I don’t cope well when my children are sick. It can really throw me – not just in terms of disrupting plans and the actual physical duties of checking on them and all of that. But it’s the emotional side of things; second-guessing whether I’m over-reacting or under-reacting. I suppose I’d always rather over than under-react when it comes to my children’s health, but all the same, I don’t want to be “that” parent.

Anyway, one of the boys had a definite tinge of pink in his urine last night, and while it was clear this morning, I’ll still be taking him to the doctor – because “blood in urine” is pretty much up there on the list of Things You Definitely Doctor For. Last night I wasn’t sure if I should panic and head to the night doctor service. In the end, I left the child sleep and made an early doctor’s appointment for him. He’s actually at the childminder now – as planned – and I’ll pick him up in an hour for the appointment. Actually, I think he needed some friend time, and I certainly needed some kid-free time.

But last night after it happened I felt pretty panicked. And then, because that panic couldn’t really go anywhere, I tried to blot it all out with too much chocolate and movies and staying awake way too late and doing nothing. Panic turns to paralysis when I feel there’s no logical action to be taken. I sometimes wish I was one of those “busy” people who puts their panic into cleaning house and getting organised and all of that. Instead I seem to shut down and not even do the stuff I’d already planned as necessary – like I couldn’t even unload dishwasher!

Lies. I could. I didn’t. On occasions when – through some kind of arcane and inscrutable magic – I manage to push through that huge blocking wall of NOPE!, then it actually helps to do some stuff and I might keep on going for a small bit and then sleep better afterwards.

Instead I’m borderline zombie this morning thanks to the useless hours of my life spent in an awake but shutdown mode which went kind of like this:

  • Child is sick! Blood! Panic! Must do something. (ohmigod my little boy!)
  • Don’t be silly, that’s an overreaction. Logic logic – if I take him to SouthDoc we’ll just sit in hospitals for the night and they won’t even be able to do anything without a sample which he won’t have til near morning anyway.
  • Google symptoms. Briefly reassured by most likely option.
  • Sit frozen and starting into space as my brain pinballs between wanting to do something and telling myself there is nothing to do now.
  • Beat self up about not doing anything productive.
  • Promise self five more minutes internet or food distraction, then I’ll do all the things.
  • All the possible other diagnoses that I read about start to seep through into my consciousness.
  • But what if …
  • Child is sick! Blood! Panic! Must do something. (ohmigod my little boy!)
  • Rinse and repeat.

Anyway, the miracle of sleep has broken me out of the worst of that cycle and now I only have to face my embarrassment over panicking “unnecessarily” and wasting medical time. If the child hadn’t drawn my attention to it, I never would have even noticed it.

Actually, because I have my period at the moment and we were discussing that, he told me about it because he thought he was having his period too! Which I can’t help but find adorably cute. Also, he seems to have a ridiculous stoicism in the face of pain. Once he’s been told a plan to deal with pain, he dismisses it, even when still experiencing it. I am nothing like that. Validating my pain makes me just want to talk whine about it more!


A day awaits. I’ve an appointment with my therapist next Tuesday. Good plan before return to work. I don’t have a feeling about that very much right now.

I had a moment when we were doing the grocery shopping yesterday where I contemplated a bottle of wine and visualised the detaching and fukital of drinking the whole thing that afternoon/evening. I didn’t do it. I know that I don’t even want to do it, but the thought was there. All the same, sometimes the thought is there to jump in front of a train or throw my phone over a bridge.

I learned from my brother-in-law that there’s a word for it in French: L’appel du vide – “call of the void”. Kind of appropriate for the draw of both the literal and metaphorical cliff.