On feeling like an umbrella in the rain

I am sure psychology has got names to different stages of acceptance - that when a person comes to learn about something and then processes that information until they come to terms with it, that psychology has over time identified the way people (usually) move through those stages and in interest of briefness, how to call them.

But I am not a psychologist; I just know what it feels like to be me.

And today I am, yet again, processing.

I am googling things such as, "general anaesthesia in children", "botulinum toxin on achilles tendon" and "MRI on children". I am reading through booklets I was supplied with in the orthopaedic department and the ones I hunted down on the paediatric floor.

I am thinking, on one hand, that this really is minor - that in the orthopaedic department today I saw three children with various stages of muscle and nerve decay strapped into wheelchairs and fed by hand, all whilst my two were happily re-organising toys in the playcorner and later demanding bananas and apples; but on the other hand... there's something frightening in the words "general anaesthesia" when what is meant by those words is that my own children will be affected.

I become to feel like an umbrella when it's my children that are affected - spreading out to cover everything in sight and later furiously googling to squeeze every possible pinch of knowledge out of this breathtakingly marvelous thing called The Internet, making sure I know darn well what it is that we're headed into.

(A funny side note: as I finished briefing an orthopaedic surgeon today on what has been done and looked at, and what hasn't yet, the doctor asked me if I was working in... medicine. I kind of did a double-take on him, not knowing where on earth had that question come from, until I realised that after routinely running through words such as "placental function", "global delay", "fine and gross motor skills", "speech therapy" etc, I probably came across as a person who has a fairly good grasp on what she's talking about, to which I could only say that... "Nah, thanks, but I've just Googled a lot =)".)

And so I thought about stages of acceptance: how on Tuesday when I walked out of the office knowing that my genuine attempt at working my way towards a job in quantity surveying had come to an end, and that I would probably have to post-pone trying to work again for a wee while - until the kids got a bit older - how for a few days the world had become kind of... quiet.

It almost felt like someone had turned off the "emotion" button somehow. I didn't... feel much. Even on Thursday when I walked into our grandparent's funeral I didn't feel much.

It was only on Thursday afternoon when I had both kids ill at home again, and Friday when I was feeling really, really squeezed dry, that the emotions started bubbling up again, and not necessarily in a way I was pleased with.

And now today: having talked to the orthopaedic surgeon and our physiotherapist, at first it was all machine-like, okay-so-this-is-what-we-need-to-do attitude - talking myself through procedures I will need to read up on, and thinking how it is kind of lucky, actually, that I'm not employed any more because it means I have the time to deal with it all.

But now I've relaxed a little and had lunch, and the emotions are bubbling up again, just like they did on Friday when the fact I'd been let go really sunk in, and... I'm not really pleased with where my emotions today are going, either, because yet again I am reminded of the circumstances surrounding The Kid's birth.

I've written about it before. I've written about possibly carrying an undiagnosed case of gestational diabetes when I was pregnant with The Kid before.

It had just never occurred to me that an orthopaedic surgeon would link problems with tendons to possible birth complications and I'm, like, oh, great. Another thing.

It bugs me to think that out of us two - me and The Man - one actually wants to be the stay-at-home parent and the other one actually wants to go back to work, and the roles we've got at the moment are the opposite of that. We can't seem to be able to figure out how to switch roles and as I walked back from the hospital pushing my kids in a buggy, whilst it was cold and raining (and snowing a bit further up the hill), I thought, The Man would do this stuff with joy. I do it because I feel I have to.

And now I've promptly gone and looked up an old video of me in my PJ's sitting in the kitchen with The Kid and listening to Taylor Swift's "Shake it off".

Yup. That made me smile =).

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