Working at Home While the Kids are Sick

When you work from home, there are some things that can throw a wrench into even the most carefully planned work schedule. Even if you think that you have allowed for plenty of “wiggle room” in your schedule so that you can move things around if you have to, there will be things that arise which use up all of your planned for “wiggle room” and then some. When one or more of your children are not feeling well, it can be very difficult to stick to whatever work schedule you had planned.

I used to think that the “sick child” scenario would affect only the schedules of those work at home parents whose children were in school. After all, those parents are likely to plan to do at least some of their work when the kids are at school. Those of us with children who are not yet in school may have schedules where we work at night, after the kids go to bed. That is when I do my work, and also when I do household chores that I did not get to do during the day, for one reason or another.

Fortunately, my family enjoys good health most of the time. The kids are rarely sick, and for that I am very grateful. Unfortunately, both of the boys now have a cold, and it is affecting what they do during the day and at night. Blake, my ten month old son is taking it pretty much in stride. He is a bit fussy, and he is sleeping more than usual. My three year old, Dylan, is not his usual, energetic self. He has been going to bed early, but he sleeps very lightly and wants me in the room with him at all times. Last night, I did not get anything done. Tonight, I am doing things a bit differently and I have brought my computer into the bedroom. I am getting work done, and if Dylan wakes up, he can see me and know that I am there. I’m hoping that this situation can be our compromise, and that perhaps later in the evening he will sleep more deeply so that I can get up and do some chores without him waking up and becoming upset because I am not in the room.

While my boys are working their way through having a cold, I am navigating the ins and outs of getting work and house work done while I take care of them. Hopefully I will remember how I did it the next time we are in a similar situation. Do you have any tips or hints for sticking to your work schedule while caring for little ones who are not feeling well? I would love to hear about them.