I have to be honest. 2012 was not an easy year for me. It was a keep putting one foot in front of the other kind of year. I’m one of those people who gets really excited about the new year and given how difficult 2012 was for me, I was especially excited for the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013. I love January 1st in the same way that I love getting a new fresh notebook. It’s a completely blank slate. It’s symbolic of a fresh start and loaded with possibilities.
Within a few days of the new year, I found myself in a hospital room with Gus surrounded by doctors and nurses with concerned looks on their faces and no answers as to what was wrong with Gus. We spent the beginning of 2013 in the pediatric ward at Cedars Sinai. It’s a long story filled with mystery and miracle. Basically, Gus’s symptoms looked like he was in keteoacidosis but his lab results looked the opposite. His blood sugar was dangerously low (45) and his bicarbonate index was also dangerously low. I didn’t even know what a bicarbonate index was until this happened. Basically, it’s the index that controls and maintains the metabolic functioning in the body. A normal index is 23. A kid who has severe dehydration to the point of hospitalization is 14-15. Gus’s bicarbonate index when we got to the emergency room was a 7. With no explanation as to why.
As a parent, your biggest fear is that something will happen to your child. And when something does, it shakes you to your very core. Unfortunately, this is not the first time I have had to see my son in such distress and beg God not to let my baby die. It sounds dramatic, but only because it was. That’s where we were. The hardest part was that the doctors didn’t have any answers. They couldn’t explain why he had gotten so sick, what was wrong with him, or if he was going to get better.
The level of powerlessness that I felt brought me to my knees. I must have said every prayer that I knew how to pray. In every kind of way. It was the only thing to do. And then for reason, 36 hours later, at 5 in the morning, Gus woke up and asked for a cheeseburger. By the next afternoon, he was begging to go for a walk and asking me why I looked so sad. When I told him that mommy gets really worried when he gets sick because I love him so much, his reply was simply, “But mom- you don’t have to be sad. I’m not sick. I’m better.”
And he was right.
Have you ever watched a team of doctors in a room, scratching their heads and looking at each other with confusion as they try to figure out what just happened? I have. All they kept saying over and over again was, “it really is a mystery. It doesn’t make any sense.” Even the nurses were amazed. When I brought him into the play room to play with the toy trains, a bunch of them gathered at the window to watch, pointing him out to other nurses, and saying- “can you believe that’s the kid in 4021?” I saw their exclamations of “wow’s” and “no ways.”
The doctors are still saying it’s a mystery. But I’m not. It’s not a mystery to me. It was a miracle.