Friday, April 16, 2010
NOT A TEXTBOOK SiTUATiON
Just when I thought I shouldn't worry too much about our son because I am one of these always-worried-people he was diagnosed with a heart disease a few days after birth. It turns out to be one of the most common heart diseases there are, so far he is not suffering from it and most importantly: it can be fixed. But he will have to have surgery in a few months and will have to be hooked on to cables and wires and not home with us for a few weeks. It his hard to imagine, I probably shouldn't but then again I kind of have to prepare myself for it.
And while thinking about that all day, while watching him carefully I tend to forget to watch his regular development. To watch him just like any other child in his second week on earth. But this is exactly what he needs - normality. This is where two instincts clash. The mother instinct that is careful with the tendency to be overprotective and the instinct to raise a self confident baby that can take a lot more than we adults can imagine.
I am walking this fine line while having learned another lesson. You can prepare yourself as much as you want, the real life experience will teach you to adjust and listen. You can read books and books about pregnancy, about giving birth, about the first few months with your newborn. You can learn about parenting and figure out the way you want to go. But there is not a single textbook out there that tells you how to handle a diagnosis like a heart disease or anything else that is out there. And if you're not careful you let it all slip and become overprotective. It is a lot harder to "just let him be and watch him play". But it wouldn't help him at all when I would pick him up all the time he makes an unsatisfied noise. It won't fix his heart. And in the end - he is well and developing just fine.
So I'll continue to walk along this fine line and instead of overprotecting my son I protect myself a little by trusting him to let me know when he really needs me.