And now its here. Maybe not in New Haven County just yet, but it's in Texas, and it will likely come. Somehow. They havent closed off airline flights from the infected countries, so there is little way of preventing it. And though our hospitals have currently handled the few cases carefully, they would not be prepared for a large-scale outbreak. I keep reminding myself that it's not "easily" spread, not like the flu which can be airborn. Its transmitted through body fluids, and the few patients who have contracted it have come in contact with many, many people who did NOT end up with the virus. It gives me hope.
But my sister works in the hospital, and I work with seniors who often go to the hospital. And a few times today, I've let my mind wander, and if left to its own devices, it keeps going to the scenes that shatter my heart into a million pieces- what if my baby boy gets sick? What if I get sick, or anyone in the family gets sick...what if I can't hold him? What if he starts spiking a temperature, and lies there, whimpering, saying "Mommy...sick..." like he has in the past when he's gotten a bad "bug". This vision plays out and I am entirely in its grip. My mind likes to remind me that Devon likely wouldn't have survived a natural birth, and that through modern medicine, I have been lucky to have him at all. It rationalizes, ever logical, that "isn't it better to have at least gotten to spend as much time with him as you have?...You know... just in case?" But it's not better- it's not enough! It will never be enough! Sometimes, I even find myself looking forward to the times when he will be a rotten teenager so that frustration will help abate this crushing, overwhelming sense of desperate love I feel for my baby.
I often hold him, and kiss him over and over again, repeating one of his favorite words, "more" back to him, until I feel sated enough that I can at least, grudgingly, put him to bed, or say goodbye to him at day care. I sit with him in my lap and read books, and all the while, he is so unaware of how much I am cherishing the weight of him in my lap, the smoothness of his perfectly straight hair against my cheek, the jovial exclamations of "Chicken!" and "Cow! Moooo!" when he sees something on the page he recognizes. Little does he know, I am trying to absorb every sensation of these moments, assimilate them right into the very core of who I am so that, when the day comes when he's too big for mommy's lap, or he's too cool to be smothered in kisses, I can search myself and relive these memories.