C had an appointment with the Ear, Nose and Throat doc yesterday. The doctor visits tend to be my thing. Because when Z goes I expect him to have perfect recall when it comes to every word the doc has uttered. I expect him to ask specific questions and write down the answers. I expect him to intuit which follow up questions the answers would make me want to ask. For some reason he feels all that is a little too much pressure…I know, right? It’s like he thinks I’m unreasonable! Um, yes. Take a moment to feel grateful you aren’t my spouse.
Because this was a specialist doc visit we got a letter in the mail saying when they could see us. The timing didn’t work out for a number of reasons so I called to reschedule. She gave me a date that was another month away, and the time still didn’t work. I told her he’d be there for the original appointment. I was in class. The babysitter picked T up from school. And Z took C to the doctor’s.
Do you guys remember when I was freaking out about missing Halloween with the boys last fall because my class fell on the evening of the 31st? This situation is bringing up the same feelings. A big part of me thinks I should have just skipped the class, that I’m a shit Mom for not taking him myself. Somehow I think as a Stay At Home Mom I need to be there for every single moment of their lives. Or perhaps more accurately, I think if I’m not there for every moment people with think I’m a lazy and awful SAHM because it is my job, after all.
My class meets twice a week this semester from 2-3:15pm. So twice a week a babysitter comes and I have a 20 minute walk alone both to and from campus. Twice a week Z picks T up from school. Twice a week I get to think about something other than being T and C’s mom, I get to learn about a topic that I feel passionate about. Twice a week I get to miss the boys. Do you know how good that feels? Particularly after last fall when I felt so suffocated and needed a break desperately.
My patience for my guys has increased dramatically since the start of the semester. I don’t yell as much, I can do a better job listening when T is frustrated. We are having more fun together. Yet I feel guilty about taking the time for class, I feel like I’m stealing their time. I need to remember that by taking some time away I’m able to give them quality in return. I also need to remember that no one in my life has accused me of being a shit Mom for taking a class. I’m bringing that to the party all on my own.
Z wasn’t scheduled to teach during the visit to the doctor’s office. He was able to take C without much of an impact to his work day. It made all the sense in the world for me to attend my class while Z handled the appointment. Z is C’s parent. He is responsible for doctor office visits, too. I know all this in my head. Z knows it as well, the plan seemed completely reasonable to him. So why do I still feel so guilty? Why do I feel like I am a selfish person for asking Z to help me so I don’t miss class? Why did I have my first full blown anxiety attack in almost two weeks last night after the class and visit?
I know a large part of it goes back to being unwell emotionally. It’s the reason I apologize for everything. No matter how little space I try and take up in this world I constantly feel like I’m in someone else’s way. No matter how small I make myself it is never small enough. I don’t want to teach my sons to be small. I don’t want them to feel like they are in the way. I don’t want to teach them that I am small, I want them to respect the women in their lives and the space that they occupy. So I will try and remember that the class is making me a better Mom. I’ll try and remember that Z was happy to do his part.
Speaking of Z, he did an awesome time at the docs. The upshot is C does need tubes. The practice is slammed so it looks like he won’t get them until late March, although we’ll get a firm date next week. I do not want my kid to be put under anesthesia. I really don’t. But I also don’t want him to be on antibiotics every few weeks. It scares the hell out of me. And his pediatrician is awesome, she won’t put him on the meds unless he has a raging infection. But the thing is he always seems to have a raging infection. And beyond the worries of creating strains of infections that do not respond to treatment we also don’t want him on drugs because they give him terrible diarrhea. While that totally makes him fit in at our house it also makes trying to put a little weight on him a terrible struggle. He was an extremely late walker. He also only says a few words. We are hoping the tubes help his balance and hearing.
We know several families who have gone through the procedure. And Z had them either 5 or 6 times when he was young. My nephew has benefited tremendously from them-no infections. And our neighbor’s speech has exploded since his were put in. That is what I’m focusing on. He’ll have a rough day, but we are helping him in the long run.