I'd like to buy and "E" please, Vanna.

"E" is for Emergency Room. Last week or maybe last year, or hey, maybe it was yesterday Sam was running up and down the driveway with his shoes that are a size too big so he has room to grow and with the coordination of, well, a one year old. Our driveway has a lot of cracks and dips and slighty slants down toward the house. This scene had disaster written all over it from the start. At any rate, he made one of those split decisions to assume that you were calmly walking toward him to chase him, as one year olds tend to do. While he was "running away", he slipped and fell on our driveway. I cannot get the sound of his forehead hitting concrete out of my brain. Now some first time moms may agree that sometimes you make decisions because you want to act like the right kind of mom and not go with your first instinct. You care a lot what other mothers think about your split second decision making...unless you are a new mom. A brand new, two month old baby in the house, no good sleep since month four of your pregnancy mom will take a baby to the ER because the baby is crying. You don't care, you are delirious. But after the sanity kicks in, you decide the "type" of mom you want to be. My type? My type is probably the kind of mom who has 12 kids and can't afford to care about every little bump and scrape. I wanted to be the laid back mom. So in true, mom of 12 fashion, after Sam stopped crying, I had the "walk it off" mentality. Kids fall. They bump their heads. He's fine. Two minutes later, the swelling began. And it swelled. And it swelled. And my mom said, "maybe you should call the nurse? Shine a light in his eyes or something?" She was right. She's my mom. She's usually right. So good sense prevailed. I had to admit that even though I'm CPR certified (expired), I'm probably not qualified to make a judgement on the serious nature of a blow to the head. I do know my limits. The nurse was finally called.

Nurse help lines. Do you ever notice that you can be discussing something with them such as your child's recent fall in the driveway and they will throw in an unrelated and random question in the middle of the normal ones? Example: When did he fall? Where did he fall? What elementary school did you attend? How big is the knot on his head? Is he acting normal? What is the name of your maternal grandmother? It's as if she's assessing my son's condition and trying to hack into my bank account all at the same time. Weird.

The nurse finally said, "go to the hospital". I must have heard, "Pack your entire family and their belongings into a covered wagon and hit the Oregon trail, you are never coming home again." I wasn't sure how long I would have to keep a one year old happy in the ER. I packed three outfits, juice, ten diapers (well truthfully, I always carry that many diapers), 8 cars, a book, a Wiggles DVD (you never know), some snacks, baby tylenol, adult tylenol, a blanket, bedtime bunny, the Speak and Say. You get the picture. It was three bags worth of baby gear. I hadn't looked that ridiculous since the first holiday at someone's house after he was born.

Little did we know that we wouldn't be going to the ER with the gunshot victims and the people with shrapnel lodged in their bodies (as per my mom's concern because apparently she thought we were headed to the ER in Bagdad or Compton). Thank the Lord there was a Pediatric ER. A glorious part of the hospital unencumbered by sick adults and their germs. I felt a little better given that Sam does everything short of licking the floors when he's at the doctor and I let him because its the only time he'll stop crying.

So aside from the four hours of traumatic crying, the betrayed look in his eyes as I was pinning him down on the xray table and the fact that the only thing that held his interest was a sticker
on a door that said "biohazard", he ended up being fine. I was told to wake him up a few times at night, which I did. What I was supposed to be looking for, I'm not sure. But I woke him up and he preceeded to look at me each time like, "what the heck? Hasn't this day been hard enough, mom?" All in all, I'm glad I went. The doctor there that night even said to me as he was ushering me to the financial office to pay my $100 copay, "He's going to be around for 120 years, you don't want to take chances." To which I wanted to ask, "Will I be watching the Wiggles for that much longer?"

"E" is for Easter Egg Hunt. The pictures are from the Easter Egg Hunt at the Spring Fling. Of all the activities for the kids, Sam enjoyed flinging his hot dog at me, pushing his own stroller around and stalking the Easter Bunny the best. You can't buy memories like that. We stayed for 30 minutes and left. As we drove out of the church parking lot, I kissed my dream of getting cute pics of egg collecting goodbye. Maybe one day he'll understand mommy's need for the perfect photo opp. Maybe he was just mad because it was Easter and he had to wear corduroy and a jacket.

Happy Spring,
Sam's Mom

What's in Your Diaper bag?

I decided to list the things that are currently in Sam's diaper bag that I discovered last night:

10 diapers...In case I run into a colony of diaperless, size 5 butts I guess. I've changed Sam in a public place maybe twice in his life...yet I have ten diapers.

8 Tonka Cars...I've only ever pulled out two at any given location, but what if today is the day he desires variety...or wants to create a traffic jam.

4 Baby Mum Mums - He stopped eating mum mums four months ago, but what if he picks up the habit while I'm in the line at the bank? How could I afford to be so ill prepared?

A pacifier - He stopped using a pacifier in June. Please see explanation above.

Two pairs of pants, one single sock and a bib that's too small - for those change of clothes moments...somehow I feel that its optimistic to think he'll not dirty his shirt or that second sock.

One shoe - the other is currently in my purse here at work. Hope Andy knows where the other pair of shoes are.

3 travleler's cups of teddy grahams - I don't want to be there the day that those are missing.

A ziploc bag with cheese leftover from, what I'm hoping, was Thursday's lunch.

Various crumbs that get stuck under my finger nails when I search the bottom of the bag for something - I don't even want to know.

And finally, all of the caps to the bottles. I know this because every morning, I wonder why I can never find a cap to a bottle...then I went through the diaper bag.

Speaking of Moms...

So I just accepted my mother as a friend on Facebook. I'm amazed. I think my sister put her up to it. The other day she asked me how you can write things on the wall, and then write things behind the wall. Welcome to Facebook, mom. It's guaranteed to distract you from work, make you stay up too late and its, yet again, one more username and password you have to remember.

I was talking to a soon-to-be first time mom over email the other day and I shared with her something my mom said to me many times in the first few months of being a new mom. Plagued with insomnia and forcing myself to find the "inner maternal crystal ball" that I thought would fill me with instincts galore often left me frustrated, emotional and angry with myself. On more than one occasion I would find myself crying in one room of the house or another saying, "I don't know what I'm doing. I've never been a mother before." You see, I mistakenly thought I would have a baby and no questions. I would just know. (I'm holding my hands out, palms up pointer fingers and thumbs touching in the zen like fashion as I channel the mother wisdom in my soul). I didn't just know. Rarely do first time moms just know. If they just know...they are lying. Now I'm not talking about the "I just know he's sick." or the "I just know that fill-in-the-blank is not good for him." I'm talking about "It's day two home from the hospital and you actually think if you don't wake your baby up at hour three that he might starve to death." Moms, don't lie. You thought a bottle fifteen minutes late or crying that went on longer than 45 seconds warranted a trip the emergency room. I remember at five days old, when I guess the epidural wore off, Sam cried on and off all day. I remember looking at Andy baffled as he suggested we go to the hospital. What were we going to tell them? Our baby is crying? Is there a prescription for that? Maybe your first time mom thoughts weren't that. Maybe it was something else. But I'm sure all first time moms had a first time mom thought.

So back to my point. At my lowest times. At those moments when I felt like being an astronaut or a physicist might be easier than being a mom. When I would say, "I don't know what I'm doing, I've never been a mother before." My mom would grab my hand, look me in the eye and say, "That's okay...he's never been a baby before, and he thinks your doing a great job. And so do I."
Some days, only another mother can truly make you feel better.

So to my mother, who's now on Facebook, I love you and thanks. I think I'm getting the hang of this motherhood thing.
Your daughter and Sam's mom,