Two years ago a phlebotomist came into my room at 5 am. She inserted a needle into the crease of my elbow like someone had once every few days for the last two weeks. I was amazed they were still able to find a vein. Nothing stands out about that particular needle stick. It melts together with all the rest of the early morning wake up calls that involved someone standing over me with a needle and vacutainer.
Have you ever been so stressed out that suddenly you just… weren’t?
Last week I was clinging to the end of my rope by a very frayed thread. Tuesday morning, I woke up extra early. The windows were open, the ceiling fan was on, the birds were chirping, and it was the perfect temperature in the house. It was just perfect. For about two minutes. As soon as I noticed myself thinking about how lovely everything felt, my brain fell apart. It’s not even that I was having coherent anxious thoughts — there were no thoughts, it was all chaotic swirling of overwhelming feelings. It was suffocating and I wanted to crawl out of my skin. I mean it felt like there was literally not enough oxygen in the air.
I still have dreams about the NICU. Two years out and I find that to be one of the most surprising remnants of Rowan’s birthday. Most of my dreams are stress dreams anyhow, though they tend towards scary wizards and plots Steven Moffat couldn’t come up with in his own wildest dreams.
Rowan slept through the night last night. This is not a drill. I repeat — Rowan slept through the night last night. This is the first time in many, many months that he has slept all the way through. On those occasions, my body was so used to waking up 29384029348 times in the night that I did not sleep well, anyhow.
I no longer know when one illness begins and another ends. In the last month I had a cold, Zach, Rowan, and I have all had a stomach bug, Lorelei had a high fever, both kids got pink eye, Rowan had an ear infection, Rowan got another stomach bug, Zach got pink eye, Lorelei threw up, and this morning Zach and I both woke up with sore throats.
Christmas was good. Our Puppy Surprise tree worked out wonderfully. I wanted to write a whole Christmas poem about it but I didn’t because, ya know, reasons.
I remember coming across a meme that said something like, “I’m not a night owl or an early bird. I’m a perpetually exhausted pigeon.”