Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Return To Me: Thoughts on Blogging, Babies, and the Blessed Mother
Back on Friday, I was so excited to start bringing this blog back from the dead, and truly I am. At the time my most recent post went up, Andrew and I had just gotten home from spending the night in the hospital with our sweet baby boy.
In the middle of the night last Wednesday, Aaron started screaming hysterically in his sleep, on and off for about three hours. It sounded clear to us that he was experiencing either a good amount of pain or of fear, but since he didn't wake, we chalked it up to a night terror sort of thing. I figured I'd let him sleep the morning away and then end up with a happy, well-rested baby, but after Andrew left for work around sunrise, Aaron continued screaming on and off, then began throwing up continually, like the more-than-typical-spit-up variety. The more he puked, the greener it got, which Google told me indicates bile loss and is fairly serious. After trying not to panic and calling the pediatrician, off we headed to the emergency room. As I was packing up to leave, Aaron was completely listless--no eye contact, no nursing (his refusal to eat was what started to really concern me) no interaction at all, and my baby who ordinarily fights sleep with all his heart wanted to do nothing but sleep. I thought we were in the clear after he finally nursed for a few minutes near the end of our ER stay (this was before I knew we were about to be admitted to the regular pediatric ward), but no sooner had he finished than up came some more green and out came some blood in his diapers, three in a row.
All that bile loss and bloody poop resulted in an IV drip, ultrasounds, an X-ray, and ultimately, an overnight stay in the hospital for my poor little man. Andrew and I agreed it was one of the scariest experiences of our lives (and my husband almost took out a doctor in his frustration). Thanks be to God, Aaron accepted some Pedialyte that evening, slowly perked up again, and eventually started nursing again during the night. Amazingly, whatever sickness this was seems to have been a quick-hitting virus, and my baby has been contentedly eating and sleeping away and seems even smilier than before. I told my sister-in-law this weekend that as long and as difficult a day it was, Aaron's easy recovery has almost made me forget about it already, not in the sense of willfully blocking it out, but just in the sense of gratitude for such a speedy return to his normal, happy demeanor.
Why am I talking about my baby's poop and vomit and clumsily trying to connect it to my blog? I mentioned Friday that writing my manuscript has coincided with having a newborn, and both of those things have taken priority over blogging, rightfully so, over the past few months. I'm excited to return to more regular posts, but at the same time I've felt a little guilty just wanting to hop on the computer the second Aaron falls asleep, and I've missed my other hobbies, too. Mamas who dash off daily posts and birth stories just days after getting home from the hospital, I salute you and you better believe I gobble up those birthin' tales. For me though, I've come to prefer and be at peace with way less screen time than I've had lately, and if that means more time with my menfolk then I'll gladly take it.
So this is a return to my blog, but in a moderate way. The other night in the hospital, nursing Aaron in the chair we slept in (all. night.), I was thinking how, as crummy and scary a situation as we were in, my sense of presence felt renewed, and being present, without all the usual distractions I surround myself with while nursing or generally taking care of him, is so freeing for me. All I needed to do at the moment was feed my baby, hold him, and let him get better.
Much as I love the Rosary, I'm honestly kind of delinquent about it a lot of the time, but have made efforts to recommit myself to it this Lent. Something about this being my first Lent with a son, I feel like I've been able to see through Mary's eyes in a new way--the closeness, the deep love, and yes, the shared sorrow, between her heart and Jesus' is a new revelation for me. In each mystery, she is present and is loving her son in the profound way of feeling every emotion and experience the person you love is feeling, to the same degree they are. I get it now (and I'm sure I'd feel pretty similarly if I had a daughter, since the love of a mother and child is so powerful regardless of whether it's a boy or girl). I think Our Lady has been pulling me back to her these last few weeks, out of my spiritual laziness and into a different, deeper knowledge of her heart, and I'm so thankful for that grace. And so I return.
Mamacitas, I'd be so interested to hear your take on sharing time between your blog baby and your baby-baby! Thoughts?