Boy sleeping in bed

Zzzzzzz.

It never fails — you’re getting ready to leave on a trip (be it business or fun) and suddenly the throat gets scratchy. Maybe there’s a cough or two, or sneeze. But it’s not you who’s getting sick — it’s your child.

What’s a parent to do when a kid get sick — and that same parent has travel plans? Being a working mom who travels for work, most times I don’t have much of a choice but to go anyway. Here’s how I cope with leaving a sick child behind.

Call home
I check in often with my husband, keeper of the kids, to see how everyone’s faring. Most of the time, he has things under control. I’ll then chat with the kids on the phone if they’re awake and up to it.

Call in reinforcements
I’ll also call in nearby friends and family and ask them to help out, or to be on call in case my husband can’t, say, get to the store for more juice. It takes a village, right? This is especially true when a kid is sick.

Leave some treats behind
If I have enough time, I’ll bake a special treat for everyone to enjoy (whether someone’s sick or not) — a fresh loaf of bread, scones or even cookies.

Bring something back
I’m notoriously bad at this one, bringing souvenirs back for the kids. Thankfully, they don’t expect me to bring back gifts — although they certainly don’t hate it when I do. But when I know someone back at home isn’t feeling their best, I try to bring them back a little something to brighten their day, such as some stickers or a toy from my travels.

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