My baby had to get a cranial remolding helmet. She has a flat spot on the back of her head, on the right side. I bottle fed her, and shamefully, I only fed her in my left arm, with my right hand. So, naturally, she turned her head into my breast on that side. It affected her torsion and when she slept, she also turned her head in that direction. Because babies have such soft skulls, and we primarily sleep our babies on their backs, it's common for this to happen, and for flat spots to develop. Matthew had one too, but as he learned to sit, it naturally took care of itself. Clara's did not. I wish I had taken her in a couple months ago, but we are where we are. The guilt runs deep, and I know it's not rational, but I still wish I had done things differently.
Other than Jack's broken arm at birth, this is the hardest thing I've had to do as a parent. Oh, sure it could be worse. It could be a life-threatening injury or illness. But it's still really hard to look at my baby in her little helmet and not see her eyes easily. It's hard to lay her on her back and hear her whimper. It's hard to hold her on my lap and not be able to snuggle the top of her soft head. Yesterday, I took it off after two hours and her head was soaking wet and I just started crying. She seems happy enough when she's sitting up, but tomorrow we start sleeping her in it. In a few days' time, she'll be wearing it for 22 hours a day for four or five months. Sad. She's such a good sleeper! Right now she sleeps for 12 - 14 hours a night and I just don't want to disrupt that. Can you imagine sleeping in this thing?!
I know we'll get through it. I even know I'll get used to it. I know she'll get used to it. And the time will pass and we'll be on to bigger and better things and I will be happy for her nice round head. And I will be grateful for modern medicine that we can correct this problem while she's young and doesn't know better.
I'll take my moment to be sad, and then I'll press on. My family has been ridiculously supportive. Thankful for my mom who has given me license to feel sad. A couple days ago, she sent me this text: "It's hard, honey. My heart hurts twice. Once for you, and once for Clara." And from my younger brother who said, "Whew. I was worried she wasn't going to be a hockey player. She's awesome." And for her dad and her brothers who continue to shower her with love and attention. I am so lucky to have the love and support of all of you on this journey. Particularly now, but always. Every day.