Monday, April 30, 2012

Mommies Should Earn Badges

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At least I think so. 
Kind of like how Girl Scout's earn badges for their experiences and sacrifices. 
Mommies should earn badges too.

If mommies could earn badges, I strongly believe I would have earned one today. 

Sofia has been battling an allergy for almost a month now. It first reared it's ugly head when I introduced whole milk, so mainly because I know nothing about allergies, I assumed it was a lactose intolerance and put her on Lactaid -- which she seems to not have a reaction to. However, once I did the research I realized that her symptoms where more congruent with a milk allergy and not a lactose intolerance. If you have a milk allergy you are allergic to one of the proteins in milk, which are also in Lactaid, so for this reason Sofia's allergy has become a strange case. 

So after a thorough inspection of her body, looking at the pictures I took and hearing the list of her symptoms, the specialist confirmed that she does indeed have a significant allergy to something. Now we are just trying to find out what she is allergic to. In the meantime, I am removing all milk products from her diet to see if we see a real improvement.
She was prescribed an EpiPen, which is terrifying as all get out. The thought of using it really shook me up. It's not that the EpiPen itself is terrifying or that using it is terrifying, it is that my perfect little baby may someday need this. That is terrifying. 

So yes, this was all very emotionally taxing, but none of it is the reason that I should have earned a Mommy Badge. 

Our Allergist sent Sofia in for blood work to get a better idea of what exactly her immune system is reacting to. 

My dear sweet one year old getting her blood drawn - that is why I should have earned a Mommy Badge.

 I remember being terrified for Sofia to get her first shots, after today the memory of that seems so ridiculously minor and trivial to what we just went through. I drove all the way to Thousand Oaks because I was told it was the best place for a toddler to get blood work done and I will tell you right now it was the best decision I ever made because anywhere else (that I have been at least) would have compounded the pain and fear.

So I sat down, I held Sofia. I had to hold her arm perfectly still. Needle went in. Sofia turned into a wild animal trapped, in fear for her life, she started screaming and writhing and well, I'm just so darn lucky she didn't pull her arm out of the socket. I had to hold that arm so tight so that it wouldn't move because it had a needle stuck in it that I won't be surprised if she has a bruise tomorrow. Not to mention, I can't imagine with all the tensing up and flailing that her vein wasn't collapsed from the trauma. 
She turned purple, with tears and snot running down her face. Her hair was wet with sweat. I just about lost it. Seeing my little baby that terrified killed me, it hurt me in a way that I haven't felt since she was 2 days old and in the NICU with a pneumothorax. It hurt way down deep. I actually started to feel panic in my gut. Now I am a very logical person, but I'm telling you, the Momma Lion in me started to come out. 
That was tough stuff right there. 

Now, just like everything, she got over it way faster than I did. I cuddled that little girl up, kissing and hugging every part of her body. I must of held her tight to me for five minutes after that just trying to calm myself down. She was already over it and wanting to move on to something else. Ha!
I put her in the truck, gave her some granola and water and she was a happy camper the whole way home. She looks pretty cute with her little bandaged arm too. 
But Mom, well, Mom is still on edge from the whole experience. 
So really, where the heck is my Mommy Badge man? 

I know this is the beginning of many moments like these - from fevers to broken arms. I don't know if I will ever get used to seeing my little cub in pain. I don't think you can, at least I hope you can't. I hope I never have to get "used to it." There are so many parents out there fighting for little babies suffering from life threatening illnesses. The emotions I went through today brought that home for me. I thought, how silly am I? Feeling this angst over something like the momentary trauma of misunderstood pain. Not to trivialize it, it was a very hard experience for me and it did give me the smallest taste of the weight of some parent's lives. There are mommies out there kissing the sweet sweaty foreheads of dying babes. Now that pain goes deeper than I hope I'll ever have to imagine. 

So even if this moment was just to remind me that every minute is fleeting and that this little babe is my most precious gift from that great God of ours, a little piece of my heart,  it was worth the pain and anguish.

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