Last night I went to Back to School Night at the elementary school. I was a bit panicky about how I was going to make 3 presentations in 3 different classes in 3 parts of the campus in just 2 sessions. I somehow made it, running through the rain and taking two steps at a time up the stairs. I triumphed in my success and jokingly called myself a rock star.
Then I had a conversation with another mom. She just had a baby a few weeks ago who was home with her husband. She said her third baby was really easy and flexible and it led to an interesting discussion about 3rd children and how they’re more easy going. It reminded me that my own 3rd child, Maddie, had to be flexible when I got sick and ended up in the hospital. That she easily adjusted to being taken care of by my parents, drinking from a bottle, and sleeping when they needed her to.
The woman I was talking to is a nurse, and when I told her my stats coming into the ER told me that it was “really bad.” I knew that already. I knew that they told me that if my husband had waited any longer it could have ended very badly. I figured that meant death, which would be the worst of course. This woman reminded me that there were other things that could have happened. She told me about this story, where a woman lost her limbs (all of them) after giving birth.
I thought about that for a long time. I couldn’t get over the fact that we had the same thing. Strep A. Mine started shutting down my kidneys, hers devoured her flesh.
As I sit here and type on my computer and push the button on my ipod, and drink my tea, and walk to the couch and pick up my knitting, I can’t imagine what a life without lifting my children when they’re sick or sad or afraid, without holding them in my lap and reading a book, without taking walks together and swimming together and giving piggy back rides.
I am thankful. I’m thankful things turned out the way they did. I’m thankful the disease was caught when it was. I’m thankful for my husband for overriding my decision not to go to the ER. I’m thankful for my parents for taking care of the kids. I’m thankful I can type and read and knit and run two stairs at a time to rush to back-to-school night. I’m thankful I’m here.