Tuesday, June 12, 2012

I don't have bugs down there

Since I have arrived at the hospital 16 (or is it 17?) days ago every doctor and nurse I've seen has given me the same three pieces of advice.

1. Drink a lot of water.
2. Rest a lot.
3. Keep your perineum clean.

I'm fine with the first two pieces of advice but the last one always makes me a little uncomfortable. First off because the word is awkward and always evokes and image that I am not really at ease with. Secondly because it makes me wonder if they're saying that because I look like the sort of woman who would neglect her hygiene in that one very particular area. It makes me feel very defensive and I want to say "Oh, believe me! I keep my perineum clean! There is no slacking in that department!" but I have a sneaking suspicion that would only make things worse.

So I try to look very serious and interested and totally unoffended when I get The Perineum Talk. I'm an adult. I am completely at ease discussing the area between my you-know-what and my whoo-ha. I've even developed what I call Perineum Face which is similar to Poker Face in that it doesn't give away what I am really thinking. ("Shut up shut up shut up oh my god shut up!")

Then! Last night the humiliation reached a new high. Or low. Whatever humiliation reaches. A nurse who I do not like came walking into my room. (Back story - I love 99% of the nurses here but this one in particular really gets under my skin. In fact I have asked for her to not be assigned to me which created a lot of Uncomfortable Feelings for me and made me be a lot more assertive than I usually like to be but it had to be done. The first time I met this nurse was when she barged into my room without knocking, called me by the wrong name and ignored my protests that I was not, in fact, Cecily and started to give me discharge instructions.) So the fact that this nurse was even in my room (again without knocking) annoyed me. The fact without any preface she handed me a small water bottle confused me. I was horrified by what she said next.

"You can use this to clean up after you go to the bathroom. It will help keep all the bugs off your vagina."

I made a noise like this "Uhhhhg... bu....va.....gah!"

The nurse smiled and left the room.

Now I've been here two weeks and no one has given me any advice like this up to this point. I would kind of think that if I needed Vagina Bug Repellent someone would have mentioned it already. So I am choosing to believe that the water bottle was actually meant for someone else, Cecily perhaps, and this afternoon I used it to water my plants.

Friday, June 01, 2012

Parenting from afar

Elle is hovering around my bed and eying the food on my tray. "What's that taste like Mama?" she asks about the cheesy noodle casserole I've been served for dinner. I give her a taste and she smiles and hops back and forth from one foot to another. Before you know it she's eaten half of my dinner. Casserole, broccoli and a dinner roll served on a tray in bed are fun when you're six. After I let her finish my butterscotch pudding she climbs up onto my bed and curls up around me.

Joseph has no interest in my dinner but he sits in the chair next to my bed and keeps up an endless stream of chatter about cartoons and Big Nate books and this girl in his class who tries to boss him around. In the middle of his speech he pauses and says "I like being around you" and then goes right back to what he was saying.

It is breaking my heart to be away from the kids. I know that they're ok, that they're taken care of. Jesse and my parents are taking care of everything they need. It's not the same though. They need me. I need to be there for them. I'm missing end of school year events. As I type this Joseph is doing a stand up routine in his school talent show and I have to be here in bed. If I was there I could cheer him on and wave to Elle when she searched the auditorium for me.

In theory I could be in this room for another five weeks. That's the best case scenario. I give Baby A plenty of time to grow big and strong and then I deliver when I'm 34 weeks pregnant. I can't help but hate it a little bit that in order to give this baby the best I have to be away from my babies. Of course I do the best I can from this bed. My parents and Jesse had brought the kids to visit several times. We talk on the phone. We've skyped. It's not the same though. I want to be home. I want to be the one to brush Elle's hair in the morning. I want to be the one to remind Joseph that it's 80 degrees out and that he doesn't need a long sleeved shirt on. I want to be the one to make dinner and then hear the whines about the weird new vegetable I'm serving.  I want to smell Elle when she comes inside from playing in the garden and she smells like dirt and chives. I want to hear Joseph when he finds a funny Harry Potter mash up video on youtube that makes him do his crazy falling down giggle.

I want to go home to my children,