You never, EVER want to hear a really happy NICU nurse say to your husband while you’re open and bloody on the c-section table, “Hey! We believe your daughter doesn’t have an anus!”
WHAT. THE. HELL.
You never, ever lie against your husband/boyfriend/significant other when you’re 6 months pregnant and say, “Oh, honey, I can’t wait for the day we bring our little baby home, all 10 fingers, 10 toes, and properly formed rectal wall intact. Won’t it be wonderful when we find that she DOESN’T have her liver hanging out of a gaping hole in her belly at birth?”
And then you make sweet, pregnancy-hormone-induced love and he massages your belly with that belly balm for pregnant mothers that never worked for me.
This pregnancy was never normal, but I guess I just assumed (we all know what assuming does) that the ultrasounds were right when they told us that her twin had kicked the bucket a while ago (I still remember telling the sonographer, “Well, we know who won THAT intrauterine fight!”) and that she had some major issues, something to do with the contents of her abdomen not being “all in” her abdomen like they should have been.
What is this, a freaking poker game?
Listen, people, you really gotta keep a sense of humor, especially when it’s three in the afternoon and your baby is 5 months old, now with a colostomy (bag of poop hanging off of her belly because, well, there just wasn’t a regular exit), and your neighbor is paying a visit. You let your neighbor in, only you don’t know that the baby ripped the poo bag off and IT’S ALL OVER THE FLOOR.
“Why yes, Bob, we usually just let our small infant play in her own feces. You know what they say about natural play!!!! It is very organic, NOT made in China, and good for the earth!”
Bob suddenly remembers that the “check engine” light on his car has been flashing and so he backs out of the house slowly.
You know, I don’t think we’d be where we are today (married for 10 years, happily, with three kids, a mortgage and two jalopies) were it not for the sense of humor my husband and I share.
When our daughter was 5 months old I was changing her diaper and noticed, um, she had three holes. There were only supposed to be two, right? I mean, that’s what Mrs. Dukek, my 6th grade Health and Living teacher said, so… three?
“We believe she has two vaginal entrances.”
SHUT THE FRONT DOOR. And, also, isn’t that something you, like, you know, check for at birth?
Of course, it’s 2013 which is amazing and awesome and means that doctors can do amazing things like vaginal reconstruction on a three year old. Her anatomy is now no different than any other three year old, though she did get to choose the color of her vagina before that surgery which was eight hours of sheer torture for her dad and me. An upside was that we had fun watching her under the effects of Versed.
Have you ever SEEN a 3 year old on Versed?
Before she was wheeled into the operating room, high on life, she said to me, “Mommy! MAKE SURE DR. LEVITT KNOWS I WANT A PINK VAGINAAAAAAAAA!”
When she was five years old, we were all riding in the car. “Daddy! Boys have penises and girls have vaginas!”
Daddy, deadpan: “Aaaaaaaaaaaaaand…some girls have two! Tell me something…did you accidentally stand in the vagina line twice instead of getting over to the anus line?”
…and then she laughs hysterically.
She definitely has continued to have medical issues, and though she doesn’t “look” like a special needs child on the outside, she definitely is one. It’s been hard on our family and it has been a strain.
When people ask, “How have you gotten through the last eight years intact?” Here’s my answer: Laughing.
If you can’t see the funny, you may as well pack up your bags and go home.
That “check engine” light needs attention.