In Which Strange Explains Carefully that He Is Not Freaking Out

Ann and I pride ourselves on being rational people. When we were told that Ann’s health would be jeopardized unless we delivered Sage almost five weeks early, we nodded and signed the papers. When my job vanished and I was told that my choices were a severance package that might have lasted me six weeks or a different, more unpleasant job with the same salary I had been earning, I had a couple beers and a sleepless night, and I signed the papers. (Rational doesn’t necessarily mean that you don’t feel your feelings, just that you don’t make hasty decisions based on them.)

But there’s a minor problem with Sage. It’s a correctable problem, and we’ve already talked to the doctors about it. Her health is not in danger, her development is not in danger, and I’m only choosing to NOT reveal the specific issue for two reasons — I haven’t asked Ann about whether or not to talk about it publicly, and I really am not seeking out advice from non-medical personnel (which is most of you, dear readers).

So please believe me when I tell you that it’s Not A Big Deal. On a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 being “she has a teeny tiny broken fingernail” and 10 being “please sit down before we go over the results,” this is like a 2 at the most. Probably a 1.5 or less.

But now comes the trick of rationality.

It doesn’t feel like a 2. It feels like a 6 or 7, because we’ve been extremely blessed that our biggest problems with Sage have been not wanting to eat when she was in the NICU and having nasty blowout diapers, so in comparison this feels like OH MY GOD WE’RE FAILURES AS PARENTS.

Which is stupid. We’re pretty darn good parents. So far. If I do say so myself.

So, rationally, I remind myself that this is NOT significant, and I shouldn’t freak out. So I don’t freak out.

Except that now, I’m concerned that I’m overcompensating and UNDERestimating the problem, and maybe it IS more like a 6 instead of a 2 and I’m not letting myself be worried ENOUGH.

At least in my darker moments.

Sage is fine. She’s happy and healthy and we’re keeping an eye on anything that seems to need attention. But man, oh, man. I’m not freaking out, except in those moments when I freak out about not freaking out.

Well played, self-sabotaging subconscious.

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6 Responses to In Which Strange Explains Carefully that He Is Not Freaking Out

  1. Welcome to parenthood – you aren’t doing your job if you don’t second guess yourself.

  2. Davesanngel says:

    You do realize that all of her grandparents are now worried, right? 😉

    • strangedavid says:

      Okay, Sage’s grandparents. If you’re reading this, you have a couple of choices. One, call RIGHT NOW RIGHT NOW RIGHT NOW, bearing in mind that this will forever convince us that you don’t think we’re capable of being good parents and we need you to rescue us. Two, we’ll talk soon, so be patient and trust that my arbitrarily assigning the problem a 1.5 to 2 rating is probably too high based on the fact that, rationality or no rationality, I’ve always had a tendency to over-worry.

  3. Not knowing the issue, I can’t say for sure if this advice will be helpful. But you may know the situations we’ve had with Frankie, and all I can say, and we’ve had several medical people tell us this – “It’s better to over react and it be nothing than not react and it be something.”

    Also, if it’s a cold, get her to the doc ASAP! It could easily turn into RSV which is NOT a good thing in infants who were born premature or have respiratory or cardiac issues.

  4. Carrie says:

    Isn’t parenthood fun? When Erik was four months old he had to get an MRI b/c he had a patch of black hair growing straight out of the back of his head. Now that I’m older and wiser I kinda think the doc just wanted a kick-back for the MRI. Her theory was that maybe the hair was also going down into his brain (how does hair grow down into a brain?). Oh, Strange, let me tell you how freaked out I was. . . it was awful. They had to put him under so he would hold still and it about killed me. I was sure he would never wake up again.

  5. Twench says:

    Without knowing the details, I do know your feelings on this. Eric goes for surgery in less than a month. It’s for a minor issue that isn’t life threatening and, despite knowing its the right thing, I’m still freaked out about it.

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