I’ve never been mistaken for a tough guy. I’m slight of build, avoid confrontation when possible and have a fairly low pain tolerance. These are attributes that most people would leave off their dating site profiles (except for little-guys-looking-for-love.com…ok, I just made that up) but I am who I am and I accept it. On a scale of 1 to 10 on the toughness meter, I’m probably about a 4.5 and that’s being generous. One thing I’m sure of though is that I am tough enough to handle my children…or at least I thought I was.
If you live anywhere that witnesses the change of seasons, you know that this time of year is prime cold and flu time. Here in the mid-atlantic/northeast, the bitter cold of winter is upon us as evidenced by the white stuff that covered my yard this morning and the frequency in which my wife and I use our remote start on the car (thank you technology!). If you have kids, you also know that just as the sun is guaranteed to rise each day, your home is guaranteed to be an incubator for the dreaded “common cold”.
Now despite my relative lack of toughness, there are some things I am proud to say I can handle such as running a marathon (done it twice) and in a few weeks, participating in the Polar Bear Plunge. These things help increase my rating on that toughness meter I mentioned earlier, but nothing makes that number plummet like catching a cold. So when I woke up early last week with a lump in my throat and a runny nose, the wife knew she now had 3 babies on her hands.
I suffered through several days of work; complaining to co-workers, requesting additional boxes of tissues, and responding to my wife’s text-message inquiries about how I was feeling with, “not so good” and a sad face emoticon. I even gave a half-assed effort during play time with the kids one night and promptly hit the sack just after 8:00pm. After several days of this life-threatening illness, my condition was upgraded from critical to stable and I felt I was on the mend. Despite my efforts to keep the germs away from the kids however, it was inevitable that the outbreak would spread…and spread it did.
By the early part of this week, both Izzy and Jake were showing signs of the cold. The wife and I prepared ourselves for several nights of sleeplessness, increased levels of crankiness and the possibility of some diaper surprises (parents out there, you know what I’m talking about). With the exception of a slight fever however, these symptoms never really showed up. Instead, we were graced with the usual antics of “Iz and the Jakester” in all their glory.
My mind couldn’t comprehend what I was seeing. “How can these kids be so happy, so full of energy, while being sick at the same time?” DOES NOT COMPUTE! When I’m sick, I feel like a grizzly bear that’s just come out of hibernation and is subsequently shot in the rear with a tranquilizer dart. When they’re sick, they look like the pictures you see above and below.
While I sat there watching Izzy spin around in circles with one sock on and an empty milk cup in her hand, I wondered how it was possible that my kids were tougher than me. At one point, Jake shot me a look that said, “Man up Dad! It’s just a cold.” Izzy followed it up with a comment in Infantese that loosely translated, meant “C’mon Pops…this is how we roll. Can you hang with us?” I felt my toughness rating dropping like a rock. I thought about “showing the kids whose boss” by banging out a few push ups but moving from the couch to the floor seemed a bit excessive. I mean I’m still recovering after all.
So it’s been about a week and a half now since the first symptoms reared their ugly head and I am still fighting the remnants of a cough. The kids meanwhile, have shaken off their sickness like my dogs shake off the falling snow. Hopefully their level of toughness sticks with them as they grow and they take after their mom rather than me. If not, I feel bad for my wife as she’ll be stuck taking care of babies for a very long time.
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I’ll take whatever they are eating of breakfast, lunch and dinner!! It’s crazy how kids can recover so quickly. I am still trying to get over my cold. If only I could get a little of their energy
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Too funny! When I taught day care I often wondered how the common cold could have such a magical effect on little ones. It is like the endless supply of radioactive colored snot they produce is matched by their endless supply of energy.
They always shared their germs with me (sharing is good right?) and I just wanted to raise my white flag (tissue) and have someone tell me it was nap time!
Great post into the insight of our little loved ones!
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Thank you all for the incredible support and feedback for this post and my blog in general. Being Freshly Pressed was an awesome experience and I hope all of you get to experience it as well, if you haven’t already. Can’t wait to tell you all about my trip to Duke this weekend. Look for a new post soon!
Children are amazing and just when you think you’ve seen
everything they go and surprise you all over again.
