(Not quite my) Week off

Without wishing to sound too dramatic MY BABY had to go to HOSPITAL last week and is being treated for a CHEST INFECTION at home with ANTIBIOTICS.

I knew something was up when my friend, Noo, came over for lunch last Sunday with her gorgeous family and Zachy fell asleep sitting upright on her lap.  BEFORE lunch.  He perked up in the afternoon after a spoonful of Calpol and a small slice of red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting (from Selfridges food hall and to die for, thanks Noo) but still, he had a restless night.

By the next morning his cough sounded more like a bark and he was being quite moody with us, so we decided to keep him home from nursery.  The Greek God(zilla) organised to work from home and called YiaYia to help look after Zachy while he got on with some work.

By mid morning, it was apparent that Zachy was not very well at all, so both still donning their PJs, the Greek God(zilla) called our GP who agreed to see him right away.  She diagnosed a chest infection immediately but advised him to go to A&E to have him properly checked over.

In the cab to the hospital, the Greek God(zilla) called me.

“He’s not very well at all, we’re in a cab on the way to hospital…”

And then his phone cut out.


It is fair to say that I panicked.  I called his phone back every 13 seconds and each time it just diverted straight to voicemail.  I tried to call the doctor’s surgery to see if they could enlighten me as to why my son was en route to A&E, but the line was permanently engaged.  It was awful.  I felt sick.  I walked out of the office for some fresh air and burst into tears.

Fortunately, the Greek God(zilla) sensed that I would be absolutely losing the frigging plot by this stage and borrowed a phone from another parent in the waiting room, called me back and said that Zachy was fine but needed a course of antibiotics to clear the infection on his chest.

“Are you ok my poor baby?” I said to Zachy as I scooped him up in my arms later that afternoon

“Mummy…” he replied weakly.

“What do you need my darling?”  I asked him as I brushed his hair away from his face and covered his little cheeks in big kisses.

“Cake” he whimpered softly, obviously remembering the red velvet deliciousness still sitting in the fridge.

I knew I was being completely manipulated but I let him have a little slither of cake from my plate.  Maybe it was because I felt sorry for him being all sick and curled up on the sofa, or maybe it was simply my own guilt at not being with him when he needed me with him.  Either way, he was milking it for all it was worth and for the rest of the week I was entirely at the beck and call of a 2-year old.

With Zachy so unwell, it provided me an excellent opportunity to work from home for the first time.

Why I LOVED working from home:

  • not having to rush dressing, breakfast, teeth brushing, hair brushing, shoe tying, coat buttoning in the morning
  • enjoying breakfast, lunch and dinner with my little man
  • reading emails while having cuddles on the sofa with a mid morning cup of tea
  • the commute
  • free lunch
  • diminishing laundry pile

And, why I didn’t:

  • organising meetings for very important people in NYC while at the same time encouraging a toddler to spoon peas into his mouth instead of flicking them all over the laptop
  • formatting a Powerpoint presentation with Peppa Pig blasting out in the background
  • emails that started with “sorry to disturb you on your week off”
  • logging on at 7am/logging off never

The Greek God(zilla) seemed oblivious to the fact that he had returned home from work to a well looked after son, a tidy house (our cleaner had been),  a family meal in the oven, laundry clean & folded, a stocked fridge and a unfrazzled wife who had completed all tasks on the work list AND instead he seemed genuinely irritated surprised to find that I had not taken out the bins.

“Just joking love, just joking” he added quickly when I threw him the same look I usually reserve for when he refers to my maternity leave as ‘my year off’.

What do you do when your child is sick?  Do you have flexibility to work from home?  Do you find you get more work done, less done or about the same?  Does your husband suspect all you REALLY do all day is watch This Morning and Come Dine With Me re-runs?


  1. Katie
    October 24, 2011 / 11:22 PM

    Hey, so sorry to hear Zachy isn’t well, its horrid when the doctor tells you to go to A&E -I had that on friday although it turned out just to be a teething temperature for my little man. Big hugs xx

    • Grenglish
      October 25, 2011 / 1:25 PM

      Ah, poor little Alfie! Teething is not fun x

  2. October 25, 2011 / 6:51 AM

    He he, I’m at home all the time now and I shoot that look at OH too, usually for the same, or very similar comment. Hope Zachy is all better now.

    • Grenglish
      October 25, 2011 / 1:27 PM

      He is well on the mend, thank you! I pointed out to my OH that I hadn’t complained on the day he had worked from home when the house was a mess and he had his mum over and he said “yes but I was working love”. SO WAS I!! Sometimes it’s easier just to ignore…

  3. gill
    October 25, 2011 / 9:01 AM

    I’ve got a sick 12 year old and a sick 3 year old at the moment, and its half term! I’m really looking forward to going to work tomorrow and leaving the husband( who will be working from home!) to deal with all the snot. Hope Zachy is better soon, they do bounce back quickly after giving you the fright of your life. Angelo’s temperature was 38.9 yesterday, but fine today. Crazy kids. xx

    • Grenglish
      October 25, 2011 / 1:28 PM

      Gill, I do not know how you do it with 4 kids. How long have you been back at work? I must admit it is nice to talk to adults again xx

  4. October 25, 2011 / 1:13 PM

    I work from home all the time and it’s hard to sound professional on the phone when someone’s caterwauling to have their bottom wiped in the background.

    • Grenglish
      October 25, 2011 / 1:29 PM

      Hahaha, how very very true!!

  5. richmondmummy
    October 30, 2011 / 9:45 AM

    Oh god my heart was racing reading the beginning of this! Poor you, it must have been awful when the phone went dead and you were trying frantically to contact the Greek God(zilla) 🙁 Sorry to hear that Z has been unwell, little A has a chest infection at the moment too – she’s had this cough on and off for the past couple of weeks, but the doc says it’s not bad enough to need antibiotics so we’re just keeping an eye on it but I am keeping a closer eye since reading this blog post! get well soon Z xx

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