet chores.  The sun is sinking and I haven’t packed the first box or done even the slightest bit of cleaning today.  Uggghhhhh…my stomach!  When will this end?!

5:10 – I talk to my FF and tell him I’m worse, but everything else at home is fine.

5:15 – I emerge from my bedroom and cross the hall to the bathroom.  As I pass the kitchen, all the girls stop what they’re doing and stare at me like I’m a vision to behold.  I shut myself in the bathroom and kneel on the tile floor.  A knock on the door makes me jump, which is not at all good for my stomach.

“Are you okay, Mommy?  You don’t look so good.”  Um…thanks?

“I’m okay.”

“Are you throwing up?”  Why my child is asking me this, I don’t know.

“Not yet…”

5:17 – Yet!  Yes, this is it!  It’s coming….ahhhhh!!!!  I haven’t thrown up since before I had kids!  This SUCKS big time!  Where does all of that come from?!  I’m pretty sure there are food items in there that date back to Wednesday.

5:20 – Seriously?  It’s still coming out?  Holy Lord Almighty, make it stop!

5:25 – Blowing my nose, I finally emerge from the bathroom with a scratchy throat and ask my daughter for a glass of water.

5:30 – The bright side is: my stomach feels great!  Empty, but settled.  This is the best I’ve felt all day.  I try to lie down again, but I’m wide awake and bored.  It’s movie time for me.  Curling up in the recliner, down blanket covering me, we watch some Hell On Wheels.

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6:30 – There’s a knock at the door.  Really?  After dark?  On a shift day?  When I’m sick?!  This stinks.  It is a little girl; a close friend who moved out of town but comes back to visit her grandparents (our neighbors) sometimes.  Surprise!  I ask the girls if they can play at her grandmother’s house today because I’m not up for company.

8:30 – I call to see if they can walk my daughter back over because I’m exhausted and need to go to sleep, but not until she’s home.

8:45 – Tell my FF good night and I’ll see him in the morning, hopefully feeling better.

I blow the girls kisses from across the room and hope they don’t get whatever I have.  I’m incredibly exhausted, weak, and tired.  My skin still aches and my hair still hurts.  Food sounds repulsive so I’m content with no food.

9:00 – I say my prayers and wonder what I caught that could have knocked me down so hard.  Salmonella from making the muffins and licking the spoon this morning?  Stomach virus from I-don’t-know-where?

I’m Mommy.  I never get sick.  And when I do get sick, no one else ever notices anyways because I’m still Mommy.  I keep doing all the Mommy stuff that Mommy has to do.  I can’t be sick.

But this time, God had other plans for me.  I was sick and He made sure I rested.  Let’s hope tomorrow is better.

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Jessie -

A small town girl from Southwest Georgia who happens to value your marriage as much as she does her own. She is married to a firefighter who was a volunteer for several years, then transitioned into a career fireman the same month they married in 2008, and he is now a Captain at his full-time Department. They have two daughters, have been in the FFW family since 2012 and know marriage takes a lot of work, even when it's in the best seasons.