Thursday, May 8, 2014

Wanna Know How I Got These Scars

After almost five months of being a mom, I think the thing I'm the most proud of is the fact that everything you've eaten (with the exception of a bit of supplemental formula during your first few weeks) has been wholesome and organic. Conquering breastfeeding was quite an accomplishment for us, so when it was time to start eating big girl food, I knew we could handle making it ourselves. We have a food processor, a blender, and an immersion blender. How hard could it be?

I should have seen the signs. I enjoyed feeding you avocados and bananas much more than sweet potatoes because they were so idiot-proof. All I had to do was mash them up and mix in some breastmilk and you were good to go! Sweet potatoes were a beast of their own. Of course I undercooked them. They were chunky and hard for you to eat. I think the texture even scared you! I kept at it with the immersion blender and thinned them out enough for you to tolerate them (though avocados were still the mutual favorite by far). I didn't want to waste the whole dollar or so that I had spent on that potato, so when you were done, I threw the rest in the freezer.

A few weeks later, I defrosted an Ellie-sized portion of that frozen potato. I had the brilliant idea of steaming it in the microwave to try to cook it a little more. This created a very gummy texture, the way week old mashed potatoes can get. I tried to thin it out with some breastmilk and the immersion blender, but the entire glob of potatoes stuck to the blender! I swept my left thumb along the blade to get it off...while my right hand slipped up the handle and pushed the button. It hurt, but not that bad. It was just kind of like accidentally cutting yourself with a kitchen knife while chopping veggies...except then I realized that this knife was attached to a motor and OH GOD IS MY THUMB STILL ATTACHED?!

It was. But there was a lot of blood. I mean A LOT. And your mommy is not a squeamish person, but I seriously almost passed out. Of course at this point you were were really over your bouncy seat and wanted me to pick you up (I'm sure my screaming didn't help your mood much), but there was no way I could do that. I called your daddy and told him you were okay but he needed to come home. Then I called MY dad and told him he needed to come over as well. Then I rushed upstairs to the linen closet, grabbed some rags, made a tourniquet, clutched the rag-covered thumb with my right hand has hard as I could, and held it up in the air.

Daddy got home and I told him what happened and asked him to watch you while your Daideo took me to the emergency room. You were pretty worked up by then, so I asked him to help me nurse you. I was still applying pressure to my left thumb and trying to keep it above my heart, so I couldn't really hold you (plus I was covered in blood). So Daddy helped me lift up my shirt and held you up to my breast while I kept my blood-covered hands up in the air. He had to kind of squat awkwardly to get you in the right position. We kind of looked like some kind of weird ritual sacrifice statue from the Aztecs or something. I drew a picture to give you a better idea:

That was about the time your Daideo walked in.

Daideo cleaned the blood off of my phone, grabbed my wallet, and we were on our way. I was pretty lightheaded on the drive over, and I was wishing I had chosen a more reckless driver than your always responsible Daideo to accompany me on this journey. We arrived, and I proceeded to joke with the ED nurses because I just make jokes when I'm uncomfortable.

After an impressively brief wait, a PA came in to stitch me up. He tried to distract me with a guessing game. (Fun fact: I hate guessing games; just teach me the fact so I can collect it in my trivia bank and move on to the next fact.) Who was responsible for stitches during the Civil War? After twelve guesses, I told him I gave up and he explained that it was the barbers' responsibility because they were good with scissors. It was a pretty interesting tidbit of history, but I would like those five minutes of my life back. He was clearly uncomfortable with silence, because he moved on to the next attempt to distract me. It went something like this:
PA: So you work at this hospital?
Me: Yep.
PA: Where?
Me: Outpatient Neurorehab.
PA: Oh yeah? What do you do there?
Me: I'm a physical therapist.
PA: (pauses) actual physical therapist? Or you you an actual physical therapist?
Me: An actual physical therapist. Like I'm smart enough to have not done this. Like I went to school longer than you did.
PA: You said it - not me! 
He was probably just saying that because I look too young to have gone to school for seven years (even though the band on my wrist said I was 29 years old). But still.

I needed seven stitches to fix my thumb, some BBQ brisket to fix my self-proclaimed anemia, and probably several years to fix my pride. Underneath the dressing and the splint, my thumb looks like this right now:

You're welcome for not including an actual photo. Also, I may have drawn these doodles on the back of my discharge paperwork because I was too lazy injured to walk over to the study and get real paper.

I was pleased to hear that you'd had a nice night with Daddy. Daddy was pleased that we brought him Red Hare root beer to accompany the brisket. You were fast asleep.

Today, I'm thinking that feeding you homemade purees is probably not something we'll continue to pursue. Maybe we'll stick with avocados, but there's perfectly good stuff in jars too. Yes, breastfeeding has been a big accomplishment for us. But parenting isn't about accomplishments. It's about caring for your child and enjoying the moments you share together, from day one and for the rest of our lives. Someday, you'll enjoy eating at fancy restaurants with Mommy and Daddy, and traveling the world to explore new foods. But for now, you'll get healthy, wholesome food and that's all that matters. Bottom line: don't expect me to put nonsense like this in your lunch box:

...even if it is awesome.

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