I’d like to extend my warranty, please

March 13, 2008 at 12:10 pm Leave a comment

     Shortly after C was born, he was put on a ventilator. Barely two days later, he blew a hole in one lung and had to have a chest tube put in. At that point, the doctors wanted him airlifted from our rural hospital to a facility in Denver for a more equipped intensive care unit. I remember watching the flight nurses wheel him away in a contraption that looked like a space shuttle, off into the blustering snowstorm to the airfield. I’ve never felt so alone in the world.

     Numerous sleepless nights, chest x-rays, heart scans, and re-intubations later, we were allowed to take him home with oxygen attached. I remember asking the pulmonologist if he would be okay. A loaded question neither of us understood for what it was. What I was asking was, “Would he be okay?”  What the pulmonologist thought I was asking was, “Would his lungs be okay?”  His answer, wrong on both counts, “Yes, he will be fine.”

     I felt like we were leaving the hospital with a baby under warranty. Truly. So many times in those first years I wondered how this doctor could have been so terribly wrong. I wanted to call him and remind him of us and tell him that no, C was NOT in fact okay, in any sense of the word. In a weird, twisted way, I blamed him for everything, but at the same time, he probably preserved my sanity. If I had known what was coming, I would’ve collapsed on the spot. While he could have never known how much I took his answer to heart, it gave me hope during those really tough years because I still remembered his words. I had put so much faith into the answer to that question, and I think I held onto his answer for dear life.

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Entry filed under: autism. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

To be or not to be Persevera-what?

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