Monday, November 06, 2006

walking guilt

As might have been obvious, J returned home w/ M, 4 pairs of tights for a 6 year old, and a set of boy's PJs. Really. No, really. No, seriously.

That aside, I am full of maternal guilt. M has had a cough for a few weeks, a bit of a runny nose, but no other symptoms. I put off taking her to the MD out of a) the fear of over-reacting and b) wasting time hearing it's just a cold, and c) because I am obviously a horribly selfish person.

We took her in today because something very small deep inside me told me to.

She has walking pneumonia. And has for a few weeks. And I did nothing until today.

It's rather hard to describe the immense guilt I am feeling in this moment.

22 comments:

acumamakiki said...

not selfish at all. i know the feeling of not wanting to be too over-reactionary when it comes to your child's health. you took her and now you know.
you're a great mama jen, don't doubt yourself and baby m will be good to go when the meds kick in.

Deezee said...

easy for me to say, but don't feel guilty. honest mistake. really. I, too, hesitate before taking my kid to the doc. I think deep down many of us don't want to 1) make a useless trip, and 2) breed hypochondriacs...

but the tights and pjs...now that's a story!

Anonymous said...

The Mayor has it too. Just found out today. Gah.

KC said...

Dear Jen, you, my friend, are a wonderful mother and the complete antithesis to a "horribly selfish person"!

She's fine. No harm done. And usually "walking pneumonias" don't get diagnosed until after several weeks due to the innocuous presentation. Honestly. Hence the "walking" modifier.

I would have done the same.

crazymumma said...

Honey.....

The problem with the really little ones is that they cannot tell us exactly what is going on. If she had appeared very sick i know you would have been waking that doctor up in the middle of the night.

I still remember Biggirl throwing up for two days and moaning, low fever. I thought it was her tummy...turned out it was her ears....the doctor made me feel so bad. We have all done it.

PunditMom said...

No guilt. I worry about that all the time ... should I call the doctor? The nurse? Will they think I'm being a paranoid mother?
She's fine and that's the important thing!

Momish said...

Oh, please, please don't blame yourself, it is so typical and I too would have done the same thing. Cold after cold after cold, I fear the doctor's will hate me, so I wait as well. It's a fancy word for a lingering cold. Your instict told you it was lasting too long and you went. The right response for the right thing. If you had taken her earlier, you'd be posting about how the doctors all rolled their eyes at yet another paranoid mom! You're a fab mom! And J-dog is a great dad, even if he doesn't quite have the be all, end all fashion sense. But, really, I am a freak over tights too! They are irresistable in any size!

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to hear about M's illness and hope she gets well very quickly! "Selfish" is not a word I would use to describe you at all. I can imagine that parents have to make these determinations all the time. You do the best you can with the information you have. Let go of that guilt stuff. :)


Peace,

Thailand Gal
~*~*~*

J Fife said...

Guilt seems to be synonymous with motherhood. Don't be so hard on yourself. I once chalked my sweet one's pain to teething. Turned out it was a double ear infection. The nurse treated me like a moron. Damned if you do, damned if you don't...

flutter said...

Let me relay to you, a story...

Once when Flutter was a very young little butterfly, she fell and hurt her wrist. When her mom came to pick her up from her friend's house, she thought Flutter was just being a pain in the ass because she did not want to go home. Flutter cried, and boohooed and told her mother that she could not bend her dainty little wing.
Flutter's mother, a sweet-lovely southern woman to the core, said to her lovely daughter "SHUT UP AND GET IN THE CAR YOU ARE NOOOOOOTTTTT HUUURRRRRRRRRTTTTTT"
This was quite uncharacteristic for Flutter's mom, and being that so, Flutter shut up and got in the car. The next morning, Flutter's little wrist blew up to twice its size and Flutter's mom took her to the hospital, and was informed that the wrist in question was broken in 7 different places.

I still give her shit, to this day.

Moral of the story? She'll be fine, no one is perfect, and if you had known you would have taken her in sooner. No harm, no foul, now you'll know for next time.

Anonymous said...

It is too hard having a toddler. I have put off going to the doctor on all manner of important matters and I have shown up at her office having been squeezed in for emergeny appointments that amount to nothing. You can't blame yourself. It's part of what parenting is.

Anonymous said...

no thats not selfish. you know we all get sick. i think you are a wonderful mother jen, dont take it too hard. love the tights and pjs, now shes really a fashion icon!!!

lildb said...

oh, sweetie. I would've done the same thing in your shoes, and -- in fact, now that you mention it, it's highly probable that my kid is similarly afflicted. crap.

*hug*

lu said...

Can't win for losing this battle.
Mommy guilt so sucks. I'm up late with a pretty good case of it myself. It sounds like your little voice piped up when it was time. Too early and the Dr. sends you home with, "more fluids and drop this by billing on your way out."

Anonymous said...

A bit of a runny nose and a cough? Of course you didn't take her to the MD right away -- most of us moms wouldn't! Why? Because runny noses and little coughs are such constant things in their little lives, from playing with other walking germ incubators, from running around in the cold, teething, and just because! The important thing is you took her in when you realized she wasn't kicking it on her own and it might have evolved into something a bit more serious.

You have no reason to feel guilty. Really!

Penny said...

It happens to all mothers. Don't be too hard on yourself. It's a learning curve, right? And, there will be more guilt, Jen.. lol.. much more..

It could have been worse.

Good that you listened to your instincts. Now, chalk it up to experience and be good to yourself.

But, what's with the tights? lol!

Anonymous said...

I don't want to sound like a broken record since I am late to the party, but WORD UP! to all the other comments....

You are not selfish. This illness is a statistical anomoly that you only detected due to your razor-honed instincts. See?

I need to see a pic of J-Dog with the tights on. I hope your little M is feeling better in no time.

mrs.incredible said...

OH, hon.....this happens to the best of us. No matter how great we are or try to be, something will miss our radar....but we'll catch it eventually. And you did. If you haven't, read this post about my big flub. It's a doozie.

http://stretchedtothelimit.blogspot.com/2006/09/welcome-to-cruel-world.html

mrs. incredible said...

Let me try that again:

http://stretchedtothelimit.blogspot.com/2006/09/welcome-to-cruel-world.html

You may take comfort in this.

Anonymous said...

Don't feel guilty...Adam had it too at around 18 months and I was back at work at the time....we thought he had a cold and that was it until he grew even more listless and lethargic and started to worry....when I was at work he could hardly move and hubs rushed him to our docs.

We felt soo bad. I felt horrible for not being there.

He was fine.

ECR said...

I think the only way for mothers to avoid "walking guilt" is to sit down. Then it's "sitting on my ass" guilt. In other words, it's unavoidable, no matter what you do. Hopefully the sympathy you are getting here will help convince you that motherhood is an affliction with symptoms that are sometimes very hard to pinpoint.

Mrs. Chicky said...

Don't beat yourself up! It sounds like that was easy to miss. The important part of that whole thing was that you did listen to yourself and brought her to the doctor.

Now, the boys PJs on the other hand, that was a decision that should have been ignored perhaps.