Monday, May 31, 2010

Hospital Mom

I feel like I have a basketball in my stomach.

Long story short: Got shipped to hospital via ambulance for emergency appendectomy. There's more, but I don't really feel up for delving into the details.

I had the surgery Friday late night and was released from the hospital Sunday afternoon. I don't understand why I miss the hospital so much once I've gone home. I suppose it has something to do with feeling pampered and mothered around the clock. Now that I'm home, it's suddenly so quiet. All the responsibilities of being home come flooding back. I also have to depend on others to help with Thurston or get things done and it's extremely frustrating.

I felt this way after we took Thurston home from the hospital last year, except that was complicated with a cocktail of hormones flooding through my system. I think instead, I'm coming down from whatever crazy painkillers they gave me and the "mothering" effect of the hospital.

It's times like these I wish she were here. She was always my protector. I remember a trip to France with my parents as a 6-year-old. We were waiting in the elevator line to leave the Eiffel Tower and I felt sick to my stomach. My mother man-handled the crowd, forcing herself (and me) through, shouting, "I have a sick child here!" to get us down sooner. Another time, I was so cold from a fever, she took to microwaving towels to try and get me warm. One of them caught fire. It makes me smile to remember. A flood of emotions came back to me as I rested in the same hospital she was in when she started to get really sick. A blocked off memory resurfaced of her hooked up to breathing machines, tubes, and especially of her face after seeing mine. I couldn't help but tear up when I saw her and she looked back at me with such concern and helplessness. I knew she wanted nothing more than to comfort me at that moment and here she was, sicker than she'd ever been. The doctors shooed me out of the room because I was causing her upset.

I have so many questions I want to ask her now that I am a mother that go unanswered. It leaves a hollow feeling in the pit of my stomach to know there is so much I can never know about her. Even hollower that she isn't here to see and hold her grandchild. She would have happily stolen him away this weekend so that Dave could have stayed by my side at the hospital. I was alone for my surgery, which probably upset Dave more than I. I feel this pit in my stomach more often than I realize and sometimes I can't even remember why. I block her out of my life because I want her so bad.

In reality, I am much better than this. I'm probably coming down from a kazillion effects of surgical drugs. It's the middle of the night and I feel tired, sore, bloated, and surprisingly unable to sleep in my own bed. Writing this out has also made me feel somewhat lighter-- as if I have been able to let go a little bit.

There's one last thing that I have to let go of: The antibiotics I am on are unsafe for breastfeeding. Thurston nurses infrequently now - just at night or occasionally when he sticks his arm down my shirt and demands it in his own cute way. I was happy to oblige because it meant cuddle time. It's so hard to let go of nursing, harder than I expected. A part of me wants to try and pump to keep from going dry until the 10-day dose is up but I know that's unrealistic. I just have to realize that this is the time.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Humbled Parent

You're in a restaurant and a child is screeching his head off while mother looks unconcerned. He drops his pacifier on the floor and she gives it merely a wipe-down before popping it into his mouth to shut him up. You lean over and whisper to your friend/date/spouse/other, "gosh, look at that terrible, no good, very bad mother! I would never do that if that was my child!"

Hahaha! Just wait until you eat your words. You'll do it all and not bat an eye.

Things I do that I swore I would never do as a mother:

1. Talk in third person, referring to myself as "mama". It gets worse...I do this when I'm not even around Thurston.

2. Let my child scream in public.

3. Feed crackers to my child to shut him up. Obviously, I'm going to be the perfect mother and find ways of entertaining my child while shopping, riding public transit, dining, etc. without resorting to feeding him salty, processed crackers. Right. Like that's going to happen. I tried the low-salt, plain boring crackers. He just throws those on the floor. He knows what the good stuff is.

4. Let my child eat food that has fallen on the floor.

5. Be that person in a crowded place with a large stroller.

6. Eat food my child has slobbered all over.

Yes, I am that person.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Blogging drought

I have no excuse other than I have too much to write, which overwhelms me so I don't write anything. It seemed logical at the time....

At Thurston's one year appointment, he weighed in at 21 lbs, 13 oz (35%). He's turning into a tank. Seriously! This guy's got some girth on him. It might have to do with the fact that he loves stuffing his face. The other day we were at a coffee shop and he managed to put a hunk of kiwi in his mouth. He looked up to me with his face all puffed out, full to the brim of kiwi and a bit of green sticking out between his lips. He grabs for another piece of kiwi and tries to stick it in his mouth as well. Obviously, this causes him some trouble and he ends up jamming it against his nose, kiwi juice running down his face. A girl standing next to me joins me in laughing hysterically and tells me we made her morning. This kid is a serious walking riot.

Today was our first day of daycare. As Dave and I have opposing schedules, we'll only need part time care (Monday, Thursday & Friday). Dave and I were both a bundle of nerves on Sunday. How would he do when he realized we weren't there? How would he nap? How were we going to deal with not having him toddling about all day? How were we all going to deal with an abrupt change in routine?

Well....overall we all dealt fairly well and came out unscathed. Dave dropped him off at about 9 and snuck out as Thurston was poking about his new surroundings. Apparently he didn't even notice we weren't there until an hour had passed. He ate well and even napped for a little over an hour. I picked him up at 4:30 and received a phone call from an anxious Dave at 4:45, who was curious about his little man. I think both our nerves are calm now.

I think daycare is going to be so good for him. There are three kids in his classroom - The Wobblers, for ages 1-2. The other kids seem friendly and interactive. The daycare providers teach them to be gentle, they're great at teaching language skills, sing songs, read, etc. I'm very thrilled with the staff and happy with the facilities. I'm also thrilled to open up our schedules a little bit, provide some additional family time, and increase our sanity.

Finally, and most excitingly, Thurston has begun walking. He took a few teensy steps here and there around his first birthday. Last Sunday, on a visit to Cory's, I plopped Thurston on the floor and he walked part way across the room to get to the chair. I thought it was a fluke, so I picked him up and plopped him back down. Again, he toddled across the floor. Each day, he's getting better and better at walking. It so exciting to watch him learn these new skills as he grins from ear to ear with pride.