The thing about babies is this: they don't really care what's going on in your life. Got a migraine? Had a particularly difficult week? Running late? Too bad. Feed me, she says, and then don't blame me when I throw up all over your new outfit.
I try not to stress about the predictable unpredictability. In the end, we all fall asleep with full tummies and warm jammies. I can't stay up wondering and worrying (although, I sometimes I do anyway) about what should have happened, or what could have happened. Ah, the could have's. Here's a story that I give to you, only because someday Sydney should read it and thank her lucky lucky stars.
The backstory: The girl who babysits Sydney on Sunday nights brought a darling little octopus doll that she had made for Syd. It's this cute pink yarn creation, with ribbons and red felt cheeks. I realized that it's not exactly a toy for babies, but I figured if I watched Sydney while she was playing with it then it would be okay. Part of the problem with the doll is that is has...or had...those glue on craft eyes that move around. They are what you would call in the parenting circle a "choking hazard."
Maybe you can see where this is going. But you'd be mistaken.
Wednesday I was rushing around trying to get dinner ready for Jason before I left for my class. I was trying out this new lasagna recipe where you don't have to pre-cook the noodles. So clever. Definitely my kind of recipe, since I have done the whole pre-cook thing and I end up with a big mess. Anyways, I'm scurrying around and tell Jason that I'll just have to call him from the road to tell him what to do for Sydney. While he is of course a very capable parent, he doesn't always know Sydney's eating routine. Things like, she won't want to eat beans for dinner because she had them for lunch. Or she shouldn't have juice before her dinner because then all she wants to do is drink juice and not eat any food. I decide not to tell him that she has learned how to spit her food the distance of the kitchen or that she gets a big kick out of throwing her sippy cup down onto Daisy's head who's usually hanging around the highchair hoping to catch a stray cheerio. I learned these things, I think Jason can learn them too.
Off I go to my class. I call Jason, give him the 411 on Sydney. Get to school. General merriment. Come home late and go to bed. However, Sydney does NOT sleep well. She's up every two hours. Crying, crying. Only wants to be held. Won't go in her crib. By the time 5:30 rolls around, I curse the powers that be and decide to just get up. I go out to the livingroom to pick up some of Syd's toys when I notice that little pink octopus doll is missing an eye. Hmmm. Not good. I look and look. It's important to find the eye. Choking hazard, remember? I ask Jason, Have you seen the eye for this doll. No, he hasn't. Did you see Sydney play with the doll? He thinks hard...she didn't play with it for very long. Well, I think, Daisy must have eaten the eye because I can't find it anywhere. This wouldn't be out of the ordinary for her, but I still find it peculiar.
All day long Sydney is fussy. She eats, but not very well. She won't nap. She won't play by herself. Even her Singing Elmo table doesn't make her happy. Well, I figure she's teething and that's that. For dinner, my brother and his friend come over for leftover lasagna. Jason comes home and we're all chatting around the dining room table. And if you've been skimming the story, HERE'S WHERE YOU NEED TO PAY ATTENTION. So, Sydney is sitting on my lap, actually in a good mood. She's laughing. We're all entertained by the baby. She's playing this game where she sits facing me and then "dives" backward off my lap. At some point I catch a glimpse of something in Sydney's mouth. What the?...I bend Sydney backward AND stuck on the roof of her mouth is THAT EYEBALL. There it is. Staring at me. Oh. My. Gosh.
I admit it. I screamed.
But I didn't swear. I was too panicked.
I reached in, and pulled that eyeball off the roof of her mouth. As far as I know, that eye was stuck in her mouth for 24 hours. TWENTY FOUR HOURS. I didn't actually freak out until a couple hours later. When it happened, we just all thought it was the craziest thing ever and then took turns putting it in our own mouths to see if we could stick it to the roof of our mouth. Jason almost choked on it. My brother's friend, who didn't put it in his mouth and probably thought we were all a bunch of weirdos, remarked, "Well, that's settled, now that that everyone in the family has put it in their mouth."
Later that night I imagined all the terrible things that could have happened. In fact, I had the baby monitor on all night long just so I could wake up and hear Sydney breathing.
Nothing like a little panic to make you start the whole baby-proofing the house bit.