Friday, March 30, 2018

Well Again...Back from the Inferno

The greatest fear of any mother is for the loss of a child. I came face-to-face with this fear three days ago and I am grateful to be on the other side of it, for now. Life is so, so precious. Children are the greatest gift, bestowed by heaven but they are not ours to keep, only ours to love and care for, as they pass through our wombs and through our lives. But it is a hard lesson to remember. 

My darling youngest boy went from flu to walking pneumonia to rhabdomyolysis in the blink of an eye, and from "recovering" to stat blood work and hospitalization faster than I knew possible. He is home and well, and he never knew how close he was to truly not well, but I did. And it was terrifying. I could clearly see the catastrophe of a young life lost because of a technical failure. I could very well imagine the muscle loss breaking down proteins that led to kidney failure and...the unmentionable.

At the time, I was dealing with the all-encompassing pain and fear of my baby (no matter how old, every child will remain forever your baby). He was in absolute dread of a needle, any needle, and especially the IV insertion. The two blood tests of the preceding days had drained him of all his courage. What he desperately needed, now, however, was an IV delivering fluids to begin to restore what he had lost.

Things went downhill, to begin with, at the infiltration of the initial IV site, which meant pain, swelling, redness, and a redo after about a half hour. Then it was failed attempt after failed attempt to place the port in a vein in a way that would allow the fluid to flow. He bit into his stuffed reindeer and did not cry, though he was terrified of doing it all again. I smiled and told him how brave he was and that now he would never be afraid of a mere needle again. I did not show that I was dying inside and losing faith by the minute that life would ever be the same again because things were proceeding in a way that only tv shows and that ER article in the New York Times ever talked about. The sixth attempt, over three hours later, finally took. The nurses were kindness itself, but I still really wanted to blame, yell, punch, shake someone into action. I refrained, and stayed focused on looking and acting calm for my kiddo.

I know families who go through this on a monthly or weekly basis for a child. My heart goes out to you. There is nothing so hard. 

He is well, and the whole family is grateful. Easter is soon to come with the celebration of life reborn, of the spring come again. I thank the Universe, the Great Mother and the Lord above, that my children live, one more day.


  1. This sounds like a traumatic experience. I am so glad to read that it turned out well!

  2. Thank you, Eva, I appreciate your kind wishes. I know I wrote the post in a quick burst of "I need to write this out," but it was a truly humbling experience. When you feel, close-up, how very fragile it all can be, it does something to your faith in life, in circumstances. I was shaken, yet found a strength deep inside this little boy in front of me and in myself, that had been hidden. I think maybe it had even been dormant, as the complacency of normal, everyday life we take for granted, live, argue, struggle, get through, takes over with a relentless rhythm and leaves no time for deep contemplation. It also may take all we have as far as energy, but in a peaceful, domestic existence, there is less need to dig to our very depths and find out what is really in there. I am grateful for your comment, Eva, and offer many thanks for all those who have reached out via text, phone calls and (cooked for my family!!!) this past week. You are making the world a more beautiful place; much love to you.


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