Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Growing Pains

I knew I had officially grown up last October when the flu ransacked our house and everyone was left to fiend for themselves. Brain had his head in the toilet the whole night, Faith was gagging and retching (because of her Nissen she cannot throw up) and I could barely walk because I had just had surgery on my leg the day prior.

Faith needed to be suctioned, her crib needed to be changed (when you can't throw up it all goes out the other end) and I was in immense pain. As I lay there realizing the crappiness of the situation, I came to the realization that this was what it meant to be an adult. Forget leg pain, forget the stomach flu. It's my resposibility to take care of my sick baby, and no one is there to take care of me, not even me!

A similar (although not as nearly severe) situation occurred last night. We avoided the hospital this weekend and it looked like things were on the up and up. Until last night all hell broke lose and it was another miserable night of non-stop suctioning and non-sleeping (although the latter is not unique in our house). While nothing compared to the stomach flu, Brian and I caught whatever Faith had and have been battling our own illnesses.

All I wanted to do was take some NyQuil and go to bed. But I couldn't. I couldn't even lay down because every time my head hit the pillow I would need to suction Faith again. This is the difference between a typical child having a cold and our child; suctioning. There is nothing I despise more than the sound of the suctioning machine slicing through my migraine at 3am...that and the non-stop alarming of the vent every time I "make a pass."

I couldn't help but loathe in a little self-pity as I realized that my child would be turning two years old the following day and she has yet to ever sleep through a night. Forget sleeping through the night, at this point we'd be happy if she slept through an hour.

The difference between last October and this year is that I handeled the situation with a little bit more maturity this time around.

At 4am when Brian came in and realized that not a wink of sleep had been had, he pleaded with me to call in sick. Knowing full well my alarm clock was going to be going off in the next hour, I reluctantly said no. And then he said something that struck a chord with me. He remarked that If any of the teachers at our school experienced one night like we had just had, you could bet your bottom dollar they'd call in, the only difference between us and them is that we do this 3-4 times a week (OK the bottom dollar part was me..Brian's not that cheesy).

He was right. And I was tired. And the difference between last October and now was that I knew our nurse would be here in the morning. A nurse I trust. A nurse I could shut my door and sleep the day a way without ever worrying about my daughter.

Around 6 am I caved in and called the sub line, e-mailed my colleagues, took a swig of NyQuil and I finally grew up.

-Jen :)


Ann said...

Oh Jen! I'm glad you decided to take the day off and sleep. I can count on one hand how many times I've done the same over the last ten years. It's never an easy decision, although it should be a no brainer. As Brian pointed out, if anyone else was in our shoes, we'd hands down say take care of yourself, but we can't seem to cut ourselves the same slack. I'm sorry you, Brian and Faith are not getting any sleep. There is no worse torture than lack of sleep in my book. I've often said that I'm not afraid to go to hell when I die because I've already lived it here on earth.

I hope your hell on earth comes to an end soon. You've paid your dues girlfriend.

Lots of love,

Hope said...

Jen, I'm so glad you called in and got some much needed sleep. I hope you feel better fast. I can't imagine how you and Brian do what you do on a good day, much less with no sleep. I'm sorry I don't have any amazing words of advice, but I do offer my thoughts and prayers.

Marissa said...

I am sad to hear that you are sick too, BUT I am glad to hear that you "grew up" and took some time to rest today. I couldn't be more happy that you finally have a nurse that you can trust and that will let you take time to be sick and get better.

I am hoping and praying that everyone is better for a certain someone's big day tomorrow.

God bless,