April 23, 2012

"Once our eyes are opened, we can't pretend we don't know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows what we know, and holds us responsible to act." Prov. 24:12

Wow, this verse struck me in a profound way.

Actually, it was more like a slap across the face.

What have I been thinking? In the past year or so there has been a few things occur in my life that made me stand back and tell myself that I need to get off my selfish rear and do something to make a difference in the world. Of course, the world has kept right on turning and I have remained firmly planted on my rear.

Isn't it odd how grief and fear can snap you in to reality? Apparently in my case that snap has been brief and fleeting. Well, nothing like a very direct bible verse to remind one of their broken promises. Those promises made in times of panic and distress, I promise to do X if only You will do Y.

A few months ago my precious nephew was stricken with a rare type of migraine. He has always been a healthy, thriving, funny, lovable, athletic kid. This child stole my heart the very moment he came in to this world and I can honestly say until that time I had never known a love that strong.

You see, I don't have kids of my own - he belongs to my "little brother" and his beautiful wife and I have been immensely blessed as they have always fully and completely shared him with me. (Come to think of it she has offered to give him to me a couple of times!)

Three years later his sister came along. I was worried before she got here. I honestly didn't think I could love another child with the magnitude that I loved him but guess what? She is amazing - love is an amazing thing!

Anyway, on with my story...

My nephew is 15 now. The day of the "incident" was like any other summer day for a 15 year old. He was be-bopping through life, went to soccer practice (it was over 100 degrees that day), tried to con his Mom in to letting him drive home, had a little dinner but then, all of a sudden, something wasn't right. He developed a slight headache and then became sick at his stomach and then, all of a sudden, he couldn't speak...his words became babbles...

His Mom called 911...

The paramedics arrived and checked his vitals and he became a little more lucid...they suggested maybe he had gotten too hot...maybe he was okay now...

But his Mom and Dad knew something just wasn't right...he was transported to the local ER...on the way there things went from bad to much, much worse.

My husband and I were called. We live nearby and we actually beat the ambulance to the hospital. When I first saw him his eyes were glazed over, his speech was very slurred and he was very agitated but he was still my sweet, sweet boy. He actually looked up at me and said, "hi Mim" but his eyes were very confused. Sheer terror swept through me. There was something very wrong.

The doctor and nurses immediately declared that he was on drugs. One nurse actually said, "it's ecstasy, I've seen it a million times".

Well, let me tell you something, I never wanted to be that person who says, "oh no, not my kid" but I knew, NOT THIS KID. He was tested for every "street drug" under the sun. All results were negative. Praise God.

As time went on he became more and more combative. The more sedatives he was given the more combative he became. The medical personnel were very perplexed.

The ER doctor was now on the phone consulting with specialists at Cook Children's hospital in Ft Worth. The doctor ordered a CT scan, a lumbar puncture and every type of blood test they could think of. Nothing. They did determine he was very dehydrated and began giving him fluids.

Four hours later things had become desperate. He was completely out of control and needed to be transported to Cook's. Unfortunately he was so combative that it couldn't be done without intebating him.

Throughout this ordeal I had prayed.
I prayed for him to be okay.
I prayed for the doctor and nurse to be kind and understanding.
I prayed for them to not hurt him.
I prayed for his Mom and Dad.
I prayed for him to not be on drugs.
I prayed for him to not have a neurological condition.

But when they said the word intubate I prayed for him to LIVE.

I promised God I would be a better person.
I would be a better Mimi.
A better wife.
A better sister, sister-in-law, daughter, step-mother, grand daughter.
I would be a better stranger and a better citizen.
Please just let my baby boy be okay.

He was transported by ambulance to the Cook Children's hospital.

When we arrived the staff there were truly gifts from God. They were amazing. They asked a million questions about him. Who he is, what he did and even though he was completely unconscious they spoke to him in the sweetest, kindest manner.

It was determined that he would remain intebated until the following day after they could run the necessary MRIs and other tests. It was important to them that he remain as comfortable and calm as possible.

The next day we met with several doctors - one who was a children's Neurologist. Within minutes of reviewing his test results and speaking with his Mom and Dad about their medical history it was determined he was suffering from something called a "confusional migraine".

Confusional migraines only occur in 5% of migraine suffers. The migraine was more than likely brought on by the combination of dehydration and heat. There is a chance he will never experience it again. If he does the doctor has given specific instructions on what should be done.

They brought him out of the sedation without a hitch. We were warned that due to the amount of sedation he had been given in the ER (enough to sedate a 300 pound man) it might take 24 to 48 hours for him to wake up enough to communicate with us once he was taken off the ventilator. He shocked everyone when after just a few minutes he opened his eyes and gave us the thumbs up when someone spoke to him and asked how he was feeling. Even the nurses were choked up!

He ended up spending four days in the ICU unit of Cook Children's Hospital in Ft Worth. He experienced an allergic reaction to one of the sedative drugs he was given in the ER and required observation and IV medication in order to work through the reaction.

Today, he is back to his healthy, thriving, funny, lovable, athletic self.

As for me, I've got some promises to keep. My eyes were opened and I can't pretend that I don't know what to do. God weighs my heart and keeps my soul and holds me responsible to act.

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