Thursday, October 18, 2012

Day 18

Tonight I was enjoying my usual snuggle time with Tera while putting her to bed.  She fell asleep quickly as she seems to have had a little bit of an "off" afternoon and evening.  As I held her sleeping in my lap my usual thoughts ran through my head.  I could be doing laundry, or catching up on emails, or any number of things.  But NONE of those things is ever as important as that time with my little girl.  I find myself saying that I'll put her in her crib in just a minute, but then holding on for just a bit longer.

About a month ago someone on Facebook shared a link to a blog in which a mom wrote about all the last times.  As parents you are always wondering when the next "first" will be, but you rarely know when a "last" will be and it's so true.  You celebrate the "firsts", but many times you won't even know something is a last until it's long gone.  The last time you give them a bottle before bedtime, the last bath you give them before they can do it themselves, the last time they hold your hand in the parking lot, the last book you read to them instead of them reading to you.  Even as an adult there is the last night you spend at home.

I don't want to look back on any of my special times with Tera and realize that I rushed the "last one" and so I will continue to relish every second of that time with her.  But as she fell deeper and deeper into sleep her head kind of rolled to the side of my shoulder exposing her right cheek to me.  Yesterday Tera had a bit of a spill on the playground which resulted in several scrapes and marks on her sweet little face as she came into very close contact with the wood chips.  So as her cheek lay there exposed and damaged, I couldn't help but softly kiss her little marks in hopes of making them disappear.  I of course know that there is no scientific evidence that mom's kisses have healing powers, but I know that even as an adult, they can sure make you feel better. So I just repeatedly kissed her face and the next thing I knew my hand was over her heart.  And as I realized this, I felt the swishing that comes as a result of her murmur and the hole and it makes me smile and sad all at the same time.

You see, when I was first pregnant I was so desperate to hear her heartbeat.  My doctor doesn't do 8 week ultrasounds and I couldn't feel anything but nausea yet, so I wanted some proof of her life.  The first appointment my doctor thought I might be able hear it, he couldn't find it.  He assured me it was still early and everything seemed fine, but in my mind I was panicking.  As I scheduled the next appointment, I made it about a week earlier than it needed to be because I just wanted to hear it.  And around 11 weeks I did.  It sounded like galloping horses and it was beautiful.  As I walked back to my car that afternoon, I told my unborn child that it had better not scare me like that again (little did I know just how much she wasn't going to listen to that demand!)  At every appointment after that, I got to hear her heart and at 20 weeks, when the ultrasound technician announced she was a girl, we got to see her little heart pumping.  Fast forward to February 26, 2011 when my sweet girl entered the world only to find out that she had not one, not two, but three holes in her heart and they were concerned because one was fairly large and about 12 hours after she was born, the doctor informed us it could mean surgery.  But that was not going to deter Tera.  After a few days in the NICU, a few EKG's and two heart echo's later, the biggest hole had closed and she was out of danger.

Now, she has only one hole still open and it's very easy to hear and feel.  But the louder it gets, the healthier she is (small hole =  more noise as the blood goes through it).  But no matter how small, and how little it affects her, I still wish I could kiss that and make it all better too.

A flashback, but one of my favorites...

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