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Let's Panic: The Book!

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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain,
and Finally Turn You
into a Worthwhile
Human Being.

Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

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Sleep Is
For The Weak

Chicago Review Press

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Let's Panic

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At LET'S PANIC ABOUT BABIES, Eden Kennedy and I share our hard-won wisdom and tell you exactly what to think and feel and do, whether you're about to have a baby or already did and don't know what to do with it.

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Thursday
Feb112010

Of course in reality we are grateful for our health

I was talking with my friend Abby, who had just suffered through several sick-kid-induced sleepless nights, and was losing her mind a little bit.

Abby: I need a break. I need a good reason to lie down for a few days.

Me: I know. When Henry was sick last week and sneezed in my face, part of me got a little excited. Because then I'd be really sick, and I'd have to take to my bed.

Abby: I totally get that, except I dream about getting in an accident.

Me: Excuse me?

Abby: Not a bad one, of course. Just getting banged up enough that I have to stay in the hospital for a couple of days. For observation. Of course the kids wouldn't be in the car, just me. I don't want anyone else getting hurt.

Me: This is sad, Abby. Why couldn't you just get sick?

Abby: It wouldn't work. I have three kids, they'd still need me all the time. Then I'd be sick and in charge.

Me: No, but in my fantasies I'd be so sick that Scott would have to take over. I'd be too feverish to be left alone.

Abby: Nope. They'd still get at me. Even if Nate were home. There's always one who'll sneak away and demand something from me.

Me: That's a good point.

Abby: That's the advantage of the only child. You get to just have the flu. I need a car accident.

Me: Oh dear.

Abby: I NEED IT.

Reader Comments (108)

Goodness, my youngest (of three - I also have a 4 year old daughter and an insane-whirling-dervish 2 year old son) is five months old and I have been fantasizing about a car accident since the morning I brought her home. I've been sick several times in her short life but, unfortunately, not sick enough for a hospital visit. I too fear that a car accident is my only hope of a true vacation. My husband is wonderful, but outnumbered, and sadly, a "dude" who is occasionally flabbergasted by the demands of small children.

What did our mothers do when they needed a break? I feel so selfish sometimes when I think of my mom with two kids 17 months apart living in the boonies with no car and two neighbors. Two neighbors she didn't even like.

Alas, the guilt does not make me stop dreaming of a minor car accident.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAngie
I was hospitalised for a week last last July... really ill, no diagnosis, left me with Chronic Fatigue. The house was a wreck when I got home. GRRR.The in December I had to fly back to the US for 12 days for a double funeral... I thought SURELY when I returned at least the tree would be up, or the clothes washed or something. Anything. Nope.

On the upside if I snap and strangle my husband, I'm pretty sure I can get off due to insanity.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTinkersdamn
Oh God I dread getting sick what with the nursing my daughter and my son's constant demands. Whenever I am sick my Husband always lets someone by--in my more paranoid moments I suspect him of actually sending someone up to bother me. Oh but a hospital stay for a minor problem(as long as it didn't require an i.v.) that would be lovely.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth
I left my three children home with their father for 24 hours. complete bliss. until I got home and had to deal with the aftermath. worth it? I don't know. I totally get that wish though.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterkristen
Wow...I am not alone. Thank you for sharing.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbouncy
I'm not a mom, but I SO EMPATHISE! When I worked in fashion, I used to have fantasies of getting into an accident and ending up in a coma so that I could just get some rest. How sad is that?
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea
I can remember looking forward to labor and delivery...because then I'd be out of the house for a few days...

Can you imagine??!!
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAlexandra
There is no reality Alice, keep making shit up. Oh, and read Earl's post today for inspiration to design your future by.

http://earlpomerantz.blogspot.com
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJessica
Hilarious!!! I've fantasized about similar things but have never told anyone. I always thought that I would regret those fantasies if a sickness or accident ever really happened. It strikes me that a number of women here have been sick/in the hospital and loved it!
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterwinsome
On my first meeting with a psychologist to do battle with post natal depression (horrible, horrible state that I was in) I was somewhat disappointed that he wouldn't lock me up!Flu, vomiting bugs, strep throat: it all makes no difference; I am still on call for the kids and even my work just piles up on my desk so it's even more unmanageable when I drag my sorry butt back in.

Instead of illness, I have moved on to a more sophisticated fantasy of commiting a minor, but not too minor criminal offence and being jailed. Same conditions, but no sickness. Yay!
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRLJ
Oh how I wish this weren't true.

I dream about being committed all the time. I imagine lots of comfy pillows, time for reading, time for napping.

Unfortunately, I have my mental health.



February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSue from Navel Gazing
I am so glad I'm not the only one wishing for accidents or injuries. I thought maybe there was something wrong with me. There may still be, but that isn't it. Thank you.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermelissa
Every mother's fantasy, sure.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterpatois
I have four children under nine. I TOTALLY GET THIS.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAlicia
You people are SICK.

I'm kidding. I'm so right there with you. Sometimes I dream of getting pregnant again, just so I can be in the hospital for those two precious days with nurses to care for me and the new baby while my husband's at home watching the other two.

It's a solid strategy, no? WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG?
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBlabbermouse
I have four kids. And we just had a snowstorm. So no school for the older ones. And not only that, but I have PMS. So I just posted on my blog about how I wished Aliens would abduct my kids. Not for long, you know, just for a couple of days for observation or whatever it is that aliens do with people when they abduct them and then bring them back. And of course they would erase the kids' memories of it, so they would be none the wiser and I would just get a couple of days alone, like in a time warp. Anyway, it's here: http://feedingmyhungry.blogspot.com/
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLynn
I thought I was alone in this thought. I think this can be called desperation, no?
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMary @ Holy Mackerel
I like to dream I've been sent to jail. Like maybe for six months, to like a white collar prison. With an exercise yard and a tv and maybe my own cell. The kids could visit, but that's it. I need to figure out what the crime would be to get me sent there. Maybe stealing mail? That's a felony right?
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBitethebedbugs
So I'm not alone in this? Wow! I've actually considered having another kid just to get a hospital stay (and I'd pray for some minor complication so I could milk it for a few days). However, reality quickly sets in and I know it would just make it worse and longer in the long run.



February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca
This makes absolute sense to me. Even now, at 12, the twins are COMPELLED by some strange mystical force to enter my room and wake me up the instant I manage to fall asleep during a rare nap.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered Commenteredj
i'm with sue from navel gazing. a nice quiet spell in the mental hospital has been a secret fantasy of mine since my eldest was born nearly 14 years ago...
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersophiefair
Oh my gosh you guys are totally crazy!! Just kidding, I dream daily about when I'll once again have the luxury of peeing by myself without two acrobatic clowns jumping all over the bathroom and trying to sit on my lap. For heavens sake isn't anything sacred anymore?!
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKari
O.M.G.

Thank you for affirming that I'm not a horrible person for having these same wishes.
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAimee
How perfect would it be to hire a company that 1. Whisks you off to a quiet retreat center where you could read and relax all day. (we dont need frills, we just need peace!) and 2. Send a grandmotherly-like lady to your house 4 hours before you return to tie up all of the loose ends your husband didnt handle. That would be the perfect vacation.



February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea, 32
I've had that wish, in various forms, since adolescence. The advantage of accident over illness is that illnesses are liable to make you feel crappy which diminishes the pleasure of being in bed, whereas an accident is more likely to take you off-site (key), procure opiates (bonus), and only hurt if you move (moot, if you have no intention of moving).
February 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNotFace

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