Today is the 5th day since my Dad and Step Mom left for their vacation. They held off by almost a month so that they could come to town and take care of me. It was a huge help and a huge show of support, for which I am eternally grateful. These past five days have been tough. Is it possible to forget how to be a mom? I mean, seriously, I've been changing diapers, feeding, bathing, and caring for my child for almost a year and a half only to have all my knowledge seemingly vanish within 3 weeks. Let me tell you a story...
Mike, Gwen and I all went to the mall on Dec 27th to exchange a couple of items that were of the wrong size. Unfortunately, my size feet seem to be the most common, so I couldn't exchange these adorable fuzzy slipper boots that Mike had got me for Christmas. Pooey! At any rate, we decided that we would grab a smoothy for lunch. Gwen loves smoothies and she hadn't had one in a long while. As we wander up to an electronics store to check out their sales, Gwen starts fidgeting. We're thinking she's a little bored because she's been in her stroller for a bit by this point. We wander around a bit more, but once she finishes the smoothy, she starts getting out right cranky. Mike takes her out of the stroller to let her walk around a bit, only to find that her bottom is wet. Now, I'm not just talking slightly damp; I'm talking soaked-through-almost-going-down-her-legs-and-up-her-back WET. I start thinking to myself, "Wow, that doesn't look like a simple defective diaper". No sir-ee-bob, it was full on parental neglect! I hadn't even thought to change her diaper before we left for the mall and then I totally forgot to check her as we did our shopping. It had been 3 weeks where I didn't have to think about any diaper changing, food making, or bed time routine. I had forgotten how to be a Mom! I felt so bad, and so embarrassed. How could I forget to check a diaper! It's just plain silly. The really terrible thing is that we didn't even have her diaper bag with us. It was out in the vehicle. Gwen had to hang out in the family bathroom semi-nude while Mike ran to get her diapers and spare clothes. She was very cheerful about it all though. The more I think about it, the more I am glad that she will not remember this time in our lives. Maybe she won't hold it against me the amount of times I screwed up as a Mom during my cancer fight.
We have now started getting back into a routine. I think it's startling Mike's system a little bit to be waking up with Gwen in the mornings. I think it's nice that we all wake up as a family. The fact is, I still need help (yes, laugh all you want at that!). I need someone to help me with the daily tasks of taking care of a child. I can't lift Gwen yet, which I proved last night. We worked out a system where Gwen could climb up onto our bed and sleep there so that I didn't have to pick her up out of her crib while Mike was at work. Well, that system only works if Gwen decides to go to sleep and not climb down off the bed to go play well past bed time. Yes, she played and then became over tired and then threw a tantrum on the floor as I tried to get her back to the bedroom. This required a small amount of Gwen lifting, which I am now regretting. I strained something internally. Not sure if it's muscular or intestinal. I'm thinking muscular, but man, it hurts today. I even had to take some pain medication, which makes me feel somewhat depressed because it feels like I'm going backwards in my healing process. Thank the Lord that my Mom is coming out in a few days! I can rest a bit more and heal up.
I also just received an appointment with an oncologist. January 10th I'll be going in to the cancer clinic to check out my options. I am very wary of chemotherapy. I am dreading making this upcoming decision. My thoughts are basically this: I don't want to pump toxic poison through my system, but I'm also afraid not to. Chemo is so terrible. It really is a harsh, harsh treatment. I don't want to die in 20 years of something that the chemo caused when I may have lived 40 years if I hadn't done the chemo. Now, on the other hand, I don't want to die in 5 years because I didn't do chemo and the cancer came back in a place that was inoperable. I feel like I'm about to walk into a casino to make the highest stake gamble that there is: life or death. In the end, we all die though. We never know when our time will come. I could spend all this time worrying about what the chemo and cancer could do to me, only to be run over by a truck tomorrow! We never know, and I suppose there is no sense worrying too much about it. I just pray that the right information and the right people come my way to help me make the best decision possible.
And, when all this "life" stuff starts getting me down, all I have to do is remember one thing: I CAN POO!!!! (and it feels GREAT)
P.S. I just had a thought. I used the word "Pooey" as a negative word in my blog today. I am going to reclaim the words "Poo", "Shit","Crap", and all their forms. Why do we use these words as negatives when they are in fact some of the most positive things we can be doing? Excrement has a bad rap. It is the waste of the body, sure, but if you don't poo, you DIE. It is as essential to our existence as breathing, eating and sleeping. Yet, we don't say, "Oh breath!" or "Oh, sleep!" when we are hurt or angry. Why do we use the word poo? Is it the stench? Has the smell given fecal matter it's bad reputation? Whatever the cause, I say we RECLAIM the word! Who is with me?!!!!