I am the type of person that needs a reminder for everything. Even though I have a date book I still write myself a note the day before an appointment or I keep my appointment card. I have to write a list for the grocery store or any shopping for that matter. Sometimes I even write myself a to-do list for the next day. One thing I never thought I would have to be reminded of was why I wanted to become a mother.
After infertility struggles and losing our son I never in a million years dreamed of how many times parenting can be so frustrating. I guess I was so naïve to think I would be living in this dream world where my baby/toddler would be perfect and always behave. I would get plenty of sleep and have tons of patience. Then came my Avery and she tests my limits quite a bit. Oh and she doesn’t sleep much either. It seems like every time I am at the end of my rope I get a reminder of how lucky I am to be able to have a baby and bring her home.
My first big reminder that I can remember was when we first brought Avery home from the NICU. I was going through my second round of chemo and I was exhausted and feeling like I was hit by a bus. Maybe it was the chemo or the hormones but I was a wreck. I was sobbing and just pleading for some sleep and relief from feeling sick all of the time. Once I got Avery to lay down I was so ready for a short nap before her next feeding. I was flipping through the guide looking for something to watch until I fell asleep when a show caught my eye. It was about a famous couple that had gone through infertility struggles and was finally able to have a baby of their own via surrogate. The episode that was on was the one where they had the baby. Before the episode was over I found myself running to Avery’s bassinet to pick her up and hold her. Watching the flashbacks of their infertility struggle and the joy of finally having their own baby gave me a huge reminder. I fought so hard to have my little gal and now all I could do was feel sorry for myself. Of course there was a lot of cuddling after that and more tears. But this time it was happy tears and I was reminded how lucky I was to have my own miracle to snuggle and love.
Today I had another reminder. I have an impending scan looming in my future which always makes me a ball of nerves. The closer the scan gets the more my patience wears thin. I know it sounds weird but sometimes I forget that I had cancer. I guess I should say I don’t forget but it gets pushed to the side until a scan comes. We have had a couple long nights due to Avery’s molars coming in and me being up all night thinking about all of the types of cancer I could have. So when we got an invite to go and play outside with a friend I gladly accepted. I knew Avery wasn’t feeling the best but I thought maybe getting outside would be good for both of us. Of course my little spitfire proved me wrong. She threw a fit in the restaurant and was really testing what little patience I have left. Of course she was elated to go and play on the toys but once we got home again it was back to the cranky toddler business. After an interesting bath followed by more toddler behavior we moved to the living room. For some reason I decided to check my appointment letter because I keep getting the times messed up. The second I picked my letter up Avery started screaming on the couch. When I looked over she had her hands shoved in her mouth and she was saying “Mom!” Oh I felt so bad for her. She was in tons of pain because of her teeth. I kept looking at the letter and then at her . That’s when the reminder came. I could have not been here to take care of her when she needs me. I could have gotten cancer before I became pregnant with her and would not have been able to have her.
I am sure there will be more hard days but I welcome the reminders. Even though we have struggles a smile from my little miracle can make those struggles fade away. Sometimes I just need a reminder.