Why me? Part 4
I started sleeping pretty much with one eye open. She was too little and weak to awaken her feeding instinct. Weight gain was key to keep her home. My clothes were becoming loser again, the painful c-section scar was slowly subsiding. But the lack of sleep was developing a strength in me I never knew existed. Get it done, then sleep longer later was my motto. Keone and Kaila came first. God would provide.
I knew something wasn’t right. “She isn’t eating” I explained. “She’s not suckling her bottle”. “Keep stimulating her” they suggested, “Check her output” but I still believe in my soul, it wasn’t over “there is still more to come my child, bare witness”.
I waited in the Urgent care for an explanation. They listened to her bowel, they looked at her eyes, listened to her heart. Normal, no temperature, nothing of warning. I guess it was God’s word and mine against their medical explanations. “Continue to feed her every 2 hours, add rice cereal if you feel she isn’t getting enough.” They repeated. I couldn’t rationalize how shoving 10-30cc’s of formula every 2 hours was enough. I resorted to using droppers, slowly dripping them in her mouth to assure I could accurately measure how much she was eating. I also was measuring her diapers, her ostomy output. Everything going in, was coming out.
I knew better. Third visit, this time with regular pediatrician and my OB-GYN. Everything fine. My OB-GYN felt guilty, he knew my AFP was only off by 1 point. He was chinese and not the warmest of personalities, until my last visit. He gave me a loving pat on the shoulder and wished me the best. I saw his eyes welled up and it touched me. “He sees peace in you, through Me” I bought a book at a book store regarding Down’s Syndrome and it helped me more than I expected, as nothing can prepare you. But I still had Gods voice, the voice that I dared to share with anyone else.
Later that evening I realized Kaila was almost too quiet. “My child, don’t be afraid, be blessed and stay in my strength for comfort” I was thinking ahead, knowing something was ahead. Kaila’s dad had tickets with friends to an SDSU Aztec game. Knowing I wouldn’t object, he left knowing I was going to bring Kaila back to the Emergency Room. We agreed I would page him when I arrived and he would be dropped off if necessary.
Her skin changed colors, she bit down, and spit out any formula she was offered. Her stomach looked swollen. No output. Nothing in, nothing out. I began to pack her things. The family was on alert and again had to leave Keone. I knew he was in good hands, but there was always guilt and loss of time with him that ate me up inside. I had to act fast.
The pediatric surgeon was on vacation, but Dr Downey was covering for Dr Thompson that week. Having already met him once, I felt at peace. We arrived and were sent to the back immediately. God’s messages were so undeniably accute, guiding me, consoling me.
“Hello Dr. Downey!”
Beside him was Dr. Woods another Pedatrician I had met previously.
“Hello Mrs Madrid, sorry to see you back so soon”
“Yeah, I just know something isn’t right”. It had been a while, I hadn’t cried in weeks and I was numb, or maybe I was just becoming stronger. “She’s not eating and I have been doing every” … swallowing my tears, trying to ignore the pit in my stomach….”everything, waking every two hours, dropper feeds, rice cereal-”
“Well, we know you have been proactive and trust you have been on top of things, let’s see whats going on here” he lifted his stethascope. The world stood still. I held my breath. Slowly moving back and forth across her extended abdomen. Then he glanced at Dr. Woods, he then listened also. “Quiet as a mouse” they agreed. They gazed as if afraid to tell me, like I was a child, or too fragile.
“They didn’t get it all did they?”
He raised his eye brows, surprised at my correct response. “Well according to pathology they tested all parts of her bowel, and it should have revealed if in fact it was infected.”
“But what else could it be?”
“We won’t know for sure until we go in and have a look.”
There it was. My gut was God. God was my gut. Undeniably. I believed so much in Him now more than ever before. I clutched to my prayers, as he answered. My life was without fellowship, without church, without my bible, just me and my quiet internal conversations. He was all I had and trusted. All that I could ever rely upon. To never misguide me, to never leave me, never put me down. At the age of 21, nobody would ever believe the things I knew.