This is not a pithy post

I don’t know how many people have picked up on it, but I have an overactive mind. I think about everything and then go back and over-think it. It makes me often come off as a rambling fool, but there it is.

So what has bounced around the corners of my mind lately? The birth of my son. Generally when babies are born, it is a time of celebration and love and joy and general merriment is had by all. And I know all these feelings will be felt when my son is born, but I also know that I will feel anxious, upset, stressed, angry, and sad.

As birth comes closer so does reality. My son will be taken from my arms (if I am blessed enough to hold him after birth, so he may be taken straight from my womb) and rushed across the street by a team of specialists to the NICU in the children’s hospital. Once there, an IV will be inserted into him giving him drugs to keep the hole between his right and left chamber open keeping him alive until surgery.

Five to ten days after he is born, my baby will experience open heart surgery. Unfathomable. How does a baby survive that trauma? I know it happens, but it is hard to believe that it does.

And right now I am not even focusing on the surgery. I am focusing on the two days when I will be apart from my son. The two terribly long days when I will be in the hospital across the street and he will be in a NICU. I am so scared about what will happen in those two days.

I am most scared about him dying (how could I not be), but that is not the only thing I am fearful of.

I don’t like the idea of other people touching Emer before me. I am afraid he won’t attach to me and that our bond will never be solidified. Now realistically, infants fail to bond with parents when they are consistently neglected. A four-month old who has never been held by their mom will have attachment and trust issues that will carry on throughout development. If I can’t see my child the first two days, it may take longer, but I know I will attach. I will not let my baby sit in a crib alone for 4 months (or more). Yet the instant bond that happens between a mother and child is so hyped up and so reinforced in all developmental theory that I still fear my son will not attach and then will continuously struggle with attachment.

My other fear is that he will attach to someone else as his “mother”. I am sure it is selfish of me, but I don’t want anyone else to touch him (outside of my husband and medical staff) until I get to spend time with him. It would break my heart if he preferred someone else more than me, even if it was just initially. I would really feel like I failed as a mom. Isn’t it amazing how easy it to “fail” as a parent? Or at least feel like you failed.

Anyway my fear of him attaching to someone else is eclipsed by the guilt I feel for even thinking of deny my son the touch of another person. Isn’t it better that he is touched than I am the one touching him? Isn’t any human contact better than none regardless of what I think could happen?

I just don’t know. I want my baby to be safe and loved and comforted. And I want to be the one loving and comforting and protecting him. But that won’t happen at first. Luckily I have an amazing partner who won’t leave our son’s side until I can get there. Everything is easier knowing Matt is there to help.

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7 thoughts on “This is not a pithy post

  1. If delivery goes well they might let you wheel over to childrens to see your baby. I’m thinking there will be special privileges for you so you can be with him

  2. Wow, do I ever remember all of these horrible feelings. A friend of mine had a little girl 3 months before Blake and I cried and cried to my sister about how happy that birth was and how mine would not be like that. My best advise it to push and push the nurse to take you to Children’s as soon as possible. I spent as much time with Blake as possible and didn’t really worry much about being in my room. You continue to be in my prayers, please let me know if you need anything.
    Cynthia

    1. Please remember we are there for you and Matt always. For support. For anything you might need.
      Also remember: there is One who loves him more than ALL of us….and He will be with him, holding him in His arms through it all, loving , comforting and protecting him.
      Don’t forget how good He is!
      And there WILL be celebration, love, joy and merriment! Even
      Emerson is a treasure! YOUR treasure to share with the world. Thank you for this wonderful gift. We cannot wait to meet him.
      Love, Millie 🙂

      1. Please ignore the ‘even’ ~ it was part of a song quote I started to throw in and decided against~ certainly do not mean ” even Emerson is a treasure” !!!!!!!!!

  3. For the first year of Max’s life he was touched very little and when he was….it wasnt by me or Rob. Jack was hugged/touched by many different caregivers for the first 18 months of his life, never by me or Rob. Once we adopted them, they attached to us almost immediately. We do not have any attachment issues. It will be fine. Dont focus on that, it’s not going to happen; he will attach to you…focus and pray on what will happen.
    Vickie

  4. Maria,
    One possible idea: could you check with the NICU staff to see if you can send a blanket that you’ve slept with along with Emerson so that he’ll have your smell with him until you can get there?
    Thinking of you and sending prayers for you, Matt and Emerson.

  5. That is totally something you can do. If you look at pictures of Blake after he was born he is snuggling with a little lovey and I slept with that little lamb every night for about a month before he was born. The staff at Children’s are awesome about doing what they can for you to feel close to your baby and for baby to feel close to you.

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