Sunday, January 27, 2008

His Mercies are New Every Morning

Sunday morning ...

I have been sleeping in a hospital bed with Lydia curled up right next to me for a number of nights. This morning when she opened her eyes the first thing she did was smile at me.

It sounds dramatic, or cheesy --- but I will not take her smiles for granted ever again. The last five days it was like she was a different person all together. She is normally so interactive and grins in response to us --- I missed that -- today feels like a turning point to me. She is crying less and she is responding more. I feel more hopeful than I have in many days. I think she is really going to be okay.

On Friday afternoon it felt like the finish line was in sight. There was a sense of relief for all of us. I talked to the kids and told them I would see them on Saturday. Jen and I were sitting in the room chatting, Troy had left to go back home. I kiddingly said, "It's Friday night, we should order pizza!" It was a joke but Jen went downstairs and found someone who was willing to go get us pizza. I was impressed. When the pizza came we were giddy -- it might sound dumb, but pizza and other treats that we're accustomed to are SO MUCH BETTER in Haiti. A crappy piece of pizza in Minnesota is a Heavenly piece in Haiti. We were sitting on the bed eating and talking and Lyd was just laying there fussing a bit. All of a sudden she stiffened up from head to toe. It caught my attention and I picked her up. Her fists were in tight little knots and they started shaking. I said, "Jen, something is wrong with her." Next her eyes started going back and forth from left to right at a pace that I could not duplicate for you if you were sitting here with me. It was so terrible looking, it was so scary. Jen left the room. I was still not really sure what was happening, I just knew it was scaring me terribly. I kept yelling, "Jen, Jen -- something is wrong ..."

Jen had gone to the hall to get the nurses going on finding medication to stop the seizure. Jen came back in and gave instructions to the nurses and everyone gathered round Lydia on the foot of the bed. At that point I knew everything I was asking and saying was a distraction and not helpful, so I left the room. The next twenty minutes were the longest 20 minutes of my life. I would walk by the room to be sure I could still hear her --- meaning she was alive. I was a freak. I prayed and cried out loud and people stopped to stare at the crazy white lady.

About 20 minutes later Jen came out to tell me Lydie was given meds to stop the seizure and that she was kind of out of it but that she was okay. Lyd has had a lot of trouble keeping the IVs so at the time the seizure happened she did not have one in. Jen shaved one side of her head so the nurses could put a new IV in her scalp in order to get the medication that would stop the seizure into her quickly. Jen filled me in on the plan to have a cat scan and we talked about what we would do if it came back showing anything. We called Troy and told him to grab our passports and come in to Port. I talked to Tess and asked her if we ended up leaving Haiti if she could handle the kids. Her response was incredible. She said, "Tara we will be fine, you do whatever you have to do to get Lydie better." I was as moved by her bravery as I was anything, I was sobbing.

Thank God leaving Haiti was not required. Thank God Jen was with Lydie when the seizure occurred. Thank God Lydia's brain looks normal - even perfect. Thank God that today Lydie woke up smiling. Thank God that the finish line for this race just reappeared.