I’m convinced that colds are 50% physical, 50% mental. When
we’re kids, we WANT to get better as quickly as possible. We want
to get back outside, with our friends, and build forts. We want to
get off the couch, even if that means just to play video games or
work on puzzles. We want to get back to being active. Now, when
we’re adults…suddenly when we’re sick, we want rest! We WANT
someone to take care of us, and would love a week off from work. We
crave time on the couch, warm soups, and chilled popsicles. We
want…nay, NEED to have someone pamper us. We cling to our sick
days! We can always learn so much from kids, and it seems like
you’ve capitalized on that idea with your blog. Awesome post. I’ll
be sticking around to see what else you publish, Jim!
I HATE COLDS so I can completely understand how you are
feeling. The bear metaphor was so original, but at the same time
hit the target with laser precision; i think I might just make a
note of it, to avoid awkward situations. (Ever tried to explain
symptoms to someone?)
ali önder said:
perfect thank you soo much admin.
Lego 4842 said:
MY kids are definatly getting stronger than me – he is only
5and a half! Kids are amazing when they get sick – nuerofen and 30
min later they’re back to themselves! Why can’t adults be like
Luis Munoz said:
what a great blog. do check mine out..if your interested in
alternative and electronic music…of the independent persuasion ,
peace ! https://wordcreationsss.wordpress.com/
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( I think we’re born with lots and lots of strength and
then we lose it as we get older … 🙂 ) Thanks for sharing. Now
you know how they roll! Congrats on being Freshly Pressed.
I think that everyone else may think it was a cold but you
and I know that it was a super-virus. You valiantly took on the
worst of it to spare your children and as a woman I can tell you
that viruses don’t affect us in the same way. Keep on fighting the
good fight and take care of that lovely family.
The pics are really cute…. 🙂 Enjoyed reading…. 🙂 Kids
are definitely so so so stronger to grown ups… and energetic
too…. and the only way by which we can equal dr 50% is by living
the life of a kid… 🙂
I think sometimes kids, especially when they’re younger,
don’t know that being sick means that you can take time off of
school, work, etc. because for me I made sure to try and get a free
day from school when I got sick. It was the best thing about being
super sick was staying at home, vegging out, updating myself on the
newest cartoons. Nowadays nothing keeps me from work, not a cold,
not an injury, but it still makes me feel pretty annoyed to be
sick. Plus, I think that kids just have the energy to power through
that stuff pretty well.
Awwww… some kids have that energy about them.. you are
blessed… I have seen some kids that when sick…. lets just
say…. there is nothing to brag about there… LOL! BTW you kids r
Hi Gosh the similarities. Its also the same in my home Men
with a capital M are just overgrown kids. Anyways it feels good to
be spoiled sometimes cause the rest of the time the onus is on you.
Enjoy the cold while it lasts …by the way fresh chicken soup is
guaranteed to get rid of it in a day or two so if you don’t like
that idea don’t tell the wife I said so. With a sprinkle of pepper
and a squeeze of lime.
Joy Of Jessalin said:
Great blog! Wish you all the best filled with love,
happiness, and good health for you and your family. Honestly, the
only reason I clicked on this link to your blog because I was
thinking about how I want to be stronger emotionally and physically
and I love kids. Kudos to an appealing headline for your post.
Notes Along the Path said:
You made me smile at the memories and laugh along with you. Thanks!
interisting. nice to read this note
yudi wahyudin said:
He’s cute… hope he’s going strongger some day!
by the way nice blog
the bizzle in the pizzle said:
i wish you and your kids ‘get well’ for now, and a life in
good health, but remember these words of wisdom: small kids – small
problems. i didn’t forget it, nor the person who warned me, some 15
years ago. i’ve long admitted it’s true.
Wow. It felt like I read this post in just a minute. You’re an awesome writer. Great article.
Butterfingers for Breakfast said:
Great post!! Forwarding to my husband 🙂 Good luck with you’re 30 before 30 list. I’m hitting 30 this year… dunh duhn duhn. I’m thinking about making a bucket list too. But for now I have two big new years resolutions to keep so I’ll stick with those!
I noticed your blog under “fastest growing WP blogs”, so I
stopped in. Very funny post. Keep up the good work. Check out my
blog for a few ways to monetize off of your blog. This may sound
like spam , but it is not.
kids generally have a lot more energy than adults!
Wonderful post! Congrats on being freshly pressed as well.
