Thursday, March 12, 2009

Catch and release

Sam is going through a Mommy phase. He just needs a lot of contact. He has this little game that I call "hug and look around," where he stands up, facing me, squeezes me tight, then pivots around to take in the world around him, then squeezes again. I love it. Love, love it. And it is such a pleasure to be needed like that and to be able to reassure him.

Only...his phase corresponds to the busiest month of work I've had in...years. Certainly in his short life. The volume of work is insane. And I just feel so miserable about all the time I'm spending away from him. Every day, I want to quit.

How can we be almost 40 years beyond the second wave of feminism and have so little to show for it?

My employers aren't cruel or unreasonable. They let me work from home one day a week. They do what they can to spare me the late nights that everyone else is putting in. I have no complaints about them, really. It's just that the nature of the job is incompatible with motherhood.

Blah, blah, blah. It's just a tough situation right now. I miss my baby. My body feels torn in half when I'm gone so much. We went through a lot to have him and I'm tired of feeling like I'm missing everything.

Meanwhile, I finally got around to making an appointment with a rheumatologist. Back when I was diagnosed with antiphopholipid syndrome, my doctor suggested I go in for annual blood draws to assess my anticardiolipin antibody levels. I'm a little overdue.

As far as antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) goes, I'm lucky, if you can set aside the two dead babies, which, of course, you can't. My antibody levels were reasonably low, even at their highest, and they were even lower when they last checked early in my pregnancy with Sam. Barely made it into the "disease" range. It appears to be something that only acts up during pregnancy for me, and Lovenox was my magic bullet on that front.

So I think I'm pretty healthy now. But there's always some concern once you've wandered into the world of autoimmune disease. Sometimes APS is a precurser to Lupus. That's scary. But my doc said I didn't fit the profile, so other than a few weeks when I felt particularly achy after Sam was born, I haven't worried about it.

But it'll be good to get checked out and know whether things are trending in a good direction.

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