Tuesday, December 8, 2009


This is a heavy one. You've been warned.

       The other day I read Silas' baby calendar and ran accross something I hadn't thought about in a long time. When he was 6 months old, he had Intussusception. It's a subject that's a bit upsetting to revisit but it has been on my mind and has sparked something in me. For those of you that don't know the story, I'll fill you in.
       One day, it was a Thursday morning, Silas started throwing up every few hours. He couldn't keep anything down so we did the usual: clear liquids to try and keep him hydrated. By Friday evening I called the nurse and to my surprise she told me to take him right away to the ER and to go straight to Children's Hospital in Dallas. So we did. He was admitted after they couldn't find the cause of the vomitting (no fever, etc.). Here are some pics taken before things got much worse.

       He continued to throw up more frequently (eventually became dry heaving with a little bit of green stuff every 20 minutes). Long story short, the doctors and nurses kept saying it's probably just a stomach virus and we'll keep him on IV fluids until it runs its course. Meanwhile my mom, who is a nurse, repeatedly asked the nurses and doctors to check for some kind of obstruction because his vomit looked like bile, which is just straight stomach acid, meaning nothing is getting through. We were told over and over that it was just a virus, don't worry.
      We waited longer, he kept throwing up. We, mainly my mom, argued with doctors and nurses over vomit colors and smells. My mom was convinced it was bile, indicating an obstruction. Doctors and nurses were convinced it was a virus and therefore felt compelled to take extremely long amounts of time to get various results or listen to anything my mom had to say. Me and Brian worried. Alot. We felt helpless as Silas continued to fade away, waking only to violenty heave and colapse again.
       By Sunday morning Silas was almost completely unresponsive. He just didn't have anything left. He was a limp noodle when we carried him to get x-rays redone at my mom's urging. When the x-ray results came in, things started happening. Surgeons and some other important doctors had a meeting and said they thought it could be intussusception, where your intestines sort of act like a telescope and block the path, and they needed to go forward with a barium enema.
       It was the hardest thing I've ever had to experience as a mom. The procedure took quite a while and I don't like going into the details but it boiled down to having to decide do I stand there helpless while my baby screams and pleads with me with his eyes from 20 feet away or do I run out of the room because my heart can't take it and abandon him. I did a little of both.
       But after what seemed like an eternity, we had good news. The enema worked. It blew enough air into his intestines that they popped back out to normal. Soon a constant flow of doctors and surgeons were coming by our room to congratulate us that they (and by "they" I'm sure they were referring to my mom) caught it in time. When we finally got home I had a complete meltdown when I read that most children die within the time period Silas had it.
       This was something that changed me as a mother. And looking back, I realize that I don't like the way it changed me. It made me scared of any type of illness. It made me very untrusting of doctors. It made me overprotective. Living in fear is very oppressive.
       But recently I've been trying to turn the tide. I want to be thankful for every moment I have with my children and not live in desperation that I have to protect them from every danger. I want to create an environment of peace and strength for my family. I want more confidence that no matter what God will not abandon us and will get us through it. And I want to be better at remembering that this life is not all there is. We've got alot to look forward to.   

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