And just like that- things change. After my last post you'd think everything would be sunshine and roses right? Yeah, not so much.
I touched on helping kids have healthy emotions before (see Healthy Emotions Oct. '10). But this time, it's a bit different. How do I help Kara understand why I'm so scared and worried?
First some back story. Ever since Rowan was born I've been having some serious pain. Every month or so I'd get a shooting stabbing pain in my chest that would radiate out like a bra band around my chest and just squeeze. Each time I would get sick and throw up then feel better. I did the wise thing and (eventually) went to my doctor who thought it was heartburn. I got a medication and the name of a gastrointestinal doctor in case the medication didn't help. Well, it didn't. So off I went to see what else this could be. His thought? Gallstones. Oh goody. He ordered a sonogram and blood work. The latter to be done after another attack. Well lucky me the night before the sonogram was scheduled I had an attack. So first thing in the morning I got blood drawn and the sonogram. I called the doctor to let him know about the new attack and how much worse it was. His response? "have you gone to the ER already?". Um.... what? No.... should I have? Turns out the answer is Yes. Aurgh! He was 90% sure my gallbladder needs to come out. So 2 days later I got to meet with a surgeon who pretty much only does this sort of thing. When you meet with a surgeon it's rarely and "if you need surgery" and usually a "when you need surgery". Oh goody again.
I would like to state here and now that I do not like the idea of surgery. I've had it before and just don't like it. Think about it- a bunch of people get together and put you in clothes you would never pick out on your own. They stick all sorts of monitoring devices on you, insert needles, put masks on you all to pump chemicals you've never even heard of into your system. All for the purpose of making you unconscious to the point you won't even dream or preventing you from feeling pain. Then a bunch of people you really don't know put holes in your body, scope around inside it and remove something you were still using! I'm sorry but I was using that organ just a few minutes ago. Now comes the really fun part- recovery! Now if you like to be tended to and not able to do anything for yourself for a few days if not a week great! Enjoy the pampering. Me? nope, uh-uh, no way. Pampering and enjoying it to me is a day (or more) at a spa with quiet music, nice smells, and lots of massages. At home I want to be able to go to the kitchen, the basement, get the mail, go to the store, etc all on my very own. I don't want help getting in and out of a bed or shuffling my way to the bathroom. I really don't want someone to feel they need to sit outside the bathroom while I shower just in case I'm still groggy from all those chemicals they pumped into me. I don't like not knowing my own body as everything tries to shift and resettle.
Now add kids.
Yeah. That just got a whole lot more interesting didn't it? "but mommy, why can't I go with you?" "hey mom look at this!" as they try to bounce on your chest. "mom, since you can't move can I have a cookie? How about I go get them myself." "mommy I think the baby is hungry". Oh it just goes on and on. Especially with my ever so inquisitive, investigative and involved 3 yr old. And do you want to try and explain to the 6 month old why she doesn't get to be cuddled as much by mommy?
Add to all of this the lead up. The not knowing what will exactly happen. The emotional impact it has on me leaks to everyone else. Kara sees that I'm upset and I've tried to explain to her that something in my body isn't working right and needs to be removed. But how to do that without making her afraid of surgery, hospitals and the like? How to explain she can't watch, she can't be there when I go in? I'll be leaving for the hospital before she's even awake. I think even harder for her will be once I get home and she's not able to play with me for awhile. I won't be able to put her to bed or have her cuddle for too long (she kicks). Then Adam will be distracted with taking care of me and Rowan too. Sure, we have some help coming and I know that friends will be willing to assist. But it will still be hard for her. All the special visits and playdates don't make up for mommy.
THUNK THUNK THUNK. Yup, there go more shoes dropping. Sigh. I guess I'll go pick them up and see where I can put them.