A Rude Awakening & a Goodbye

I had been asleep for about a half an hour last night when Nellie woke up screaming.

And when I say screaming, I don’t mean “I’m scared”, “I’m awake” or “I’m pissed” screaming. My child was emitting a blood-curdling, high-pitched shriek that I have never heard before and I hope to god I never, EVER hear again. Upon hearing that god-awful, terrifying scream I shot out of bed and was barreling down the hallway and throwing the door to her room open before I even knew what was happening. I turned the light on and hurried to her crib and grabbed her out of it, inspecting her quickly. She was whimpering and crying and I was on the verge of having a heart attack. Once I saw that she was okay and unharmed, I started to shake and sob. Josh had come into the room right after me and was asking if everything was okay. I clutched Nellie to me and just cried. I had to sit down with her in the glider, I was shaking so badly. I couldn’t even talk, but as soon as I could I explained that I’d never heard such a noise and she scared me so bad. I don’t know what I was expecting to find when I threw her door open, but with a noise like that I guess I figured it could only be something horrible.

I noticed a foul smell coming from her so we checked her diaper and found a large, round, hard poop. It must’ve been painful and woken her up from a dead sleep, hence the scream. I changed her diaper and soothed her as she was still whimpering a little. I was still crying and shaking but I got her cleaned up and told Josh to go ahead back on to bed, that I needed to be with her for a few minutes. He turned the light off for us and I took my Nellie and held her to me, rocking in her glider. I couldn’t stop the tears as I held her against my chest. I have never, ever been so terrified in all of my life as I was when I heard that screaming. I almost could not bring myself to put her back down in her crib. We rocked like that for about ten minutes before I finally calmed down enough to put her back to sleep. I did not know that level of terror existed. I have never in my life felt as afraid and panicky as I did when I hear my child shrieking like that. I hope with every fiber of my being that I never feel that again because just remembering it makes me feel sick.

She woke up crying (not screaming, thankfully) almost every hour after that and I got up with her each time. Normally if she wakes up crying, I give her a few minutes to see if she’ll fall back asleep but last night I went in almost immediately. I had to be close to her after the scare she gave me.

I decided to stay home with her in case she was sick, and so we could both get a little more sleep.

I noticed as I was passing by Josh’s phone this morning to use the bathroom that he had a missed call and a voicemail from around 6 A.M. Unfortunately, a call like that can usually only mean one thing. I looked at who the missed call was from and as I suspected, it was from his dad. His Nana died last night.

I thought it was odd that Nellie had such a hard night the very same night that her great-Nana passed away. Maybe the two things are related and maybe they are not. I know that Nana is at peace now, but our family’s got some sadness ahead of us in the next few days.