I have not blogged in a while but this seems the perfect time to blog. I have always known that God uses bad for good. Sometimes it is hard to see when you are in the mist of the bad. I decided to record our experience at CHOA because one day I will look back at this and smile!
Here is a list of things that I have learned over the past few days and our experience at one of the most amazing hospitals I would say in the world.
1. Friends are just as important and become like family especially in a time of need. Thank you so much Katie, Abigail, Merideth, Jessica, Pastor Tommy, Lindsey Dolph for coming to spend time with McKinley and I during our stay. You are what kept me sane during those 24 hours that seemed like an eternity.
2. CHOA I have always heard was the best hospital but that is what scared me. If CHOA was where we had to be then it must be serious. When you walk down those halls it puts everything into perspective. It is the best and thankful that the best is only an hour away.
3. The SIX letter word (cancer) is the scariest word in the world especially when they are talking about my 11 month old daughter. When this began they did not know what they were looking at other than it was a mass and she could not bend her leg. As the hours progressed and the tests were done the doctor was leaning towards cancer. I am thankful I serve a God who is even a better physician than the best and He had a different plan.
4. God’s prognosis and doctor’s prognosis are different. As I stated earlier the doctor was almost positive this mass was cancer. All the nurses told me we would at least be in the hospital two or three days or longer depending on the MRI. When the doctor called to tell me that the MRI came back normal and that we could go home she seemed so unsure of what she was telling me. She was baffled that it did not show cancer. I however know without a shadow of doubt that God is never baffled and that He is all knowing and His prognosis was good!
5. Never take anything for granted. Easier said than done. As you walk down the halls of CHOA you see children who will never leave, or who have been there for a really long time, or who take it not a day at a time but hour by hour because that is all they have. As we left the hospital on Monday evening we were in the elevator with a mom and son who were also going home. She said I have only been here for a day and I was going crazy. I said yes ma’am I completely understand. Thankful we were getting to go home.
6. I have always believed in the power of prayer but even more so now. There were so many people praying for McKinley and for that I am grateful. As I held her each of the ten times they stuck her to get her IV started I felt His hands just wrap around us. As Pastor Tommy prayed with McKinley and I while we were in the sedation/MRI room I was surrounded by His presence. I am thankful that the veil was torn so very long ago that I can directly approach the throne.
7. MRIs scare me. Not having one but having to lay my daughter on the table. Pastor Tommy and I were taken into a room where they would do the MRI. McKinley had already fallen asleep so I help her in my arms as they sedated her. I laid her down on the table and watched them hook her up to so many tubes. The nurse said mom you can kiss her one last time. I cried as I kissed her and I truly felt that I was really kissing her for the last time. Thankful this precious angel woke up happy and I got to love all over her once again.
8. CHOA truly has the best staff in the world. I have heard the interview and application process there is crazy. I can see why. They only want the best of the best. Tony met us in the triage in the ER. He was a sweet man. Later he came to help attempt one of her 10 sticks to get the IV in. As he was leaving he said I have ordered a very special something since she has been through such torment. Later arrived a blue elephant. I cried as the lady handed it to McKinley. Nurse Kerri and Donna were amazing. They took super care of my precious girl. We were blessed. Ann (the IV team) by far the biggest blessing. If your child has to have an IV she is the one you want. Tony in ER told me that and so did my friend Nikki. She is the best. She even came back by later that day to check on us. Dr. Brooks who was our doctor while we were there. Thankful for the knowledge that God has given her. Brook from radiology was there in sedation, in the MRI while McKinley test were being ran, and she escorted us back to our room. After the MRI they gave McKinley a new toy. We were spoiled while at CHOA.
9. Being separated is for the birds. I missed my family being completely together. Scott was very torn. He was on call for his job, needed to be at home to get the girls to school, and separated from McKinley. We were in constant communication but it is not the same as face to face. The minute they walked into the room last night to take us home McKinley let out a huge squeal. She missed her daddy and sisters too.
10. I have learned through this ordeal that even when my kids are too loud that at least they have a voice to be loud with, as they are running around at least they have the potential to run, and as they argue with each other that at least they are all here to argue with. There are families who are in such turmoil there. I don’t know how people go through something like that without the power of peace from the Heavenly Father. He is the only thing that can sustain us. I am thankful that this ordeal is over. I have cried more in the past few days than I have in a long time. I know that one day I will be able to laugh at this but for now I am loving on my babies and praying for those families who are still at CHOA.