An Ordinary Night

I just gave the babies a bath (with bubbles and colors, of course!) and carefully brushed out Juli’s hair, just like I have done so many times before. Tonight seems like an ordinary night.

Everyone is in warm jammies and ready for bed.

Nobody is crying or screaming. Nobody is scaring us with their lack of tears while crying. Nobody is throwing up. Nobody is unresponsive when I ask a question.

It just seems like an ordinary night…

With the sheer amount of stress chemicals that have flooded my nervous system for the past week, this sudden return to normalcy is jarring, a shock to the system. I still feel like I’m in “fight or flight” mode. There are no life and death decisions to be made tonight, only the choice between Minnie Mouse or Hello Kitty pajamas (she chose HK, by the way).

I was combing Juliette’s hair, reflecting on how long it’s getting, how beautifully soft it is, looking at her funny little cowlicks in the back, just thinking…..”what if I never got to do this again?”

What if? What if? What if?

I could have lost her.

A friend had commented on my facebook post that her son had once also been hospitalized for a week with dehydration due to a stomach virus, and that it hadn’t really hit her emotionally until they got him home. I think that is where I am right now. It’s hitting me now.

I could have lost my baby girl.

I had no idea, when I picked Lennon up from school on Thursday afternoon and he handed me a note scrawled on a red post-it that said, “Lennon threw up at school today. Just thought you should know so you can keep an eye on him…”

I had no idea that this would set off a chain reaction of events which would include all three of my children becoming so violently ill and so dehydrated that over a span of several days, we would have three separate ER trips for IV fluids, and Juliette would be transferred to Children’s Hospital, poked 21 times in search of a usable vein, and be unable to walk on her own or get out of bed for several more days.

Can I just say that my husband was AMAZING through all of this?  He was.  Truly amazing.  He even took care of me – as well as the babies – the one night that it was my turn to puke my guts out (and have massive panic attacks due to my emetophobia).  Even though I have felt a bit disconnected from him during this whole ordeal, since we were alternating shifts at the hospital while the other slept or took care of the boys, this whole experience has brought us closer together.

All five of us are back together as a family again.  My babies are all here with me right now.  We are home.  There is laundry to do (oh, so much laundry), phone calls to make, work and therapy and school to go back to.  Yes, it just seems like an ordinary night.  Things are returning to “normal.”

Why do I feel like I may never be the same?

{ Image is a profile view of Juliette, sleeping in her bed at Children’s Hospital, next to a rainbow-colored sock monkey that was given to her by her Nana.  She looks impossibly beautiful.  ❤ }



2 thoughts on “An Ordinary Night

  1. I’m so glad everyone is back home and on the mend! Your broken heart will mend, but this will always stay in the back of your mind. Great big hugs! Don’t forget to let yourself have a good cry! I think Mom mode doesn’t allow us to feel the fear and the “what ifs” because we need to be strong for the kids. But the emotional fall out after certainly is hard to deal with.

    Wish I could hug you for real!


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