I am sitting in the PICU watching my Bug rest. They took her breathing apparatus out today and her throat is sore, so she is very hoarse. Every time she cries, almost nothing comes out and it hurts me because I want the nurse to hear her. It is the first time I have cried since the surgery. I have been so "strong" but I am here alone tonight and I am hurting for her. I pray God gives me her pain and that she is numb. I want to stand in the gap for her.
So I am going to sit and reflect on the day I had with my Booger, whom I have missed more this week than I allowed myself to realize. I saw him for the first time last night and when the elevator door opened and he saw me, he ran and wrapped his arms around me saying "Mommy!!" with his usual gigantic grin. He has my heart in his hands and I hope he knows it.
So last night I had fun laughing at him and the silly things his granny told me he said yesterday and on the way to New Orleans. He went outside barefoot and said "Granny! I forgot my shoes!" She responded with "Well that is ok, we are just going to be out here a second. Then, we will go back inside." And he said, "Is that in the bible?" I am always telling him not to go barefoot outside, even though it is my favorite thing to do. Can't help it, I was raised redneck, but I want better for him. So of course I laughed at him worrying if going outside was in the bible. Then I thought to myself, that is not the first time he has asked if random things are in the bible. And it makes me proud to think he is really concerned if things are "ok with God". It makes me realize that in all the things I have done wrong in life, I might be doing one thing right.
So last night, Charlie and I allowed Lake to sleep in the groovy circle bed with us... and let me tell you, he was excited about that. I like to think it's because mommy and daddy don't have the "family bed" going but I am pretty sure he thought the circle bed was the coolest thing ever. I woke up once at 5am and turned over to see him laying between us... arms above his head, just like Lennon, and thought how cute are my kids.... they sleep just like their momma.
Today, Charlie and I visited Lennon, and then we had plans to take Lake to the Insectarium. On the way to the hospital, we are riding along in the car and my mom calls. I said, "Lake, do you want to say hello to your mamaw?" (giving him the stink eye to be nice) and he said "NO." I told him, like any mom would, "Be nice!" and he responded with, "No thank you. Why don't you text her instead." (hint hint mommy, hang up the phone) I could not control my laughter! He is his parents in the making. After our visit with Lennon, we rode a trolley... which was definitely a highlight of Lake's day. We took it to downtown New Orleans and walked Canal St to the bug exhibit. A pigeon was walking on the ground and Lake thought that big bird was funny, he started to try and catch it but we convinced him otherwise. And while he was watching this one, another pigeon started to land and nearly flapped it's wings in Lake's face. He said, "Mommy, that bird almost hit me!" I laughed a hardy laugh as I remembered a time not too long ago, I was walking down Canal St with my sister and two friends when a pigeon flew into my head. I swear that's bird's flying license should be revoked.
We had a great time at the Insectarium. But the best time of all was NOT the ant exhibit. Mommy nearly had a panic attack. I do not do well with ants. I shiver now as I think of them. But, we did pet a Madagascar Hissing Cockroach and a Patent Leather Beetle. They had a swamp exhibit with two white (not albino, because there is a difference) alligators. I rushed to find Lake to show him these, only to find him eating chocolate covered crickets. Yes, real ones. So, I tried a chocolate covered cricket. A real one. I amaze myself sometimes - only because I did not vomit. Charlie tried worm salsa but I was fine with crickets. Anyways, so back to white alligators.... I grabbed Lake's hand and told him to come see what I found, so he and I left the rest of the family to venture off on our own. We walked around the termite exhibit and into the swamp. And as we watched the white alligator, I told him there were two so we walked around the circle aquarium looking intensely for the other.... his eyes wide with excitement, set firmly on the tank, and I grabbed his shoulder to warn him about the giant mounted alligator on the floor.... "Lake, watch out for that alligator!" (and yes I did say it like this thing was about to attack us) He looked quickly to his right and there it was, on the ground mouth wide open.... You would have thought that thing was chasing him. He started backing up, gasping for air and screamed! I nearly peed my pants with laughter!! I held him and said, "Baby it's not real!" Good thing he has a great sense of humor because he started laughing really hard and said "Mommy you scared and tricked me!" We both laughed hard and hugged. It was too funny. Man I wish I had that on video.
On the way back, riding the trolley, Lake was dozing off to sleep because he had missed his nap. I asked him to come sit in my lap and I cradled him like an infant until he fell fast asleep. I was reminded, holding this tall for his age 4 year old, of how much he has grown up and and how fast. Yet in my mind, I still viewed him as my baby. And I always will. I am sure no matter how much I grow up, or how big I get (reminder to lose this baby weight), God still looks at me like His baby. I know He feels about me the way I feel about Lake. Then thinking of that I was reminded that no matter how much "much needed" fun I was having today with Lake, I had another little lady who was laid in a hospital bed with no one but strangers watching over her tiny desperate body... And I nearly had a panic attack. That is when I heard a quiet voice in my heart.... "That is my baby too. And she always will be." So I chose to take refuge in that.
I visited Lennon a good bit more after the Insectarium and then ran back to take a shower and rest for a minute (since the PICU) was closed. After Lake and Charlie were gone to bed, I grabbed my computer bag, my books, my purse and my trusty breast pump bag. Not the cutest bag, that thing. Jaime made a joke about it as I left her house and I made a remark about "Trendy Breast Pump Bags coming soon". Move over Kelly Moore Bag... Hello Taryn Davidson Bag. Ladies, I will even monogram them with your name, your initials, your kid's name(s)... or whatever nick name you have for your "girls". However, in regards to nick naming "the girls", I refuse to ever monogram "Tig O Bitties" on anything.
So here I am again, back in the PICU. It is nearly midnight, and I am sure not tired. Maybe because I am content listening to my music and sitting in the same room with my bug. Or maybe because my ADHD is exaggerated due to the extreme amount of coffee I consumed earlier. But I am looking at that peaceful little face, without her ginormous breathing apparatus and I am at peace. I am reminded once again, God is all knowing. He knows what we need when we need it. He is always on time. And today, I needed to be with my son, if nothing else but to hear my Savior remind me once again that we are all part of Him and He still thinks of us as His babies. He is constantly trying to steer us in the right direction and raise us right. But ultimately it's our decision on the paths we choose.