On any given day normal sucks. Normal means a whole lot of busyness, chaos, non-stop movement (unless the kids are napping or on the rare occasion sitting still being quiet), and generally a stream of house duty responsibilities, dog duty, kid duty and oh yeah the husband to attend too. Phew.. I am tired after typing that. In a nutshell my normal as a Mom is busy. It's from wake up time to sun down time and even there after and sometimes before the sun comes up. It's okay though, I have adjusted into a mode of not knowing what to expect each day. For the most part the kids sleep great and my mornings can usually get started with a cup of coffee and a few minutes of personal time with Matt Lauer and Al Roker. I can't complain there. But once the boys are up it's game on. Even on school days, it's game on baby. I am just as tired at the end of the day and sometimes even more on the school days because for some reason the school days add extra stress alone just by trying to get out the door on time and not get side tracked by Ryan not wanting to wear his coat and Evan (the oh so defiant almost 4 year old) yelling at me that he doesn't like me anymore (insert knife through the heart here).
So that's my normal. . It's been my life since they were born.... My normal, my babies and guess what I love it. I know this now today after a very Non-normal day that has me even wondering why I tend to complain about normal to begin with.
My non-normal day begins with waking up at 7:00 (okay that is somewhat normal). But just as I attempt to drift off to sleep and just let the kids wake me up when they start making noise it hits me. Today is the day... Today is the day for Evan's big boy trip with Grandmommy and Granddaddy to go see Nana. It's means Evan goes all by himself in the car with my parents to see my Nana and spend the night in a hotel room. This is a first for him as we have never stayed in a hotel room with him before. I know he will be fine and that my Mom and Dad won't take their eyes off of him but still... I worry. I worry about him being 3 hours from me and worry about something happening. I worry about Ryan who will be separated form his brother all day and and I worry about everything in between the typical neurotic "Mommy worry" and just plain worry worry that after a few minutes of lying in bed trying to figure out which worry I am at, I get up and begin the rumblings of the day trying to keep things normal (probably for my sake more than the kids). My parents are due to arrive and pick up Evan in just a little less than two hours. So I have time to take my shower, hit the coffee button and get the kids up and breakfast started. A when it was time to wake the kids up normal stayed it's course by Evan fussing that he didn't get to open his door (I dared to open it for him and say good morning thinking he was over his obsession with opening and closing his door but was clearly wrong), and Ryan saying he wanted Cinnamon pancakes as he happy go lucky skipped down the hall way with his blankie in toe and his bed head hair flapping in the breeze. Normal normal. Next comes breakfast and a change of clothes, lot's of coffee for Mommy, and a last minute check of Evan's over night bag. I throw in extra outfit, extra pair of underwear and some extra toys as my husband of so casually reminds me he is going to be gone only for one night. I shoot him my famous "Listen here part timer, you don't know anything" look and add one more pair of underwear just in case.
At this point The boys are playing, and my heart starts pounding at the impending doom of my folks avrial to whisk away my baby, my first born.....my beloved Evan.
Needless to say the arrival, transfer, last minute hugs and nose pressed up against the window frame as they drove away and I burst into hysterical sobs, went very, very well. Mr. Part timer sings and dances behind me now elated at the fact we are down to one kid. And there is some truth there. Ryan pretty much has been in Evan's shadow since he was born. This will be good, this will a great weekend to love on Ryan and spoil him rotten. Plus it was a big transititon weekend for him too. He was going to be moving out of his crib into his big boy bed. Somewhere along the way it dons on me that a lot of big boy stuff is going on in one weekend. But once again it's that famous roll with the chaos sort of life that I have grown so used to.
So my babies turned into very big boys in one weekend. One, the world traveler (okay only to Virginia traveler), and the other no longer sleeping in his crib, his last connection to babyhood and I find myself sort of a sad happy. I am happy they are growing up and can do things like travel with my parents. I am happy that the crib has come down as Ryan is finally getting to grow up like he has seen his brother do. So much is changing in such short time frame but when all is said and done and I look at my life and what's my normal. I wouldn't change a thing. Even on the days where the boys are fighting and I am at my wits end over everything... I wouldn't change a thing. My normal is my crazy. I wouldn't have it any other way.
No joke, the morning started off with a cock roach falling on my head. I am not kidding and I know that is something most of you are probably squirmy about but it's true. It seems like this time of year brings them in the house and I have seen one or two back in our bathroom. Usually I get the bug spray to (somewhat calmly) handle them or I just yell for my husband to come and remove the bug. He does so usually with out any problem. Thank goodness. Yet one can never be prepared for one to fall on your head while using the potty on an early Saturday morning. He bounced off my head and landed on the floor then looked up at me as if to say "thanks, you just cushioned my fall." I didn't have time to answer since I was to busy doing the blood curling scream, run out of the bathroom with pants still around my ankles maneuver that I am sure my husband found quite enjoyable at 7:00 a.m.Needless to say I thought the was going to be the worst thing to happen to me that day. I was wrong.....
