But honestly, I look at the Fall date of September 23rd as a marker. September 23rd, 2010, is when I rushed Makenzie to the hospital. It is a date that forever changed my entire families life. It's a date when my oldest daughter didn't recognize me at all. It is when I looked at her big eyes, trying to stare into her soul, and thought her soul was being lifted away from me.
|Flag catching, 9.20.2010|
My Dad picked me up from the airport, and as he pulled in front of my house I booked it inside to see Makenzie. My Mom looked at me and said, "Erin she isn't doing well and still can't keep things down. She just started the mouth bubbles after the last time we talked. I think she is sicker than stomach flu." Her eyes were as big as saucers, little face was foaming at the mouth, skin pale, body warm but extremities cold and she had no recognition of me. Her mother. The woman who carried her for 9 months and nurtured her every day since birth. I held her and said nervously to my own Mom, "She isn't good Mom. She seems like it could be more than dehydration. I think we should go to Children's Hospital to give her fluids". As my Dad drove the car, I said out loud with a focused tone I didn't know I possessed, "It has to be dehydration. I left 2 days ago with a dynamic 6 year old who was swimming alongside me, and now she seems so weak. She must need to just keep her fluids down." I had no idea how hard her strong little body had been working to fight off all the demons of broken down organs. Calling the pediatrician en route, I was rubbing Makenzie's hand hoping she'd recognize me. She didn't.
|Hospital Life - 9.23.2010-12.16.2010|
Medical terms, questions, big words, talking above Makenzie's head, whispered conversations amongst the doctors, and a feeling of the unknown. You could feel the room's nerves, since the medical team had no idea what was going on with Makenzie. Every few minutes another pediatric specialist came in to do a test they could use to rule out the unknown. When Jack arrived rushing in from work 30 minutes later, there was still no idea. The next hours felt like years. Makenzie's body couldn't hold anything in. It was breaking down. Each organ had decided to fail and not work together. We are a TEAM, our little family unit, and her little team of a body decided to disagree with....each...organ.
|Courage = Embracing Life's Challenges|
|Beautiful Miracle- 8.16.2012|
While watching her playing tag on the playground yesterday, pink leggings tight on her round buns, I felt grateful. Another Mom asked me how she was doing, I said with a smile, "Look at her. She is doing incredible and taking it each day as it comes. She knows what happened in a more mature level now, but she also is aware of how strong she is and what she is capable of overcoming." I believe, September 23rd reminds us all of that.
Visit the Believe in ME Foundation to help provide quality childcare for siblings of hospitalized kids.