Om Namah Shivaya


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

My pregnancy, the heat, and my Drum Line...

Chemo 2010
*Sigh* I'm having to revert back to the statement I used two seasons ago when I was going through cancer/chemo; "I just can't do that right now"...and quite frankly it sucks.  Don't get me wrong, I am over the moon that we #1 got pregnant so quickly and easily, #2 it's been a relatively *easy* pregnancy thus far, and #3 we're almost to the end result of having our little boy enter our lives for realzies, it just sucks big time that I have to take a back seat *AGAIN* to the *one* thing that keeps me going in my job.  My Drum Line.

Two Thursdays ago at my baby appointment, I asked the doctor I saw (three rotate through the clinic I go to) what *his* opinion of me and marching band camp was.  This was the last of the three that I hadn't seen yet, so it was nice to be able to ask him and get his opinion.  You see, the first time I asked this question was a while ago when we hadn't been locked into week after week of 100+ degree weather, and I thought maybe it was time to revisit this topic again.  Trust me, I'm no dummy.  I know it's hot, *believe me!* I know it's hot.  I know the ground is saturated with the heat, the astro-turf and track we march on even more so.  I know being outside from 730/8am until 10am at 32weeks pregnant *probably* isn't the smartest idea in the world, but it's a hell of a lot better than being out there from 4-6pm when it's even hotter.  So I had to ask...and I know some of you are thinking "WHY?!  Play the pregnancy card!  Stay inside!  Keep cool!  Bow out, it's okay, you're pregnant"... 

Carrollton 2011
That's just it.  I had to ask because my heart and soul go to these kids for three months at the beginning of the school year.  Drum Line is what keeps me SANE in this insane world known as "being a public school teacher".  It's the ONE thing I can do and do well that people stand up and really take notice of.  It's the one thing that makes me so proud at times I think my heart is going to absolutely *burst* when they perform, whether it be Drum Line or Ensemble, it's a bright spot for me, *and* for them in our busy, hum-drum, not always making sense lives; and now I have to back down...*again*.

I asked the doctor what his thoughts on it were, and he asked me to clarify for him exactly what I would be doing were I not pregnant.  "Outside around 730/8am until about 10am, on the astro-turf marching field in the middle of the kids, whackin' my gock block yelling 'Left! Left! Left!', showing them how to march and schooling a handful of them when they do it wrong.  Then inside for music rehearsal till 12."

He listened intently while I told him what *I* expected of myself, but also that *I* knew that I had to listen to my body this time around and really stay hydrated because it's not just about ME anymore.  It's about our little boy who is living inside me right now and I have to protect him.  I know that, I get it.  I just want to make sure I don't do anything to jeopardize his health, or mine, *but* I also don't want to sit on the sidelines if it's not absolutely necessary.  If you know me, then you know that I'm someone who can push myself to the absolute limits and then beyond (last year's Drum Line competition show anyone??), but I do it for THEM.  I do it to show them that they have that person they can rely on to push them to *their* limits, and then scootch them just a little bit further than they thought they could go because *I* knew they could.  This is what I do, it is who I am, it is where I belong.

He took all of my statements into consideration, nodding and "ah-ha-ing" at all the appropriate moments then took a deep breath and gave me my fate.  "Mrs. Stout, I cannot, in good conscience, allow you to be outside with those kids, on your feet, carrying this baby, marching around, and doing what you do, in THIS heat.   It would be *completely* different if you were sitting in front of me at 16weeks pregnant, OR, if we were just sitting around 80/90 degrees out there, but you're 30weeks5days pregnant, and will be 32weeks1day pregnant when this marching band camp hooey starts", yes folks, he used the word "hooey", and I just can't allow you to do that." 

DAMN.  I knew that was what he was going to say, of course I knew it, I'm not stupid, it just sucked to actually hear it come out of his mouth, and then see it in writing when he handed me a note for school.  I then brought up the back to school parade & rally on Aug. 11th, and KU Band Day, which happens to be two weeks prior to JP's due date.  "Uh, no,"  he said, "You can't march either of those." "How about a compromise?" I asked.  "Can I at least get my kids warmed up and in formation for the back to school parade, then I PROMISE, I will get in my car and drive to the high school to await their arrival in the relative comfort of the gym".  "Yes, I suppose that would be okay as long as you promise to NOT march it."  Of course.

KU Band Day 2011
As for KU Band Day?  That's probably going to be a total and complete wash for me, which really makes me want to cry.  I suppose I could have Tim drive me to Lawrence where I could get the kids warmed up at South Park, get my hug from TMS, put them in formation, and then leave them to go watch the parade with my folks & Tim, but can I put my heart through the torture??  I guess, really, at that point we'll know what JP's doing in terms of making his arrival, cause I'll be 38weeks pregnant so I may not be able to physically go anyways.  Ugh.  #BroccoliFudgeCheeseandRiceonaSTICK! *hangs head*  

I guess it's all out of my hands.  I have to let it go and let God.  I have to trust that they will do what I've taught them.  They'll be able to take charge of everything and gear up for their competitions, parades, and field show's without me there.  

All of my teacher friends who have kids have reassured me time after time that "Once your baby boy is here, the furthest thing from your mind is going to be school, let alone your Drum Line."  On one hand I can understand that, but I'm not sure they fully understand.  I spend three-four years with this group molding and shaping them and watching them grow, then help send them out into the world.  They ARE my children.  I may not have birthed them, but I care for them like they are my own.  I listen to their fears, and celebrate their triumphs.  I nurse broken hearts and hand out advice.  I take them home, and buy them food.  I remind them of where they need to be and when.  I make sure they wash their clothes for competition, and I call them to wake them up.  They call me Mom.  How can I forget about them?  Simply put, I can't.  I will do what it is I need to do to protect me and our child growing inside me, but I will NOT forget about them and just walk away like they don't matter.  

Our James Porter LeRoy, 20weeks
So, although I have to use that phrase again "I just can't do that right now", I don't like it.  I'm trying to set them up for success as best I can before the craziness of school starts, and hopefully I will be able to wind them up and let them go when the time comes.  

I hope so...  

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