Thursday, October 06, 2011

Bright Sides

Here are the happier things I’m reminding myself of now that I’m facing a three-week hospital stay.

First, we’re lucky to have health insurance; one thing I’m not worrying about right now is how we’ll pay for everything. I can’t imagine coming here, tests flying right and left, and dreading the bills to come.

Second, we’re lucky I’m already 34 weeks along; the baby is doing well and though extra cooking time will be best, she will be okay if she decides she’s had enough of the womb.

And third, we’re lucky Mom could come to stay with us and take care of Lucia. No amount of motherly pride wants Lucia to be miserable in my absence, and “Gra’s” appearance yesterday thrilled Lucia. A nurse told me she’s heard suddenly hospital-bound women trying to hire nannies over the phone, so we’re lucky that Lucia is in such good hands.

All of this is good and bright. But it’s still hard to be here, not because it’s boring and tedious—it is, but I have lots of things to do—but because it is just completely awful to be away from Lucia. Of course, it’s hard to be away from Andrew, too, but Andrew understands why I’m here, knows it’s not about him, knows I love him and haven’t abandoned him, and realizes I’ll be home once it’s all over. My stay here is hard on him, but it’s not psychologically damaging.

Lucia, on the other hand, must certainly wonder why Mama is suddenly just gone. She’s been handling everything very well, having fun with Daddy and Grandma, and I’m the only one crying when she leaves after coming for a visit; but still it’s awful to see her for only an hour or so a day when for the past two years I’ve been apart from her for no more than a couple of hours a week. I worry that my sudden absence is going to damage her sense of stability, security, and trust, as though everything she loves and depends on could be gone at any second.

So far, she shows no signs of being distraught. She happily chats with me on the phone and cuddles when she’s here, and when I call home to check in I can hear her babbling and playing in the background. But still. I will be so glad to get home and get back to normal. I’d give anything right now to be in a battle of wills over getting her to eat just one more bite of dinner.

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