Another First & Another Parenting Realization
It’s been a rather rough week. And I am so ready for something positive to happen.
You see, I haven’t had time to write about it just yet, but in addition to the deep and overwhelming grief I am trying to cope with, we also spent a day in the emergency room with Little MPB. Now, before everyone worries, rest assured that Little MPB is okay and will be just fine. He has a gastrointestinal virus, aka a stomach bug. This bug just has to work through his system and he’s home from daycare until he’s fever breaks and the diarrhea stops. It should clear out of his system sometime within the next 2 weeks. This is Little MPB’s first encounter with a stomach bug, and both Mr. MPB and I managed to find ourselves covered in puke and changing more diapers then we prefer to at all hours of the day and night (and as an added bonus it’s likely highly contagious – neither Mr. MPB or I are looking forward to our turn). This is definitely one of those first that we knew was coming one day, but one we hoped we could avoid for ever.
Needless to say, combining a toddler with a stomach bug and grief over our dog, and no-one in this house has slept in days.
But the trip to the emergency room and ongoing stomach bug is actually not the point today.
Instead, I want to tell a story about a parenting realization I had at the hospital.
You see, when we went to the hospital I knew Little MPB wasn’t dying. He had a high fever, but we were able to manage it with Advil and Tylenol and he wasn’t over lethargic or inconsolably irritable. And I knew that kids can have diarrhea and vomiting and they probably aren’t going to die. In fact, we only went to the hospital because we decided we needed to be safe rather then sorry since we had never experienced this type of illness. And while I was almost embarrassed for overreacting, the nurses and doctor continued to reassure us that we made the right call to bring him in.
While at the hospital, I caught myself as I said to the ER Doctor, I’m sure this will be just like when he had Roseola, we’ll freak out because it’s his first time with it. But now we are like, it’s just Roseola, no big deal.
I distinctly remember how annoyed I was when other more seasoned mom’s said it’s just Roseola, no big deal to me, after we rushed our son to the Children’s hospital with a 104 degree temperature when he was just a few months old. I remember being so filled with annoyance, maybe even rage, that they couldn’t understand how scary this was! I felt judged for taking our son to the emergency for his high fever, I didn’t understand their comment.
But, now I get it. It wasn’t that they couldn’t understand, rather it’s just that they had more experience to know that it’s not a scary illness. But they only have that experience because they too had probably rushed their own child to the hospital and/or were consumed with worry over something that scared them at one point too.
I realized that with more time as parents, we do start to learn what’s scary and what’s not so scary. We also start to learn when to be cautious and when not to be.
And, I have to say, I’m pretty darn glad that I am able to learn these parenting things, even if it means I get puked on from time to time.
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