09 December 2005

Snow Day, Home Day

It's a snow day today, which is a good thing: Curious Girl's schedule has been thrown out of whack by surgery earlier in the week. She's recovering, but she's still in some pain, and she's exhausted. She was so stressed at the hospital that she didn't really want to sleep much. If we said, "honey, close your eyes, try to sleep," she would say "I don't want the bed to roll." She had watched a "preparing for your surgery" video about eight million times in the week before surgery (you, too, would get obsessed by the talking giraffe narrator if you were three) and had been quite impressed with the notion of the stretcher on wheels. She seemed to think that if she fell asleep, more procedures would happen. (We had been careful to stress that the kind of sleep that you have in the OR is a special kind of sleep, a doctor sleep or an anaesthesia sleep, so that she didn't worry that every time she fell asleep she would end up operated on, but she knew the bed had wheels and wasn't totally buying it.) At discharge, as soon as she was in her car seat, she fell asleep, finally happy to be somewhere safe, and then she slept almost the whole first day home. Yesterday, she started eating again, but a three hour nap kept her up until midnight (from 11:15-11:45 she was laying on the dining room floor while I responded so student essays--she wanted to be near me and I wanted to much to just take her to bed but I needed to get responses back to students who have portfolios due next Monday. CG just put her pillow on the floor and zoned out, not quite asleep but not quite awake.)

It's great to be home: Joe's post about waiting for her daughter to wake up from anaesthesia captures so much of the anxiety that goes into being a parent in hospital, and I wish I were less tired so I could be more eloquent myself. I thought about Moreena and Annika while I was in hospital, too, knowing that we would be home quickly, knowing that they would be spending weeks in the hospital in Chicago. Annika's bleeding has resumed and it looks like they will not be home for Christmas, so please send some good thoughts their way. The truly sobering thing about going to the hospital is that there is always someone with a child sicker than yours. Curious Girl's roommate was a boy who'd had a tonsillectomy, and as we talked through the night with his mother, we heard about the various medical complications that run through his case and his baby brother's (who had gotten discharged from the hospital that same day), complications that likely indicate a rare disease that really doesn't have a good end, although that end is likely 25 years away, and things could change by then. But it was sad. For every time someone has ever said to me and Politica, "oh, I couldn't do what you have done with CG's feeding tube," we have always thought, "yes, yes, you would: you rise to the occasion for your child when she needs you," and "really, this isn't that bad." There are a lot of sick children in hospitals right now, and as I look out my window at a magical blanket of snow that has closed almost all the schools in the city, I'm so aware of the miracle that is relatively good health, and a child who is sleeping upstairs at 9:00 in the morning.

CG seems to be in less pain now, although I think she still hurts enough to feel whiny--she didn't wake up hurting in the night. I am looking forward to her waking up: there's nothing better than seeing the joy on a toddler's face when she sees all that snow (and her little shovel by the door--her little abdomen may not be up for it, but CG has been dying to shovel snow since she heard the snow was coming).

My tea is ready, so I'm going to take a cup and some student papers and crawl into bed and grade until she wakes up. Which will likely be in another 30 seconds since we all know what happens with a sleeping child when her mother has a plan to do something.

1 comment:

Phantom Scribbler said...

I hope Curious Girl did sleep for more than 30 seconds.

I find that I'm thinking of Moreena and Annika no matter what the context. In a hospital it must be overwhelming.