being a mom

Momochondria: When Every Banged Head Turns Into A Concussion

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worried-momLast weekend my kids were playing their favorite game of running through the house and chasing each other until one of them bangs into something, when my four-year-old got too close to my two-year-old and tripped her from behind. She fell on her face and he fell on top of her. No bleeding, not too much crying — no big whoop.

A couple hours later we drove to pick up their father from the airport. It’s a pretty long drive, about an hour and a half round trip. On the way back, we hear some strange sounds from the back seat, and realize my daughter is throwing up all over herself. Clearly, she’s carsick, right?

Nope. Not when you have momochondria. Your momochondriac brain immediately goes to the worst, least obvious, and most damaging place possible: a scratch must be flesh-eating disease, a rash is measles, and a clear case of car sickness means your child has a concussion from running around the house earlier.

I know. It’s ridiculous. But please tell me your brain goes there too.

I pull the car over quickly get her out of her seat while she’s projectile vomiting all the contents of her tiny belly. The carseat is covered, the backseat is covered, and I’m covered. Awesome. We do the best possible clean-up job we can, buckle her back into her disgusting seat, and head home.

Even before we get home, I am starting to panic a little: “It must be the fall. I didn’t really check her head. Does she have a big bump on it? Do you think she has a concussion? Don’t kids throw up when they get concussions?” My husband is looking at me like I am a crazy person.

When we get home I strip her clothes off and get her in the bath. As soon as she’s dried off and dressed, I’m doing tests I obviously got from watching Grey’s Anatomy or something:

“Does it look like her eyes are following my pen?” I ask.

“Um, I guess?” Her dad answers.

I pick up the new picture book we got from the store last week and I’m quizzing her on all of the creatures to make sure her tiny (maybe concussed) brain recognizes them:

“Where’s the butterfly?” I ask.

“Bufly!” She screams and points to it. I do the same with the ladybug, fish and every color of flower. She is passing my made up concussion-detection quiz with flying colors. She’s running around the house with her usual energy. The kid is fine.The mom is not.

This is not the first time I’ve totally overreacted to something and it won’t be the last. Effing momochondria.

(photo: Getty Images)