This evening I was sitting outside watching my children play catch. I couldn’t help but laugh as my son, who is eight years old, try and catch the baseballs my daughter, 11 years old, would toss his way. She can catch a ball, but my son is still struggling.
It warms my heart to see him smiling when he catches a ball. It’s as if he conquered something enormous, which in his case – it is. When we are young, it is the small things that make us happy.
As an adult, I try to remember to smile about the small things.
I have been truly blessed with my two children. While having them was no easy walk in the park, raising them has been quite a trip.
When I had my daughter, I had to have an emergency C-section. I was fortunate enough to not have to stress over the operation ahead of time, which I am sure I would have should it have been a scheduled procedure. After she was born, she was taken to cleanup. My parents were there watching from an observation window when suddenly the curtains were closed on them. The curtains were closed because she had meconium. Of course, I didn’t find any of this out till later.
I came out of surgery and was placed in my room. The nurses brought in this tiny dark haired angel. I started crying. I couldn’t believe this was my little girl. I only had here for a few minutes because the nurses wanted me to rest. Later, the doctor would come in and say I wouldn’t be able to be near my daughter for at least 24 hours, because of my raging fever. That was torture.
I would walk down the hall to the nursery and watch my husband (ex-husband now) sit in a rocking chair and feed our (now she is simply MY) daughter. The doctor had walked in and saw me pitifully looking through the window and took pity on me. It was not long after, he informed the nurses I could see my child if I had been fever free for at least two hours.
She was so tiny! I couldn’t get over how small she was. We had taken her a set of clothes to come home in, but they were too large for her. She needed preemie clothes. Her first outfit was a yellow one with a pink ballerina on it. She was beautiful. She still is.
One of the worse experiences of my life came after we got home from the hospital. I was sent home with instructions to return if there was any leakage from the incision, if not I was to see my regular doctor (which did not perform the surgery because supposedly he was not in town) in ten days. I went back to the emergency room three times before my doctor’s appointment because of leakage and each time I was sent home.
Ten days after the surgery, I was in the doctor’s office with my newborn daughter, my mother, and my two year old niece. I was scheduled to have my staples out. Finally! I would not be seeing the doctor today, because the nurse always took out the staples.
After sitting on the table, my mother and I mentioned to the nurse how I been taken to the emergency several times for leakage. She didn’t say anything, just nodded her head. Once she looked at the surgery, she didn’t touch it. She simply said she had to get the doctor. Several minutes passed by while my mother and I just talked about what could be going on. I was getting nervous.
Dr. P walks in and asked how I am and makes mild small talk. While he is doing this, he is gathering items to start taking out the staples. First he got a long ‘Q-tip’ to clean the incision, upon starting the tip of the Q-tip went right through the incision and it burst open. I felt a gush of fluid spill out and down the sides of my body.
My niece screamed.
My newborn baby cried.
This was more shock of what happened than painful. I had yet to experience true pain. That was coming up next. Turned out, I had an infection, E. coli to be exact.
Yup, I had that. So, what does one do when they have an infection in an open incision? Well, I will tell you.
First, they have to clean it. They do this by scrubbing the infected area. THIS is what pain is. I screamed again, this time the duration of the cleaning. My niece was crying and screaming trying to open the door to get out. My daughter was crying too, there in her baby carrier. After the cleaning, came the packing. I was packed with gauzes and left open to heal from the inside out.
This happened in the morning. After the shock wore off, I as informed it would need to be done that evening as well. This would need to be done twice a day until the incision closed. Again, I cried. Remembering the pain from the first time, and knowing I would have to experience it again and again. I was scared. Scared of the pain I felt, and of the pain I was soon to feel again.
Pain is something I remember clearly from my pregnancy with my daughter. I was in pain all through it and afterwards with the infection. I survived it, obviously, but the emotional and physical scars remained.
Fast forward two years, when my husband and I planned my next pregnancy. Yes, planned. To the much disappoint of my parents. They were scared of what had happened. All I knew, was I wanted a boy.
As with all things, there are obstacles. I will go into those of my son, in another post.