Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Tooth Fairy Part 2

Poor Emmy. She developed an abscess tooth which required emergency oral surgery for extraction. Colleen and I were beside ourselves thinking about putting our little baby under anesthesia. You know how they scare the hell out of you by telling you "in rare cases, patients do not wake up. And with this child, because there is no medical record, the risk is much higher, so please sign all these papers promising not to sue our asses. " So reassuring.

We spent the evening before the surgery talking Emmy through all the steps and what was going to happen. She awoke the next morning begging for breakfast, but we could not feed her because of the surgery, so we promised to pack her a big snack for after the surgery.

Now at the Doctor office, Emmy was a champ. Very calm and pleasant. The nurses could not believe she is a 4 year old. They said over and over "Four year olds just do not behave this way. She is remarkable." She really is. Emmy has an amazing tolerance for pain.

About to go under, the Doc is holding the mask near Emmy's face and gently wafting the anesthesia toward her nose. He is telling Emmy about the wonderful strawberry smell and how much Emmy will enjoy that. Emmy scrunches up her nose and asks Colleen "What is this stuff?" Colleen says "It's gas." Emmy about fell on the floor laughing. "Gas Mama? It not gas! Gas really stinks. You're tricking me Mama!" and she went on and on like Beavis and Butthead until, like in mid-laugh, she suddenly passed right out.

Surgery successful. Big fat molar extracted. Emmy to recovery.

As Emmy awakes, still super groggy, the Doc shows Emmy to the tooth. Emmy, even though she is cross eyed and silly, doesn't miss a beat and says "Does this mean the tooth fairy will come visit me?"

Our final sledding party

The snow is disappearing fast. Last Sunday was probably our last sledding day of the season - so we made it a special one.

First, it was almost 60 degrees out, so we let the kids take off their coats, hats, and mittens.

Second, we sled on a golf course, and the clubhouse restaurant had just opened for the season. After sledding, we visited the restaurant for a pizza party.

It was a memorable way to end a wonderful sledding season.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Still missing Mama

Tonight it took us almost 3 hours to get Emmy to sleep. Turns out one of her little girlfriends in preschool, Kiera, was adopted by her Grandmother today. I don't know the back story of why that happened, but it set Emmy off.

Emmy was sad for Kiera that Kiera's Mommy was not able to take care of her anymore. And the more she thought about it, Emmy became sad that her own mother was not able to take care of Emmy anymore. Then Emmy started fretting about what would life be like if something were to happen to her new American mother. She was inconsolable. It was hard.

Just like Marin the other night when something out of the ordinary catalyzes this chain of thoughts that cascade out of control.

Monday, March 9, 2009

In your Eyes

We were driving in Portland Sat evening and slowed down for a bunch of flashing blue lights. As we passed, I saw a man handcuffed and thrown across the hood of his car. Marin, who was in the rear on my side, saw the same scene. Marin's radar went on high alert and she started asking a lot of questions.
- Who is he?
- Why does the policeman have him?
- Why is his arm broken? ( it wasn't, but it was bent oddly because of the handcuffs)
- What did he do?
- What happened here?
- Where will the policman take him?
- Will he get away?
- What if he comes to our house?
- Can he find me here? and on and on and on

When we arrived home, Marin continued the questions and began to cry. She could not, or would not, explain why she was crying.

When Marin woke up Sunday morning, she picked up right where she left off, and the crying escalated to he point of a panic attack. I was rocking her, holding her, doing everything I could think of to comfort her. Nothing worked.

Finally I asked "Marin, did you see men like that in Africa?" She said yes. I asked her what happened to men like that in Africa. She said "Sometimes the policeman shoot him and kill him. Sometimes he gets away. If he gets away, he comes to peoples house and kills them."

It's really interesting how people's brains work. Just when we think Marin is totally comfortable and 100% adjusted, something quirky like this will jump out of nowhere and reawaken some frightening memory of hers. She is such a sweet kid. It's just hard to imagine the demons she harbors. We did not realize she was exposed to so much violence.

Monday, March 2, 2009


I took Marin to the Conference Basketball Championship at the local college. We walked into the gym and took our usual seats. Marin asked to sit somewhere else, so I told he to choose a new seat. "Really? Anywhere I want? You come with me, Daddy?"

So Marin chooses two seats right smack in the middle of the visiting students section - Emmanual College from Boston. Marin was so excited, almost giddy, then this look of total contentment and comfort came over her face. I asked Marin if she was happy. She said she was.

"Why are you so happy?"

"Look at all the brown skin people! We are sitting right here with all of them."

I guess I need to get her out of maine more often.