Friday, June 26, 2009

Everything for a reason

I've been thinking a lot lately how everything happens for a reason. For instance, when Frank and I decided to have a baby, we were hoping for a May/June birth seeing as how I often have much less contracted work in the summer (due to the break). We are apparently very good at getting pregnant, since Olivia was conceived in the first month we tried. Initially, we were worried about budgeting and finances, but I began to like the idea of having a longer maternity leave than I initially imagined. Then, when Olivia was diagnosed with bilateral hip dysplasia, which led to the surgery and subsequent spica cast, I realized how lucky I was to have the extra time. If she had been born in June, I would be headed back to work right in the middle of the spica cast stretch. As it stands now, she will hopefully be cast-free in early August, and I will head back to work in September. The timing is (cross your fingers) ideal.

And then, I think about all the trouble we had breastfeeding initially. In the hospital, she wouldn't latch on or suck. We had to teach her how to do it, and in the meantime, we fed her formula from a bottle. I pumped until she got the hang of it, and slowly we weaned her off the formula. Again, we were lucky that there was no nipple confusion, and eventually I was able to both nurse and give her a pumped bottle of milk. This would seem like no big deal, but I realized how wonderful it worked out when we were driving to Delaware for her appointment when she was only five days old. We sat in the waiting room for a few minutes, but when we were called back to the room, we waited for about 20 - 30 more minutes. She had to be fitted for the harness, but since her insurance wasn't finalized (since she had just been born and Frank hadn't talked to HR yet), it took about another hour to get it all settled. When all was said and done, we had driven 45 minutes for a 2+ hour appointment followed by an hour drive home. I remember thinking thank goodness she takes a bottle. In hindsight, I couldn't imagine being in a situation where I was exclusively breastfeeding and wondering about where I could feed her in private.

Maybe we are the right parents for this because we are our usual upbeat and positive selves. If a certain percentage of children are born with hip dysplasia, and an even smaller number require surgery, then I'm okay with the fact that it's us and not someone else. We are a short-ish drive away from one of the best doctors on the east coast for this condition. Our schedules are flexible. So I keep telling myself it is what it is, and God has a plan. I may not see it now, but I'll see it soon enough. It won't be like this forever, and when it's over, we'll be stronger.

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