I picked up my middle child sick from school yesterday.
She came down with the dreaded flu that her younger sister most likely gave to her or any of the other kiddos in her class at school.
High fever, chills, no appetite, exhaustion.
After a night of alternating ibuprofen and acetaminophen, we both woke up tired.
I turned on the coffee and she grabbed a blanket and the couch.
Wringing out the wash cloth with really cold water, grabbing the Gatorade and making the toast, I thought, I can't run, not for 10 miles.
My phone said that the temp was 41 degrees. Perfect. The sun was masked but only slightly by the clouds and I had new songs on my playlist. And I only had a short window, my son had a flag football game, so I had to be back in an hour and a half.
Scarfing down a banana and grabbing my gear, I left. And I ran and I ran and I ran. Never stopping until I made it home. It was glorious. There really is nothing better than running in the fall.
But then, I came home and Kate's fever had spiked again and she was miserable. We laid down together and took a long nap, but right before we fell asleep, she said, "Thanks for taking care of me, mama."
Always, I love you.
"I love you too. And when you get sick, I'll take care of you."
To which, I instantly transported myself to end of life thoughts and thought about my daughter putting cold wash cloths on my head until I could no longer bear it.
This time is sacred. There's no question that pop up illnesses are inconvenient and detour us from the plans we've made, but they are brief, gentle reminders to slow down and to serve those we love. It really is one of the holiest things we can do for each other.
Here's to her fever breaking and hot coffee in the morning.