Preparing for a Sick Toddler

This is Day 27 of the 31 Days to a Better Life: Living Life on Purpose series.  {Subscribe here.}  You can find all of the posts here.

You’re up with a sick toddler.  You’ve only had about an hour’s sleep.  You have to be at work by 8 a.m.  This is never an easy situation.  You must decide on whether or not you’re staying home with the little one.  You must also get through the day on very little sleep fulfilling responsibilities of work or caring for the toddler.  Either way, it’ll be a long day.

Preparing for a Sick Toddler

Preparing for a Sick Toddler

You must do two things to prepare for a sick toddler.  You never know when the day hits, so it doesn’t hurt to prepare ahead of time or maybe you’re the person I just described with the day in your face.  

First, Decide Who Stays Home With Your Sick Toddler

You have two decisions.  Stay home with him or leave him with someone while you work. This is a decision you (and your spouse) may wish to discuss ahead of time, so that you’re not operating on 2 hours sleep when the day of arrives.

If you decide to take off work.

Don’t feel guilty about missing work. If you are fortunate enough to have sick or personal days, use them. This is your child, who will only be little for a short while. Cherish those times you are able to snuggle with and comfort him.

If you decide to go to work.

If you are not able to take off work to care for your sick toddler, do not feel guilty about it. There are sufficient reasons why you may not be able to stay home with your sick toddler.

  • Your daycare provider may not keep an ill child.  Be sure to have someone who can watch him on days like these.  Maybe your spouse could take a sick day and stay home with the little one.
  • Your employer may not provide sick or personal days. You’d lose out on pay and you can’t afford to miss a day’s wages.
  • You have a deadline that won’t be met if you do miss work. Be sure to evaluate this one carefully, as you may still be able to meet it and care for your little one.

Whatever you decide, I stress again, do not feel guilty. Motherhood comes with so many difficult decisions. Make your decision, be confident in it and move forward. Don’t second guess yourself or feel like you have to give an answer to anyone for the decision you custom-fit for your situation.

Second, Prepare a Sick Day Activity Bag for Your Toddler

Have a sick day activity bag ready for your sick toddler.  He or she probably needs to sleep more than anything, but there will be times during the day that boredom will present itself.  You can put some quiet activities in the bag to keep your child’s mind off how he feels.  I wouldn’t put too much in the bag or you may just overwhelm your sick toddler.

Activities for Your Sick Toddler Activity Bag

  • Crayons and a coloring book
  • A book or two, maybe one about being sick
  • A special movie
  • Bubbles
  • A Small soft blanket or teddy bear to cuddle with

  • Do not put this one in your bag, but I’d have some Pedialyte Freezer Pops hidden away in the freezer for your sick toddler on days like this.  Your sick toddler may not feel like eating or drinking.  These will help prevent dehydration for a short time.
  • You can find several activities to add to your sick day activity bag online.


Whatever you decide in preparing for your sick toddler’s sick day, do not feel guilty or second guess yourself.  Continue on with your day knowing that you love your sick toddler more than anyone else in this world could ever attempt.


16 thoughts on “Preparing for a Sick Toddler

  1. Great tips! I have 2 little ones who are sick right now so I’ll be putting these tips to use this week. I like the bubbles idea and love those Bear books. Thanks for sharing!
    Karen recently posted…Buy the Store BrandMy Profile

    1. @Karen ~ I sure hope your kiddos are feeling better today. I love the extra cuddles but sure feel helpless when they’re sick.

    1. @Deb ~ Two of my kiddos are almost grown (16 and 17). Our little one was a surprise, but he’s worth every ounce of sleep deprivation.

  2. I have a two year old and she gets sick a few times a year. Mostly she wants to be held, but when she doesn’t I try to find some activities for her. Thanks for the ideas.
    Alisha H. recently posted…Lace and Bows!My Profile

    1. Oh, grandkids! My youngest almost feels like a grandkiddo. He was so unexpected and having a child when you’re much older is truly a different experience.

  3. Aweee sick little ones – so sad – as mothers we feel so helpless – what a great post to help moms! My kiddos are young adults now and I do not have grand babies yet but thankfully we now have people like you sharing great ideas to help moms through these trying times.
    Joely Smith recently posted…Holiday Gift Guide Gifts Under 150.00My Profile

  4. Aww, my kids have been getting sick often which is weird since they eat well. But, colds and other bugs seem to rotate often in their school.

  5. When my little guy is sick we usually cuddle up on the couch and watch frozen. I make him rice, because it is his favorite food and settles easy if he is having tummy issues. I have found that reading his favorite books always help too.
    valerie recently posted…Love with Food November BoxMy Profile

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge