Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Them stones, them stones

You know the fairytale of the Princess and the Pea?

Let me remind you: Handsome Prince. Dark and stormy night. Bedraggled chick turns up on the palace doorstep. Prince orders the royal housekeeper to hide a pea under the chick’s mattress. Chickyboo tosses and turns. She piles on 20 mattresses. Then 20 feather mattresses. Still tosses and turns. Ergo – she must be a princess (or a royal pain in the ass, if you ask me). The end.

It’s 3am on Valentine’s Day, and I can’t sleep.

The Lionheart and the Squishy Gorilla are both fast asleep, cocooned in their mosquito nets, bless them. They’re not to blame for my insomnia. It’s the fucking pea under my mattress that’s to blame. Except this particular pea is actually a kidney stone. Not mine, thank goodness. My hubby’s.

I’m looking at it right now – the urologist kindly put the offending asteroid into a plastic cup for us to take home this afternoon as a souvenir of our 10 days of hell. It makes a lame paperweight.

It started last Sunday night when I had to rush my husband to the emergency room. Now, the logistics of a medical emergency are tricky for the Lionhearts. Remember: Travis can’t walk so he needs to be transported with his special needs pram. And obviously three-month-old Ryan needs his own pram too. And mommy only has two hands.

One of which will be needed to fill out a stack of forms in big block letters. Another hand will be needed to feed Ryan a bottle, because he always seems to need a bottle just when I’m the most overwhelmed. Another four hands will be needed to steer the two prams between the X-Ray department and the doctors’ cubicles. And I need a free hand to squeeze my husband’s hand, because he’s in the most excruciating pain imaginable!

You see my dilemma?

THANKFULLY my aunty Pet and uncle Eddie are saints, and rushed over to watch the kids so that I could get my husband to the emergency room.

Long story short: he tried to pass the kidney stone himself. After eight full days of PAIN-FEST, my stubborn-as-a-mule husband caved and was booked into hospital to have it ‘lasered’ and ‘basketted’. On Valentine’s Day.

And because he’s a private patient, this fiasco cost around R35 000. This, when I look at this tiny calcified rock on my desk, makes me realise that it’s probably worth more than the diamond in my wedding ring. Holy mojitos!

Oh, to be an eight-armed Hindu deity. This week has been hard. You know, when you have a sick or disabled child in the mix, and you are playing a dual role of parent-slash-caregiver, you simply cannot afford to be in anything but 100% great shape.

I’m not saying we’re all in ‘triathlon-Iron-Man-climb-Mount-Everest’ shape, but I have never met a special needs mom I would call ‘obese’. All the lifting and carrying and spoonfeeding and late nights. It’s impossible not to build up muscle tone and a deep well of stamina.

And because we have two kids who both need a high level of care, my husband and I both need to be in great shape. When one of us is ill, that means the other parent quite literally can’t even leave the house. Why? For starters: two prams. I missed every fucking deadline for every fucking article I needed to have written, because I’ve had to type with armfuls of children between me and the keyboard.

My clients don’t care that my husband is ill, or that I have a disabled son, or a three-month-old baby. (They shouldn’t have to - and I’m a professional, dammit! Copy Candy is my third baby.)

It’s been stressful to say the least. It’s been a ringmaster-less three-ring-circus, to be more accurate.  

But I’m ranting now. And it’s 3.45am.

Thank the Big Guy Upstairs my poor husband is on the mend; I’ve had a kidney stone in my heart watching him soldier on through the pain these last few days. I love you, sweetie.


  1. I've been wondering why you've been MIA and now I know. You've been hectic, busy and you've definitely had your hands full. I hope your hubby makes a speedy recovery and things go back to some sense of normal asap!

  2. Wow. Sending you the hugest hugs. You are indeed WonderWoman! Hope that hubby gets better soon...

  3. Ai, hope he is 100% now and that you get some rest and feel better too.

  4. Hope hubby gets better soon. Shoo! I can imagine what a hectic time its been!We don't really know how strong/resilient we are until being strong/resilient is the only choice we have!

    1. Your poor hubby, glad he's on the mend now!
      2 prams must be hectic!
      Have you considered a sling at all for the littlest one? That's how I make it around a lot of the time, the bigger one in the pram and the little one either in my Earthbabies ring sling or in my Boba baby carrier!


Thanks for sharing, Lionheart readers. ROAR!