Isabella and I have spent the past 4 days in a different World. We are currently living in a World where your pee is measured, your food is liquid, your veins are poked, your blood is taken, your visitors wear masks and use big words, and you are stuck in a bed that is less comfortable than a road paved with dirt and gravel. We have spent 4 nights and 5 days in this World, and although I am screaming from claustrophobic insanity on the inside, I am a smiling, non complaining Mama on the outside. The room we are in is small. There is no bathroom and to use the bathroom, I have to ask an already very busy nurse, if she can watch my child while I run down the hall to go. The only time I can leave this tiny room is when friends or family come to visit our girl and I run quickly out of the door to escape for a tiny portion of the day. Showers for me come once a day, when Daddy comes to relieve me for a few minutes. These are also located down the hall. The water does not get hot enough and the shower head is extremely low. There is no bed for me to sleep in at night and I have made a recliner my home for the past few days. Besides being claustrophobic and unable to sit still for too long, both of which are just ME, I have issues with clutter and messes. So after pacing the small perimeter of the room, cleaning and picking up any trash and clearing clutter, I spend the next 23.5 hours in my recliner staring at my girl. I could stare at her for the rest of my life and not get bored or grow impatient.
This week, we were forced to imagine our lives without her in them. We were forced to go to a place that no parent should have to go to. Surgery was on the table just a few days ago. Surgery on a child who is taking blood thinners, whose heart is weak and whose body is frail and so unable to fight infection on its own that she has to be here, within the 4 walls of a tiny hospital room any time she catches something as simple as a common cold. Surgery scared us. We knew the risks. We were unsure of the benefits. We prayed and prayed hard and when surgery was taken off of the table, we thanked a God that I had not talked to in months because I had been angry at him. We rejoiced. We pictured her high school graduation, her wedding, her children. We pictured her life. Here. With us.
Through all of this, Isabella has been true to herself. Except for a few bad moments involving scratching and biting a Respiratory Therapist and screaming at a Phlebotomist, she has been her normal, happy and sweet self. Those 2 incidents came when she was beyond her limit of how much she could take. She had hit her wall hours before and just could not deal with any more. I watched her react to those 2 things with tears in my eyes. That was not my daughter. That was a child who has been stuck in this room all week, who has endured several needles going into her veins and taking blood, who has silently allowed nurses to wake her up every time she falls asleep to give meds or take her blood pressure. That was a child who had reached her limits and was being shoved beyond them. That was a child I had never seen and one I have spent the rest of our time here making sure doesn’t appear again.
Bella lights up the room. When someone walks in, her smile and sweet voice is the first thing they notice. She lifts my spirits when I am the one who is supposed to lift hers. She loves with her entire being. She is selfless and giving. She is honest and loving. She is strong and courageous. Isabella has been our miracle since the day she was born and still is.
We are stuck here, in this room for what we hope will not be much longer. I am stuck in this recliner for what I pray will only be a few more hours. Yet, I could care less. I am here with one of Gods gifts. I am here with a child who would do anything for anyone. I am here with a little girl who believes I have the ability to make her better with just a kiss.I am here with a child I can stare at for hours and not get bored. I am with a child I would give my life for, a child whose beauty is endless. A little girl who shines from the inside out. My child. My daughter. From where I sit, I believe I am the luckiest Mama in the World.