About a month after McKenzie’s second opinion discharge, I found myself racing through traffic with a pale, sweating, heart-racing, barely responding little body slouched in her car seat. The fear that overcomes you when your child’s health decreases overnight is one I have become far too accustomed too.
McKenzie was seen the night before at Nemours Hospital, but sent home on a pedialyte diet. Did you know pedialyte is no longer beneficial after 18 hours? I didn’t know, either. The emergency department quickly assessed her, started an IV and found her blood sugar to be dangerously low, accompanied with dehydration and eventually the norovirus. We spent the weekend at our local hospital while they pumped her with IV fluids and antibiotics.
8 admissions in 9 months – we have struggled to find comfort with good days as we are all too familiar with the bad that will follow. Through the blur of the last nine months, I often feel guilty for feeling that everything involving McKenzie is painful in one way or another. The emotions of joy, sorrow, love and pride are so deep – they leave behind a sharp, raw and exposed pain.
“The human heart was not designed to beat outside of the human body and yet, my child represents just that- my heart bared, beating forever outside it’s chest” – Debra Ginsberg.
We will now add a 7th specialist to our list of doctors. McKenzie is home and her body is fighting the new infection as we spend our days weary of what’s to come. Of course, we know positivity is the only answer that will provide light in our days of what feels to be forever gloom, but while we smile and enjoy the little bits of happiness McKenzie feels between appointments, we also keep our bags packed – car tanks full and defense ready.