Friday, May 23, 2008

(f)ears


There is nothing worse as a parent than to see your child suffer and to know that you are powerless to ease the pain. Today it’s a nasty little bug, tomorrow it’s a broken heart — neither one can be cured with hugs and kisses, no matter how many you hand out.

The night of Coop’s birthday started a 6-day decent into baby-sickness hell (a ride that’s still going strong). The past few days have wreaked havoc on my every nerve … the exhausted one, the helpless one, the I-would-do-anything-to-make-the-pain-go-away one.

I’m more physically and emotionally drained from caring (and worrying!!!) for Coop, than I would have been if I had been the one who was sick. On Wednesday, 4 days into the “fun,” we were told it’s just a virus … blah diddy blah diddy blah. But, by this AM, after countless “lukewarm” cooling baths, an iceberg-like apartment, Tylenol/Motrin religiously dosed every three hours, 3.5 days off from work, tears and tears and tears and a second trip to the pediatrician, we found out that Coop has a double ear infection — who-hoo!

When the doc told us the diagnosis, you would’ve thought Chris and I had just won the lottery. “Yes! A diagnosis of SOMETHING!! Something that we can tackle, something we can fix!!”

It’s amazing how paranoid and powerless a parent can feel when you know there’s something wrong with your baby, but there’s not any one word that “fits.” You hope that the fever will spike when you walk in the doc’s office, just so someone with a degree and a stethoscope will “see” that you’re not just an alarmist mommy … that your little one needs more than TLC. It’s sad, really, how you begin to question your gut instinct when there’s not an easy fix.

Since Sunday, there has been very little time that Coop has not been in my arms. He has been so incredibly “mommy-want(y)” that it at once fills my heart, and breaks it. I love being the one he wants, the one he needs. I feel that for all of my missteps, all of my mommy mistakes, I must be doing something right if he chooses to cling to me when he feels vulnerable. It makes me feel like I finally have that mommy “thing” … that “thing” my mom has always had, that I have always clung to, even now, when I need to rest my weary soul. I love the way Coop feels when I hold him, his little arms clutching around my neck, his head burrowed into my shoulder. But I hate that it’s misery that has put him there. I know it’s “just” an ear infection, but when your child is suffering, it hurts your heart, no matter the cause.

I hope the “big boy” meds will help Coop get some sleep tonight … fever free would be a blessing. Chris and I already feel blessed that our fears … have turned out to be ears.

p.s. This pic was taken just as I finished writing the entry above … fever struck again, waking Coop up after only sleeping an hour. Sigh.

5 comments:

mimipam said...

our poor lil coopie...and mama and dada--I hope sat. morning brings some relief and rest for the weary souls. Seeing your child hurting IS the most helpless feeling a parent experiences...you are covered with prayers and the promise of a fresh new day's dawning. lovemimi

Leigh Attaway Wilcox said...

Poor little guy! Hang in there and keep doing all that you're doing, Mom and Dad. It is miserable when our little, tiny ones are in pain and can't communicate it.

Hugs to Cooper!

courtney said...

oh, poor baby!! i had an ear infection not too long ago and it was terribly painful. i have a whole new respect for our little ones who have them. i hope he gets better VERY soon!

Hulsey Fam said...

Tess,
I am so sorry Coop has been sick, I know it is just gut renching and so hard to deal with. Thanks for the sweet props on my letter to little man and yours was just as touching, you are so talented... if I had a publishing company you would be sooooo in girl:)

Sawatzky Kids said...

Oh man! sniff.... sniff.... I wish i would have checked your blog sonner we have been crazy busy here lately...I pray that by now the little man is well on the road to recovery but I am still sending up a prayer anyways! Ear infections are the worst especially that first one when you have no clue what is going on!
Prayer for healing, strength and peace for all three of you!
Shelly