Strep throat struck my family this weekend. My Friday ended with an after-dark run to the local pediatric urgent care clinic. An hour and a half later I was at the 24-hour pharmacy with three positive strep tests and two double ear infections in my three kids ages 3 to 7.

I was tired, they were tired, my husband was out-of-town, and my primary goal was to just survive the night and ultimately the weekend.

Photo by Kurhan on

By the time we got home, all three kids were asleep in their carseats. Keep in mind, I am 5’4″, live in a two-story house with all bedrooms upstairs, and I drive a Chevy Silverado. I had to unhook each kid, drag them from the backseat, and carry them up the stairs one by one. This was especially fun since I can only open the back doors on one side of the truck thereby forcing me to drag a 50-pound 7-year-old across the entire width of the vehicle on my knees.

Twenty minutes later, they were all tucked in bed. Red, green, and blue Popsicle juice stained their lips and tongues, and their teeth were unbrushed. My back and neck hurt, but relief of the day ending comforted me.

I went to bed thinking about how exhausting the weekend would be, and I wondered how I was staying so positive.

I think positivity comes with life experiences. I, for example, have survived a massive 9-month hell of an ongoing series of stomach viruses passing continually through my three kids. It was awful, and my carpet may never recover.

I have held my infant running a 105 temperature in the hospital in the middle of the night with no apparent cause. I spent the next several days rocking a 2 month old with her arm wrapped with IV tubes as she went from crying to listlessness with no answers in sight despite the blood tests and spinal taps.

I have had my newborn taken from my arms for unexplained breathing issues. I have experienced the heart-wrenching realities of the NICU with two of my kids.

I have felt the painful loss of miscarriage, the challenges of infertility, and the diagnosis process of identifying learning differences in a child who simply cannot read or write.

All of these things were trying. All of them were exhausting. But each served in some way to give me strength as a mom, endurance as a person, and compassion as a friend.

Now I can add a triple dose of strep to my list of the things I have survived, and I am a stronger person for it.

Overcoming obstacles gives me the will to face whatever obstacle lies around the next bend, and…

Where there’s a will, there’s a way.