Friday, August 19, 2011

Getting Ready

Preparing for surgery is so similar to the process of getting ready to have a baby. First there’s the date.  You wonder, you wait, you hope, and ultimately it’s all up to someone else.  At least we know this date will stick…unless there’s an emergency that needs to go ahead of Daniel, or something drastic happens with him in the meantime.

Then there’s the logistics of it all.  You have to plan for someone to take the other kids, and to get them where they need to be.  And you wonder if they’ll have a lunch to take to school, if they’ll get their homework done, and if they’ll wear clean clothes.  Don’t forget about Activity Days and Cub Scouts in there too.  I look at everything that goes on in a week, and I wonder how we consistently get it done and keep it together!!

And there’s packing.  Stuff for parents: clothes, snacks, diversions, cameras, phones, computer.  Stuff for baby: blanket, bottles, toys, appropriate clothes.  (OK…so the list for the baby is different than when you’re having a baby, but you get the drift.)

There’s the whole emotional drama of the actual surgery (which we obviously haven’t been through yet…but I’m having plenty of emotional drama about it!) and being in the hospital.  I’ve done an extended hospital stay with a baby, so I know how emotionally exhausting it is.  Wonder.  Worry.  Hope.  The conflict of emotions is the tricky part.  Wanting to be there for the baby and feeling guilty that you’re away from everyone else at home.  And when you’re home with everyone else, you feel guilty about being away from the baby.

And then you come home with a “brand new” baby.  And life moves on.  And you forget the pain (so I’m told) and can look back and see the situation in true perspective – a tiny blip on the eternal radar.  I look at each of my kids, and yes…their births were big and important events.  Wonderful, happy and memorable.  (See, I’ve forgotten the pain!)  But they’re such a tiny piece of their lives.  A moment, really.  And as good as those moments were, the time going forward is even sweeter and more wonderful.  And that’s what I expect to happen after surgery.  We’ll look back on this time – at this moment – and we’ll have forgotten how difficult it was and we’ll appreciate the sweetness of Daniel’s life even more. 

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