The pain started about an hour later. I had just finished giving the kids breakfast and was going through the motions of lining up my morning. I knew I had to take the boys to a birthday party and still needed to shower. I was doing the dishes when I felt some bad cramps sneak up on me. I wasn't too surprised since my time of the month was a few days away and maybe it was just coming early. But as the day progressed so did the pain. I dismissed it for awhile thinking again bad menstrual cramps and maybe a touch of food poisoning. I had had food poisoning a few years ago and this sort of felt like the same thing. But that inner voice in my head said this was different... but as we all sometimes do, I ignored that inner voice. Some how mustering up enough strength, I took a shower, popped 3 Tylenol and took the boys to the party. After about 10 minutes I knew this was a bad idea. The pain got worse and despite all common sense telling me I was in trouble I still dismissed it as bad cramps, I apologized to the Mom of the birthday boy and also to Evan and Ryan as I drove them home early from the party, promising them I would make it up to them later.
At this point all I can say is thank God it was a Saturday, because Chris was home and he was able to manage the boys for me once we got home. The pain had crossed over to something I hadn't even experienced in labor. I was throwing up at this point and I was in tears crying begging for it to go away. After a quick phone call to my Mom to come stay with the boys (and a quick prayer thanking God we have family in town) Chris took me to the nearest Emergency room. I remember on the drive there I was trying so hard to focus on anything other than the pain. I stared a lot a the trees as we passed by them, really noticing that fall is here and how much the leaves have changed. Looking back now I can honestly say that focusing on things like the leaves. Helped make that drive a lot better.
By the time we got to the hospital I was in so much pain I couldn't sit still. I tired....but it was impossible. I finally found a very faint version of the fetal position, curled up in the wheel chair in the waiting room was the best case scenario. I vaguely remember people looking at me but I didn't care. I remember Chris holding my hand and me wishing that a nurse would come get me sooner than later. At this point I knew something was wrong. Appendicitis or maybe a cyst of some kind. It's funny all the things that run through your mind..... I was scared at this point really, really scared.
After I was taking back into a room it didn't take long for the nurses to know something was wrong. I haven't been in the hospital since I had my boys and not a whole lot has changed. The gowns are the same, the rooms are the same, the size of the T.V. are the same (not that my husband noticed or if he did he was sweet enough not to say anything.) I will say that they were on me quick and after a few questions had me hooked up to an I.V. with medicine for my nauseous and pain medicine. I remember the rush I got as soon as the pain medicine entered my veins and I was so thankful. Thankful to get that relief, thankful to finally take a breath and not feel like I was being poked in the stomach with hot iron stake. I was able to finally drift off to sleep.
7 hours later and many tests which ruled out an ovarian cyst, appendicitis, and other gastrointestinal stuff a simple CT scan showed I had kidney stones. I was sent home with instructions on how to pee through a strainer cup (oh joy), perscripion for more pain medicine as well as Flo max which supposedly has the same shirking capabilities on kidney stones as it does on men's prostrate. Funny how the medical world can work sometimes. When asked when the stones would pass the doctor looked at me like a Mom would look at her child when asked where do babies come from. Her expression at first was guarded almost unsure. Then she gave me the classic "Everyone is different." She told me to stay on top pf my pain meds and if the vomiting returned and the pain got worse than to come back to the ER. Best case scenario the stones would pass in a few days. If they didn't and I was still feeling really sick, surgery may be an option. We were dismissed with all of our items and sent home to play the waiting game of stones or no stones. Still not out of the woods but not in half as much pain as I was earlier we headed home with a stop along the way at a 24 hour pharmacy to pick up my medicine. Somewhere along the way we figured out we were slightly hungry and hit the Wendy's drive through way for a much needed chocolate frosty (a.k.a comfort food). It was almost midnight and we were kid free so why not? So our day ended with Chris and I sipping on chocolate frosty's and heading home to bed. If it wasn't for my medical bracelet still intact and my head swimming from pain medicine it would have felt like old times.
All of that behind me now I am happy to say the stone did pass early yesterday. The first day home form the hospital was okay, the evening's were the worst. Almost as if my body decided to inch that stone along while I was lying still preventing me to sleep. It just didn't seem fair... But alas, it has passed and it's in it's little cup ready to be taken to the urologist in a few days for my follow up. I showed it to the boys as they looked in awe at the stone that was in Mommy's tummy. Through all of this they have been so sweet, knowing something was wrong with Mommy they were in Chris's hands as well as my parents. Once again I am realizing how grateful I am to have a partner in Chris who can take over parenting duties at the drop of a hat and my own parents who at word found out I was having to go to the hospital made it over here to the house in a record breaking 12 minutes and 15 seconds. Not to mention all of my friends and neighbor's who have called to check on me and send us meals for dinner. It truly has been an experience to say the least. I am feeling better each day. Still a little sore yet hopeful that I will never have to go through this again. I remember hearing that passing a kidney stone is worse than labor pains. I am hear to say that they both suck. They are both different in their own "special" way if you can call it that. At least at the end of child birth you have a precious little baby. At the end of this all you have is a small little pebble about the size of a poppy seed. Nothing too special there. But I did learn something. I learned never to ignore your instinct. When something feels wrong in your gut (no pun intended) it probably is and there is no such thing as overreacting when it comes to your health. Always always take care of yourself and your body. It's just too precious to do other wise. Unless you are a cockroach than by all means, if you cross my path again you are dead meat!