Children are amazing! Just about every adult I know falls
to pieces when they get a cold but a 4 year old? Bring on the
When I get sick, I just sleep a lot. Not a whole lot else
for me to do. When my husband gets sick, he pretends he isn’t, and
won’t let me give him any medicines. And he usually won’t call out
of work. He’s a tough one. I don’t have any children, but I do
remember being a child and being full of energy when I was sick. My
mom would never let me play. “You have to rest.” and “Playing will
just tire your body out, and it will take longer for you to get
better.” Like I cared, I played while she wasn’t home. Some of my
favorite watergun rooftop sniping happened while I was sick. (If
she knew I did that, she’d come to my house and kick my butt for
I read this aloud with my wife and we really enjoyed it
very much. I hope in the future I can come up with cute
publications like this.
Great post. And yes, little ones are resilient and energetic beyond all reason. I look at my 18 month old grandson (while he is sick) putting out more energy in one minute than I do during the entire day. I need a nap just watching him.
Wow. Listen to all these women bust on their men about being a baby during bouts with sickness. Well, leave it to me to set them straight.
Yes, we are babies. Yes, we turn into mush when a cold knocks us down. But there is reasoning to our madness. Its a macho thing. Before you ask “how is it macho to turn into a sniveling baby when you are sick” – it’s not. I don’t claim it to actually be macho to be a baby when we have a sniffle. What I do claim is that Men are generally considered the dominant sex and when something as small as a virus knocks us on our asses, it is a stark reality check. It turns our strong bodies against us which is a huge knock to our fragile egos.
I fully admit that I am a useless husband and father when sickness enters my system. Yet, when my wife is sick, she is superhuman and (for the most part) still goes on with her day with little difficulty. I think it is because Women have this gene inside them which doesn’t allow sickness to completely damage their egos (and, in turn, their bodies). Men, however, see a little snot come out of their nose and their fragile egos are damaged and are generally (if not fully) incapacitated. I’m sure everyone has heard of mind over matter, well, this is my little theory. The mind of a woman does not allow her to be completely down and out while the mind (and ego) of a man is such a finely tuned machine that anything out of the ordonary shuts down their bodies.
Or, maybe we just like it when our wives cater to our every need, yet when it comes to catering to our wives, they simply don’t need it (even when they are sick).
Nice post Jim – you wimp
I was sure you would have something to say about this. At least you didn’t try to claim that you weren’t a baby like the rest of us. Now that I’ve been freshly pressed, you may have some competition for my number 1 fan! Haha!
Ah yes, the man cold. An interesting phenomenon
10 manliness points to you for admitting you’re a big baby
when you’re sick. Take a cue from your kids and try spinning around
in circles with one sock on and one sock off – ya never know.
Congrats on being Freshly Pressed!
Thanks Lisa…that brings my manliness total to…well 10 I guess. Thanks for checking out the blog and come back for more!
LOL…………its very funny!!!!!!!!!!!!!1♥
This was so cute and humorous! I love that you can admit
that you are a wimp when it comes to being sick. Yeah, kids are
pretty tough. They’re probably going to prove that to you a few
times while growing up, dad. Better just get use to it. But I’m
sure they will always look up to you anyway. Hope you feel better
soon! Good post!
Thanks for the comment and for checking out the blog. Hope you’ll come back for more silly stories soon!
Children are God’s gifts of inspiration. Your family is
adorable. Guten besserung!
El Sheila said:
Haha. My husband is exactly the same. I tell people I have
2 babies in the house. Sheila
Then he knows what I’m talking about. And if he’s exactly the same, give him a break, it’s not easy being ridiculously handsome.
Strange Tributes said:
You participated in the POLAR BEAR PLUNGE?!?!?! O.M.G. I
need to do that like asap
Well, I WILL be participating in about 3 weeks. It’s January 29th here in Maryland. Looking forward/dreading it!
Good to see children like that. Hope I could be stronger
too when I’m sick. You can also visit my blog at:
If I remember my college courses correctly, I believe
physiology has a lot to do with the “toughness” of little ones.
Little ones are still changing, still growing. Babies can swallow
and breath at the same time while adults cannot do it. When my four
year old gets sick, he’s down for the count, but his two year old
brother slogs on as if not much is going on. That said, my two boys
are very different personalities, and the younger one is evidently
a toughie – he takes a lickin’, cries a bit and is off while his
elder brother will carry on for some time. Don’t beat yourself up
too much about perceived toughness. Just be glad your children can
get thru illnesses so well right now – they need it. It’s called
those kids are beautiful!!! Congrats on being freshly
pressed! Now i think you should move into the topic of ALL MEN
BEING THE SAME! Or would that be too boring. 🙂 I am sure after
being here, your germs woudl have run in all directions! x
I’d like to take some credit for the adorableness of my kids, but its probably more my wife than me. But thanks anyway! This freshly pressed thing is awesome! As far as the all men being the same topic…sounds like you can take care of that one!
