november 22nd

I should write this out first and edit it and make sure it makes sense but I don't think that's going to happen. I really need to get this just plain out of my system. Looking at the pictures causes my chest to tighten up but writing it out always helps....

On November 22nd we took Rio to Cranial Technologies to have her head cast. First there were pictures from all angles and she looked left, right, and up with little prodding. The pictures were perfect. Then came the casting.

First the really lovely woman put a stocking over Rio's head and cut a mouth hole for her to breathe and scream out of. It was a little high so I had to keep pulling it down so it was lined up with her mouth. She was howling.

Then the tech applied strips of plaster of paris over my baby's forehead, over the top of her head, around the sides and across her back of her head. Bear had to hold Rio's arms down at her sides. Bear said to take pictures because if we did ever want to see it and hadn't taken pictures, there would be no turning back. So I snapped.

I had flashes of the prisoners trotted out on Iraqi television with the bags over their heads, helpless. My heart wrenched out of my body in about a million different directions. I was hot, cold, scared, furious and shaken to the core. I wondered what the hell I had done to her that her head wasn't perfect. Did I sleep too much on the one side I had been told to? Did I get improper nutrients that made her head softer than usual, not resilient?

Could I have done anything differently to have avoided this torture for my child?

I bawled like an idiot through the whole procedure. It takes ten minutes to cast although it feels as if a solid piece of my soul was chipped away in those minutes. I couldn't think about it for days afterward and have been prone to tears regarding this whole situation. I know Rio doesn't know what's going on, really, and intellectually I know I haven't done anything 'wrong' but my first lesson in parental helplessness really sucks.

Monday we pick up her 'band'. I still don't know how I feel about it.