I went back and forth on whether or not to post this on my blog. I try to keep my kids separate from my business because really, who wants to read 1,989,979 posts about how awesome I think my own kids are!? I decided that this was truly an exception! I hope someone can pull something useful from what I’m about to post. If you’re anything like me as a parent, you work hard to juggle work, home life, and motherhood. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve said, “just a second honey, mommy is working now.” Last week, my entire outlook on life shifted.
There have been times throughout my kids’ lives where I’ve wondered if I needed to take them in to the Dr. My husband and I usually take the wait-and-see approach. It’s SO hard to know what’s normal and what isn’t! Also, I hate feeling like an over-reacting mother for bringing my kids in when they really just have the sniffles. Not to mention the insurance co-pays, the inconvenience, the long waits at the doctor’s office… For me, it’s usually the ‘over-reacting parent’ thing that keeps me from calling.
Last Monday, our 4 year old had the sniffles, by Tuesday night, she was being revived in the emergency room. She went from having the sniffles to full-blown pneumonia in a matter of hours. My husband and I went back and forth over whether or not to take her in to the doctor. Who goes in for the sniffles? She kept complaining of a sore throat and we had NO CLUE that she meant it hurt at the base of her neck because she couldn’t breathe. It was nagging at me and I finally made the decision to take her in. Even as i was turning in to Urgent Care with a car full of melting groceries, I was second guessing myself. I almost took the groceries home instead. The ER doctor told me had we waited, it was unlikely she would’ve made it.
This brings me to the point of this blog post. I’ve been feeling incredibly guilty for not realizing the severity of this situation. I almost placed more importance on $124 in groceries than my daughter’s life. I almost allowed my pride keep me from taking her in. You can bet that any time I question whether or not something is “doctor worthy,” I will now be calling. Please learn from my experience! Who cares if someone thinks you’re over-reacting? You could end up saving your child’s life.
I also realized in the ER that I take photos for other families, but have neglected to have my photos of my own family done. Take those photos. Take as many snapshots of your kids and family as you can. Snapshots may not be prize winning portraits, but those will be the moments you will cherish for life. I will also be making time for sessions with my own kids. I am hiring a photographer to take new family photos of us ASAP since this isn’t something I can do myself. I don’t care if I’m not at the weight I want to be at. I don’t care if I haven’t had time to update my hairstyle. I want those memories in print. Stop putting it off and capture your family as they are!
Again, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve told my daughter, “in a minute honey, mommy is working right now.” Not anymore. Our family dinners will not be interrupted by phone calls–I promise to call you back as soon as we’re done. Put the paperwork aside for just a few minutes per night and play with your babies before they grow up. I will not get irritated at the “one more book!” before bedtime. Give your kids an extra hug tonight. Tell them you love them more often than you ever have. Kiss them until they cringe and push you away. Snuggle your babies extra long tonight and be very grateful that they are there in your arms.
And of course, a photo. A crummy, out-of-focus iphone photo, but a memory, none-the-less! Taken on her 4th birthday at Legacy Emanuel in Portland. A birthday we will NEVER forget!