Scooby Doo said:
Great post – cute kids. Keep up the good job!
Joe Storm said:
Us men when we get above 20, will feel VERY weak when we
get sick. I guess when we were kids, our energy outways the sick.
But as we get older, we do more things. I guess “Stress” of it
makes us “weak”? I Don’t know lol
All very good possibilities. I’ll take any excuse I can find to justify my “weakness”. Haha
electric spiel said:
They are adorable!
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Very funny, and very true. My husband is the same way, except he’s a big bear of a guy who acts like a baby when he’s sick. 🙂
Then he probably gets the whole grizzly bear analogy. Haha. Thanks for the comment and hope to see you back here for more!
I predict that when your wife inevitably catches this cold, she will barely blink an eye. If your kids are stronger than you, your wife is strong enough to hold you all in the palm of her hand. That’s generally the way it goes.
You are absolutely correct. In fact, I think she had the cold and none of us even realized it. She’s just cool like that!
Whatcha Find? said:
Great post, adorable kidlets. 🙂
Tori Nelson said:
FRESHLY PRESSED?!?! Woot Woot! Nothing like a little cyber fame to get you feeling better!
Thanks Tori! This is awesome! Lots of comments to respond to, sorry if I keep it short. Thanks for the support as always!
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Ditto the above entry! Grown men are all grumpy patients, and most act hacked off because they feel weak.
Your children are adorable! Sometimes mine would get hyper-happy from cold meds. Now my grown son is a very gentle soul, and strong as iron–a quiet, cool strength. You sound like you are made of very strong fibre–maybe just more evolved, aware and attuned than most cavemen.
Well, I do my best. Looking forward to the time when my little ones can take some medicine, even if it leads to bouncing off the walls.
The Simple Life of a Country Man's Wife said:
Very funny! Love it. And quite the cuties you have, too.
Why thank you very much! I like to think I had something to do with their cuteness but it’s probably all the wife! Thanks for checking out the blog.
I’ll take whatever they are eating of breakfast, lunch and dinner!! It’s crazy how kids can recover so quickly. I am still trying to get over my cold. If only I could get a little of their energy 🙂
It really is incredible, isn’t it. I would take what they are eating as well but for the Jakester, that’s breastmilk and I think that will just add to the feeling like crap.
hahaha all my wife friends agree that when men get sick or even a small cold they turn into big babies. i dont think it matters if you rank at a ten on the toughness scale… i think men dont get sick as much as we do…or well we are constantly dealing with the monthly friend and other womanly aches and pains.. this makes it easier to handle that pesky cold.
dont feel bad your not alone!
Hmm, womanly aches and pains…I’m going to stay away from that one. Thanks for the comment though and for checking out my blog. Hope to see you back again!
Tori Nelson said:
Thank God for a lack of “diaper surprises”! My house had a serious case of the cold funk this week, and after watching me and the Baby functioning normally (plus runny noses and coughs), Tom decided we had honed the skill of “Faking Well” rather than “Faking Sick”. He is still insisting we were just as miserable as he was, just a little better at lying about it 🙂
P.S. Avoid pushups at all costs. Big mistake!
Ms. Lynda you are exactly right! It’s not that Jim is weaker, but he has been socialized to engage in what is considered the male sick role (Parsons)- it’s a sociological phenomena that basically says that women have too many obligations (work, home, kids, etc.) to allow them self to lay on the couch feeling like crap. men however don’t see this as a problem and allow themselves to take the time out to recoup! This is why women have a higher mortality rates for basic illnesses like colds/flu. While Izzy and Jake may be in fact tougher than you Jim (we want our kids to better than us right?), they just have not been exposed to enough roles/expectations in order to carry out social norms.
Well thank you Dr. Steph. So what you’re saying is on top of being sick, I also have some social disease? Ugh, I don’t feel so good, I think I’m going to go lie down. Thanks for your expert analysis Steph…would you like a special section on my blog? We could call it “Ask Dr. Steph”
Well, Son, you’ve got a lot of company! Your father and the rest of the men in this world all have that one thing in common. No one is as miserable as they are when they get sick. Glad to see you giving my adorable grandchildren their just dues. Thank the Good Lord for all their energy.
By the way, you had all that energy way back when.