To a baby with a flu

Dear baby,

I’m sorry you are so ill. It hurts to see you so dazed, worn out, inactive – well, for you, anyway, which probably means your fever’s making you behave like a normal baby instead of an infant mentalist, but I wouldn’t know.

You latch my breast for moments before gasping for air. You wake up every hour, every two hours to feed again. Little and often is all you can manage right now. I am tired but so are you.

I feel like transported back to your newborn life where you mostly slept or screamed. You demand to be in my arms at all times, hardly content even to be carried on my back.

So I get stressed worrying about the laundry and the dishes and at least a dozen other chores to be done around the house. You are unaware and unbothered about these things. You only know that I must hold you.

I rage against being pinned under your tiny, snuffly, sleeping body. I am trapped by your smallness, by your fragility. I couldn’t do this if I had more than one child to look after…

But I only have you. And I only need find solutions for us today. I stop to look down at your sweet lips and hot forehead. Your closed eyes make you seem to trust me since you’re so at ease with me.

If I would relax I know my peace could transform this moment. So I do.

I sip the rise and fall of you against me. I marvel at how you’ve tripled your weight since being born yet are still so connected to me. My mind tries to wrap itself around this mystery God has given me.

Instead of raging, I rest in your beauty. I kiss your cheek. I draw you closer. I too go to sleep.



  1. May 17, 2012 / 8:01 am

    Ah that’s really sweet Adele. I hate it when F’s ill – the very worst is if she isn’t ill enough to warrant a day off from the childminder’s and I know she’s feeling a bit under the weather without her mummy there to give her a cuddle if she wants one. Drink it in, these days will be over so quickly. x

    • May 17, 2012 / 12:12 pm

      That must be hard when she’s ill at the childminder’s, Molly. They do go so quickly. She’ll soon be a year. Where did that year go?

  2. Katherine Carlisle
    May 17, 2012 / 10:31 am

    Thank you for putting in to words how I am feeling right now.  Exactly how I am feeling.  I have just started reading your blog after Kath Cunningham posted about it on her blog.  It’s great!

    • May 17, 2012 / 12:13 pm

      Hi Katherine! Thanks for coming to check me out. Glad you like my blog. I love Kath’s.

  3. May 17, 2012 / 1:17 pm

    You have made the ‘flu sound beautiful. Quite a feat. 🙂

    Such a lovely piece of writing. Sleep well both of you.

  4. Anonymous
    May 17, 2012 / 6:52 pm

    Aww this is so beautifully written. It made me slightly emotional *blows into her tissue* Amy is really clingy as well at the moment, but isn’t it nice to know that all they want is a mummy cuddle to feel better?

  5. liveotherwise
    May 17, 2012 / 6:54 pm

    Beautiful post. This time is so short.

  6. Martine Camps
    May 17, 2012 / 8:36 pm

    Adele, if she’s screaming like that then I think something has her uncomfortable/ in pain. If there’s any fever at all I suggest you take her to the doctor for sure. Oh I hope she’s already much better as I post this. Poor little Sweetie xx

    • May 17, 2012 / 9:32 pm

      Mummy, she’s perked up lots, don’t worry. And I don’t think the screaming is related to this. She’s been doing it for ages. Will email you. xx

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