Written February 2nd, 2013
Caitlyn (2) is very sick today. It’s nothing that medicine + time won’t heal, but she has just been miserable all week and it is peaking, I hope, today. This is day 6 of high fevers, pain, and only restless sleep. Earlier in the week, she could have been temporarily distracted by a movie or a story but today only one thing in the world would console her: One of her parents wrapping her in their arms and letting her lay on their chest with her Snuggly blanket.
When it’s my turn and I lay down with her, I can feel her breathing slow and her little body relax into mine. She’s even managed to sleep for an hour here or there today, which is a wonderful thing.
It turns out she has a raging UTI, which has gone to her kidneys so she has a lot of blood in her urine and she’s tender all over her abdomen. The antibiotics should kick in soon but in the meantime she is having a really rough time. I’m recovering from mastitis myself (when it rains it pours) so having her rest on my chest causes some physical pain for me.
But oh there was a moment of sweetness this morning as I cuddled Caitlyn and sang to her and she dozed off into a peaceful sleep. I realized that because I had sung to her over a thousand times before, the sound of my (likely off-key) voice brought her comfort nothing else could.
Just moments before I laid down with her I was thinking about how I hadn’t showered (in days) and there were no clean dishes in the house. My mind cycled through all the things I had let slip lately… the basement was a mess, I hadn’t exercised all week despite my best intentions, I had forgotten to return multiple phone calls and fallen “behind” on several responsibilites… I am so far from a perfect person or a perfect mother. But as my daughter burrowed her sweaty head deeper into my shoulder, the realization washed over me again and again: Caitlyn didn’t care a bit about that. She just wanted her mama. The little things I do for and with her day after day have added up and I am her absolute favorite person in the world. To my two year old, I am enough. I’m more than enough. I’m her everything.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Being a mother is the hardest and best thing I’ve ever done. It is a privilege I hope I never take for granted.