Nohea has been coughing every night for the last couple of weeks, keeping us awake and annoyed. Up until last night, I gave her a small dosage of children's cough syrup. Then watching my early morning news, I learned cough syrup isn't good for children under 6. They suggested wired and frantic mothers try running hot water in a bathroom and letting the child breath in the steam. Of course I've heard this before, but I'd never tried it. Last night, or rather early this morning, I tried it once Nohea started on the nightly coughing habit. I stood in the hot shower holding her (standing to the side of the spout so as not to get us wet), letting her breath in the vapors for a good 10 minutes. She continued to cough while I firmly yet gently patted her back.
I exited the shower, and miracles of miracles, it worked. Not one more cough escaped her throat, and she is still sleeping soundly next to Kulani as I write this. I've been able to get in some healthy work hours.
I'm amazed at my mothering efforts in recent years. I'm not bragging against someone else's mothering skills (because I've known much better mothers than me), but I am admitting that I feel as though I'm becoming a better and gentler mother with each child. I was able to calmly and sweetly help my baby back to sleep last night even though I was extremely tired.
I remember when Lilia would awaken in the night crying with earaches when she was a baby. We were living with Lani at the time, so we would quickly try to ease her pain. Though I was gentle, my nerves would be a wreck. And then Melissa came and we lived in our new house, and I was probably the least understanding of her needs, making her cry herself to sleep within months of her birth. She was actually a fairly easy baby, though, but not so much of an easy toddler. But she seems to have turned a corner, and she's extremely pleasant to be with these days.
Last night at Family Home Evening, we had the first ever Fisher Family Fitness Test. The lesson was on the Word of Wisdom, then Lilia presented a plan for the family to "eat apples, not candybars; buckle our seatbelts; and brush our teeth" complete with drawings of the assignments (what do you mean you haven't read those verses in the Doctrine and Covenants?). For the fitness test, the girls had to do as many sit-ups as they could, 10 push-ups, 10 kicks with both legs, 10 karate punches, and stretch to touch their toes.
While Lissy was doing her sit-ups and I was holding her feet for support, I instructed her to breathe through the sit-ups. When it was my turn, Lissy held my feet, and upon seeing me struggle, she returned the advice, "breathe through the sit-ups, Mom." That had us cracking up.
Having a family really does bring a lot of joy.