Have you ever felt like your family just can’t escape the Black Plague of sickness that just keeps getting passed around? For the last three weeks our family has taken turns getting sick. All three of my boys got strep throat at various times during the past three weeks. My youngest son and I both had whatever nasty virus is going around making you feel like death for 5 or 6 days.

I mean really virus, I am a MOM! I only have maybe one day at the most to be down for the count, but last week it was a full five days before I felt human again. FIVE DAYS! No jokes people! That means I missed church. Yep, I did. That means I cancelled elementary children’s ministry for day because I could not make it. Yepperoni. That means I stayed home with my kids, lying on the couch watching movies, because that is all I could do.

I have never cancelled Kinetic Kids for illness, but you know, I am realizing, maybe I should have. I don’t know how many times I have dragged a not too well feeling kid, hopped up on Motrin, to church so I can do what I am supposed to be doing because there is no one else to do it! Or, I have left my sick baby boy (who is actually 5) home with his big brother because both mom and dad have had to be at church that morning. Talk about guilt. My youngest may not remember it, but I do!

As sick as I am of our family being sick, I am sick at the thought that for many months and years even, I have felt like I had to be there. I had to be there or else it wouldn’t get done. I had to be there or else no one else would do it. I had to be there because I am, after all, the Planter’s/Pastor’s wife and I am always well and happy. Or maybe I have just been too scared to let it fall…

Guess what happened last week when I wasn’t there and canceled Kinetic Kids? NOTHING! Kids sat with their parents, church went on, the day went on and I was able to take care of myself and my sick kids. People even came back the next week. Some people even brought over food and checked up on me!

If I can do anything to encourage you as a new planter’s wife it would be don’t be afraid to take care of your first responsibilities first. That is your health and that of your family’s. Don’t let anyone (even your husband) pressure you into doing something if your gut is telling you “no.” It is hard, super hard, because we all feel that responsibility to our church. But we are not irreplaceable and the church won’t die if we take care of the needs of our family. I was soooooo much better at this when the kids were young. But now that they are older and I have a position at the church, I sometimes forget that it is OK for me or my kids to be sick just like anyone else!

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