Today I had to do something I have been putting off for about a month. I have had a Western blot kit sitting on my kitchen counter since the end of April, waiting for me to get up the intestinal fortitude to take Lydia in for a blood test. (My mom didn’t let us say “guts” growing up. It was too vulgar. We were supposed to say “intestinal fortitude” instead.)
ANYYYYYYYYYYYWAY, after every other child tested positive for Lyme, it was pretty obvious that we needed to have the wee one tested, too. Only… that’s hard. First of all, every time I would take one of the kids into the lab, the technicians would look visibly irritated that they had to poke a kid. It is obviously not their favorite thing to do.
Secondly, blood tests on babies is THE WORST EVER.
Number next, I have a whole bunch of emotional baggage riding on the outcome of her test that is rather illogical, and I prefer to run away from it rather than face it like a grown up.
But to sum it up, while I feel guilty for passing Lyme to the first four kids, I didn’t know I was sick until after I had Kitty. I had no idea that I was passing terrible-ness on to my offspring. (I mean, worse stuff than my bad skin and awful eyesight.)
I had Lydia knowing I was sick, albeit with what I thought was MS at the time. And my neurologist told me that the possibility of passing MS on to my children was rather small, so we concluded that it wasn’t something we were worried about enough to prevent having another. And I remember thinking that this child would probably have severe allergies, too, and should I have another one if it meant they would have to deal with life threatening allergies their entire life?
Basically, I had another child knowing I was sick, suspecting that this child would also end up with allergies like the rest, and deciding that I wanted another baby despite all of that. So, the guilt, sweet mother, if she is sick… will be crushing.
(So, when people say to me, “Mary, are you going to have another baby?” I think, “If you had ANY IDEA how guilty I feel about passing this plague around to my whole family, you would never, ever ask me that again.”. But, instead I say, “Oh, haha… No. I’m done.” And they say, “OH, I’VE HEARD THAT BEFORE!” and then I try to say something self-deprecating and CHANGE THE SUBJECT BECAUSE DO YOU REALLY WANT ME TO START CRYING RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU, PEOPLE?!!! What I’m trying to say is, please don’t ask me that anymore. Thanks.)
And so I’ve been hiding from the impending blood test for a month. But, time’s up. It had to be done.
It went like you would expect. A lot of screaming. A very unhappy and reluctant lab technician. A very guilt-ridden mother. Oh well, it’s over.
It is an “Emma” litograph. The entire text of Jane Austen’s Emma is right there on that fabulous piece of art. Isn’t that wonderful?
And lastly, it is that time of year when the bull snakes start coming out. (Jennifer, LOOK AWAY!)
I have seen two on our dirt road in the last week. I accidentally ran over the other one and felt so guilty about it! (That is not sarcasm. I really did feel terrible. –Do you know that when you are a chronically sarcastic person that people have no idea when to take you seriously? I encounter this problem frequently. I will try to answer a question helpfully and people will say, “You’re messing with me, right?”. DARN MYSELF!)
But, for reals, I like snakes. This guy was quite long, I’d say as tall as Kitty at least. We hung out with it for awhile until it got sick of us and slithered back into the weeds. I find snakes so interesting… I love the way they move, how cold and smooth their skin is. The fact that they eat rodents doesn’t hurt, either.