Thursday, December 6, 2012

Getting back to reality

After 5 weeks in hospital I was finally released on Tuesday. It would be nice to say that I am a healthy little Vegemite with a clean bill of health, but I still have a gazillion follow up appointments and the prospect of bowel surgery in February ahead of me. I still don't have a diagnosis, but they are treating me for Crohn's Disease and so far I seem to be responding.

This is my reality now: A million tablets to choke down each day. Hopefully this is just the short term treatment run because I HATE swallowing tablets.
Husband had yesterday off so that I could take it a bit easy and also help the run all the little tasks that were already lined up for the day before we knew I would be out. I ran us both ragged with all the errands that have been building up and itching at me in hospital, but I can't begin to say how much I ENJOYED them.
Yesterdays temperature was stunning. Beautiful sunny day with a nice breeze to offset it. Husband couldn't understand how much I love just walking around the outdoor mall but I haven't been outside properly in weeks so it was just so damn nice.
My little newborn boy Seb is not such a newborn anymore. I've had 2 nights to get to know him again, and he is an adorable, solemn little owl until his face creases up into big gummy smiles. I hurt so much that I missed the transition from newborn to infant, but I'm loving getting to know him again.
Little 18 month Lolly didn't seem to miss me so much while I was in hospital. Sucks to say, but she had good care, loving grandparents, father and sister looking after her, so while she was always happy to see me on her little visits, she didn't really pine for my absence. Which I guess is a good thing, although the ego in me might have been more gratified if she had.
But today I sent her off for her preschool day with her hair in two cute pigtails (they only fit in one before I went to hospital), after having her trot around the house after me as though I was never gone. My inquisitive little toddler has been showing me all her new baby tricks (dear lord she can climb on the dining room chairs now) and I seem to fit seamlessly back into her little world as though I was never gone.
It's my big girl, my almost but not quite 12 year old who has missed me most. While in hospital she has alternated between being heartbreakingly grownup about the reality of a sick mother, helping her father with the kids and house, trying to be more independent, trying to understand why mum can't be pulling the strings of her life, and being angry at me for being sick.
She never said so, but at times in burst out in angry words, or naughty inexplicable behaviour, sullenness or stubbornness, traits that are really not that normal for her. She even shouted at me on the phone one night that I clearly didn't love her since I was supporting Dad in his insistence of normal bedtimes in my absence. For all that she is a big girl, she is still my little girl, and she has been hurting while I've been away.
Of all my kids, she can't seem to get enough of having me home. When I smear the tomato sauce on her sandwich the way she likes, fussed with her hair for school, wake her up by crawling into bed for snuggles in the morning, all this she laps up. I didn't realise it was these things that she would miss most, but I guess those are the things that creative memories and feelings and responses in their lives. My best memories of childhood are little things too, so I shouldn't have been surprised.
Today my reality is that I am on my own for the first with Seb, with so much housework to start getting into. Husband and Maddy kept up with the basics, but the house looks like a bomb site with anything that has been put down somewhere in the last 5 weeks pretty much staying there while the two of them vacuumed or cleaned around it.


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