Recovering from sinus surgery has not been enjoyable to say the least. I got home the Friday before Labor Day from surgery and was pretty out of it for the rest of the weekend. I bled quite a bit and until they took the splints out, pretty much couldn’t breathe out of my nose. Not fun.
During my recovery weekend, Luke was pretty much sole caregiver for Lila. He also took on the role of being my nurse, so he was pretty busy. I knew it might be a bit of a shock for Lila that I suddenly wasn’t with her as much and had a bandage across my face, but I wasn’t really expecting her to notice too much.
Well once again I underestimated my little girl and how perceptive she is of her world. She did alright with just her dad (plus some nursing visits with mom) for most the weekend, but come Sunday, she had had enough. When she woke up from her afternoon nap and saw that daddy, not mommy, was getting her once again, she lost it.
I could hear her wailing from my room while Luke tried to calm her down. She never cries waking up from a nap, so this was odd. I came out a few minutes later and thought she just wanted some milk. I tried to get her to nurse, but she was not having it. She kept hitting me and arching her back.
I was starting to feel helpless when I remembered something I’ve learned from researching RIE parenting – that sometimes kids just need to express their sad, angry or other negative feelings with our loving presence and nothing more. I decided to just hold her and let her get her tears out without trying to stop her from feeling upset. She sobbed in my arms for a good half hour, throwing her head back and slamming her arms down, before calming down.
When she quieted and rested her head against my chest, I told her “It’s okay to be sad because I haven’t been around as much. I know it’s scary for you to see me hurting. I’ll be better soon and will always be here for you.” I know she probably didn’t understand all of what I was saying, but getting her emotions out and hearing the validation from me seemed to resolve her anxiety.
I spent the afternoon sitting on the couch while she played nearby, giving her smiles when she’d look over at me. She sat in my lap quite a bit too and just wanting to be near me.
It’s been about a week and a half since surgery and I’m much, much better. I can breathe easier, there’s no more bleeding and I’m just a bit congested. Lila is doing better too. Things are back to normal in her world, which means she gets all the mommy time she wants.
If you’re interested in RIE parenting, I’d suggest checking out these blogs: