Yesterday was a rough day for Mama. It started out with Julia sleeping in until 6:45. While the extra sleep in the morning was lovely, I can always tell something’s not quite right when she sleeps in that late. She was in a very good mood while nursing and immediately afterward. Then, I put her in her highchair for breakfast. She was fine until I had to run upstairs for 1 minute. While I was gone, she started crying. Normally if she cries when I leave the room, she’ll calm down once she sees me again, but this time she didn’t. She kept crying.
We drove about five minutes from our house and at that point, the screaming was so intense that I pulled over and took Julia out of the car to try and see what was wrong. I smelled her tush to see if she had a dirty diaper (nope). I checked her forehead to see if she felt feverish (nope). Given where we were, I couldn’t just nurse her right there… and it didn’t seem like that would help (since she had already nursed and eaten breakfast). So I just held her for a few minutes and we walked around the car a few times, then I put her back in the car. She then proceeded to cry the whole way to daycare. I tried singing. I tried talking to her. I turned the radio on. I turned the radio off. I tried jazz music. I tried classical. I tried rock. I tried children’s music. Nothing worked. By the time we got to daycare, even I was in tears!
When we got into her classroom, Julia struggled to wriggle out of my arms and went over to sit in the lap of her daycare teacher. But the crying continued for about 10-15 minutes while I sat there and watched her, tried to engage her in activities, and was just generally concerned about what was bothering her. She finally seemed to settle down enough that I felt comfortable leaving, so I left to go to work.
An hour after I got to work, Julia’s daycare teacher called to say she had been crying on and off since I had left. She also mentioned that they used a thermometer that checks the temperature behind the ears and that one ear was hotter than the other. So I called Julia’s pediatrician and made an appointment for 2 PM. I picked Julia up around 1 and took her straight to the doctor. Sure enough, she has an ear infection in one ear. Poor thing! At least we know why she was so fussy yesterday morning though… even with that knowledge, yesterday was an emotionally exhausting morning. The hardest part was when Julia crawled over to her daycare teacher and didn’t seem comforted by me at all. Guilty mom thoughts started swimming around in my head: am I working too much? Does Julia spend too much time at daycare? Should I be a stay at home mom? Does she not love me as much as she loves her daycare teachers? Does she like it better at daycare than she does at home? I mentioned these concerns to one of the ladies at work and her reply was, “she’s just getting you ready for her becoming a teenager when she’ll start to tell you that she hates you and you’re the worst mother in the world.” Good points… but it was still hard to swallow. I’m looking forward to the next few weeks when we’ll be spending a bit more time together as Mommy & Baby (since daycare closes for a few days over Thanksgiving and a few days over Christmas). I think we need some more time together just the two of us when we’re both awake and happily playful.