Every parent has felt it.
The crippling fear that the worst will happen to a child.
I sometimes irrationally have pangs of that kind of crippling terror. It's always momentary, and it's usually me being silly. Maybe Alexis actually does the unbelievable and naps for more than an hour. Maybe she stays in her own bed the whole night. Or maybe she catches a cold and I just automatically momentarily jump to worst case scenario.
There was one time when it wasn't such a momentary thing. When Alexis was two months old, she fell ill with a crazy high fever. We battled the illness at home for several days, but when she stopped eating, we had to rush her to the emergency room. We watched in paralyzing fear as a team of nurses and technicians pinned down her tiny body to start an IV. I can still hear her screams when I close my eyes and relive that horrifying moment. We held her tight as she slept 48 hours straight, not even waking to eat. We watched as test after test came back negative, and listened as doctors said it was "just a virus--there's nothing we can do."
The lowest point was when a Resident came in to check on her, listened to her heart for a moment, and said, "Huh. Did you know she has a heart murmur?" We didn't, and we were paralyzed in fear as we waited hours for a more seasoned physician to come in and tell us that it was likely an innocent murmur brought on by the fever. I don't think either Mr. Husband or I breathed all through the tests that were done to confirm that diagnosis.
But, we were lucky. It was nothing. Alexis came home after four days in the hospital and was no worse for the wear.
Heather and Mike of The Spohrs are Multiplying were not so fortunate. They lost their sweet 17-month old Maddie yesterday.
I can't even imagine.
I don't want to.
In lieu of flowers, Heather and Mike have asked for donations to the March of Dimes. We've made a donation, but I want to do more.
If you are in Pittsburgh, please consider joining me in the March for Babies on May 9th along the North Shore in Pittsburgh. You can join the team here.
If you aren't in Pittsburgh, there are teams forming all over the United States. You can visit Sarcastic Mom for a running list.
If you can't walk and you have a few bucks you could spare, please consider making a donation. Every penny helps.