They should have worker’s comp for at-home moms. I think I have quite a case. My right shoulder has been aching for a few weeks now. I should probably seek medical attention, but I know what they’ll tell me—rest your right arm. Frankly, there’s about as much chance that I’ll get to rest my right arm as there is that I’ll fit into my high school jeans, so I’m not sure there’s any point in seeing the doctor.
Caveman is fond of throwing himself at me from across the room. Princess seems to think I exist to carry her things. Then there are the diaper changes involving an unwilling, 40-lb 2-year-old. I keep suggesting that if he doesn’t want to have his diaper changed he could just learn to use the potty, but so far my extremely reasonable suggestion has been ignored, so I wrestle him to the changing pad and pin him down while changing his diaper. Basically, there’s no chance my right arm will get “rest” any time soon. I never knew raising kids would be so physically demanding.
In addition to my shoulder, there are the less-obvious kid-related “injuries.” The extra skin around my stomach, which was, pre-kids, pretty flat despite my “plump” figure. The need to wear a cautionary pantyliner just in case I cough or sneeze without warning. Sciatica and heartburn, both of which made an appearance when I was pregnant with Princess and just stuck around because I have such a sparkling personality.
There’s the black eye I got when Caveman rolled off the bed and I dove to catch him, getting a tiny foot right in the eye. The scraped legs from the time I fell while holding a baby Princess and turned my body to hit the ground so that she wouldn’t. All injuries sustained while “working,” so I think worker’s comp should apply.
I read a news story recently focused on “parent injuries.” It’s more common than we think—broken noses resulting from toddler headbuts, dislocated shoulders following a particularly hard “catch me, Daddy!” jump, and countless other minor ailments parents accept as part of the job. I’m not saying I’d trade my kids for a pain-free shoulder. I’m just suggesting that OSHHA put out a brochure warning parents of the physical demands of parenting.
And maybe I’d like to be featured in an episode of “Dangerous Jobs.”