Yesterday was one of those specific days that stand out individually against the general blur of days past in the mind. There are those days that are the sort that stick out because of monumental joy: the weddings, births, first dates, etc. The shimmery days, if you will.
Unfortunately, the other sort of days that do that tend to be fraught with misfortune. That was my yesterday.
Yesterday sucked. As I knew I would, I survived it. But even that ended up being a close call.
It started with struggling with the Beasty. She is aptly nicknamed at times…yesterday was one of those days. She’s going through some big cognitive jumps, along with her front upper teeth descending, and between those two things, her sleep has been all jacked up. Which makes her a fickle, indecisive handful of a Beasty.
She and I have developed a strong bond through babywearing, and as she’s gotten bigger, my front-facing Infantino is our ticket to tasks like meal prep and dishes. And laundry. And feeding animals. And…well, everything, pretty much. Point is, babywearing is the bees’ knees, and I highly recommend working through any initial struggles you encounter.
Anyway. We were babywearing as I put together a salad for my lunch. I, admittedly, wasn’t paying as much attention to Beasty’s reach as I was to the location of the tip and sharp edge of the knife I was using. She reached across and grabbed my salad bowl and pulled it off the counter and onto my pinky toe, and I felt my toe crunch.
This is 10 minutes after.
This is 24 hours later.
So I got through my barrage of four-letter words, got some ice on it, and got on with my day. The Mr called to let me know he’ll be a bit late, so I planned a trip into town that would coincide with his pick-up time.
Fast forward to pick-up time, and I’ve taken a different route to pick him up to accommodate a gas stop. As I passed through an intersection (as it turns out, the intersection I needed to turn at, rather than going through), a car passing across my path. Way too close to avoid collision. I caught her back end, lost control, and slammed into a traffic light pole. Thus ending my drive to the Mr.
There she is, my faithful Baby-Ru. Her final act was to keep me and Beasty safe. Airbags deployed, I got rocked incredibly hard, and I’ll need to replace my car seat, but we both came out of it with no major injuries. Beasty doesn’t even seem to be sore today.
We are so lucky. So incredibly lucky.
Today, I feel a bit worse for wear; I can tell that I hit my face on the steering wheel and then the airbag after it deployed, that I braced my right arm on the wheel or the dash upon impact, and I’ve got some bruising and pain that’s popping up across my chest and abdomen.
But the physical pains are minor in comparison to the panic and guilt I felt over my daughter. I don’t know that I could have handled her being hurt or worse (I won’t even bring myself to put it into words). It took me a minute to get myself freed enough to get to her, and those moments of struggle make me nauseous even now.
Holding her close now, as she sleeps soundly against me in the Ergobaby, I feel primally protective over her; the urge to never let her leave this close-snuggled hold is strong. Even though I’m exhausted and in a fair amount of pain, I can’t bring myself to let her from my arms for more than a few minutes. Even though I am struggling to keep my calm through her fuss, struggling to find the patience for it, I also don’t have it in me to take space from it.
Motherhood is the most challenging, wonderful, awful, painful, rewarding, hardest, weirdest adventure I’ve yet undertaken.