What's a mommy to do when she's hurt and with her little ones...?
|Teddy Bear Hospital by Christaan Triebert|
The first time we went to L&D poor EG had to go with us. Working Dad came home early, took one look and said we need to leave now. She saw me throw-up at least twice, not to mention seeing all the doctors and nurses come in and take measurements and poke and prod me. She understands the doctor, and could say "we take mommy doctor" as well as "mommy no feel good today" but it's so hard to try to keep up a brave face when you're in pain for your little one.
Granted, she was amazing- didn't cry, fuss or otherwise make a scene. Listened to Daddy when he told her not to touch things, and she was only there two hours out of the seven that Mommy was.
That was followed-up by two regular trips to the doctor. She had the week off from school and my weekly appointments happened to fall when she was out- so to the doctor we went. She sat next to me in the office, patting my hand, making sure I was okay. Looking from the doctor to me with her curious eyes. Turns out OBGYN has some stickers, so those visits ended nicely.
Then came yesterday, with my pulled groin. Such a nice and mild day turned into an ambulance ride and 4 hours in the ER/L&D. Thankfully EG wasn't with me at the time, but when she gets home Mommy can't pick her up to play- I can't even get to the bathroom without using a walker...
So, after all of these experiences, here are my tips and tricks for Hospital/Doctor Visits with your kiddo:
1. Don't be afraid to use hospital resources as toys. This includes the boxes of tissues (they love pulling them out one at a time), the wooden sticks they put down your throat, and the hospital tray, which makes a really great table for coloring. Of course, limit this to what's appropriate, which I would say doesn't include a blood pressure cuff, thermometer or any other type of monitoring equipment.
2. Don't be afraid to feel your pain. I was amazed at how well EG did when she realized that I wasn't feeling well, and how unafraid she was of my pain. I was probably most worried about that- since I hated for her to see me not feeling well and in pain. But the reality is that she knows what a boo-boo is, and when we explain in terms she knows, she completely understands and wants to help.
3. Call in back-up. There's no way around the fact that the ER isn't a great place for your kiddo. As soon as it looks like you might be there a while, or that there are tests to run, try to get the kiddo out of there. In our case Working Dad left me in L&D and took EG home to our house where our parents were able to give her dinner and put her to bed. Last night she was picked up at daycare by my cousins. Don't be afraid to give friends/classmates a call. There are LOTS who are willing to help if you let them know.
4. Do what's best for your body. Last night was awful- with Working Dad giving bath, doing all of bedtime and me sitting on the couch. You want to spend time with your kiddo, and yesterday I got all of 7 minutes. But the reality is that the sooner I heal, the sooner I'm back to playing and enjoying our time together. So really really really try to let yourself take the time you need. A few days of inactivity is vastly better than a week of ongoing issues.
5. Try not to stress. I was completely stressing about how all of this would effect EG, but the reality is that kids are really resilient. She understands more than we give her credit for, and really can get over things much easier than we realize. Stress also isn't good when your sick, so knowing that your little will bounce back can be a huge weight lifted as well.
Have you had some trying incidents while taking care of your little one?