May 08, 2010

Welcome to the Neighborhood

I know that a few out there wondered due to the severe gap between posts if we survived the pantry experiment. The answer, barely. We did it though, and ate through all of the reject cans and our move happened without any boxes of food in tow. We are slowly getting settled in our new home and my new leaf is unfolding as my pantry has a scarce single layer of food across the shelves.

We love our new home, and adore our new neighborhood. But how do you really make a splash in your new neighborhood -- one that makes others say, "Oh, they are going to be THAT kind of neighbor"? Well, you call in a ambulance, a ladder truck, a fire-rescue suburban and two police cars with sirens blaring to your home at 11:00 at night. Really, we only called in the ambulance, everything else that followed was just bonus.

Bridger had a fever hit hard hard and fast Wednesday night. I put him to bed and allowed him a couple hours for his tube feed to settle before I went to give him some Motrin. When I entered his room I found him gurgling, blueish, unresponsive and covered in vomit. I called up Alan and quickly dialed 911. We lifted his limp body gently out of bed and laid him on the floor where he proceeded to turn even more blue, breathing grow more labored and he went into full seizure convulsions. The ambulance finally arrived and we hurried off to the hospital. The seizure lasted for several hours despite a cocktail of medications to try to get it to stop. Finally some paralysis drugs were given to halt the seizure. Bridger was not able to breath on his own so they had to intubate him. Because he aspirated so much of the vomit he had an acute pneumonia. They then life flighted him to another hospital where he was placed in the PICU. The seizure finally stopped and several hours later he began breathing on his own.

He is stable now, although he isn't able to control any of his muscles or hold his head up and occasionally can open his eyes to just little slivers. He did contract a secondary infection in his lungs due to being intubated. That combined with the pneumonia he is still fighting makes breaths still a struggle, fevers still lurking and muscles very weak. He has offered us a couple of the cutest, weak little smiles from him that are the most precious sight you will ever see.

And there I sat today watching this little guy while the cd player in his room sang the lullaby, "Baby Mine". I can put my tough mom face on and push through quite a lot. But play that song and my vulnerability will get to me.

Baby mine, don't you cry.
Baby mine, Dry your eyes.
Rest your head close to my heart,
Never to part, baby of mine.
Little one, when you play
Don't you mind what they say.
Let those eyes sparkle and shine
Never a tear, baby of mine.
If they knew sweet little you
They'd end up loving you too.
All those same people who scold you
What they'd give just for the right to hold you.

From your head down to your toes
You're not much, goodness knows.
But you're so precious to me
Sweet as can be, baby of mine.
So now I prepare for another holiday in the hospital tomorrow. I've never appreciated those Hallmark commercials for fear that they are warping every mother to think that Mother's Day is about wearing your tiara, rolling out the red carpet and presenting your list of wants and wishes for your "special day". I have been a mother for 8+ years now and I enjoy my trays of cold eggs, warm milk and other breakfast delights that I eat in bed while making scrumptious sounds for the eager eyes of little chefs watching and I have a darling husband who knows that little black velvet boxes are really fun. But Mother's Day is not all about what those wise marketeers suggest. As I watched Bridger's little body be loaded up on the helicopter, as I watched with hope and faith as he fought through the life threatening challenges he faced, as I fought back the tears hearing my other children express their concern and love for him (and their pure excitement for him, not jealousy, that he got to ride in a helicopter), as I cleaned up the vomit of the stomach flu that hit our homefront here this morning (which always seems to happen when we are in the hospital), as I experienced a lot of hugs, love, smiles in between, I was reminded that Mother's day is not about being a queen for a day. Along with recognizing my own wonderful mother, Mother's Day is reflecting on all of the reasons I am a changed, gentler, wiser, more humble, patient, more faithful, stronger and better person because I am a mom. And I am so grateful that I am.