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Blythe in the Hospital – Day One

*We are home, and Blythe is well on her way to good health.  But I need to write about this.  I have to get it out of my head.*

Blythe woke up happy and playful, peeking up at me with her huge smile and sparkling eyes.

We snuggled her in our bed, breathing in her smell and giggling as she tickled us.

Suddenly, she got sick.  One moment she was laughing, and the next, she said she “had to spit”.

At first, she wanted to play between vomit sessions.  She didn’t understand why I wouldn’t let her go outside.  Soon, she just wanted to be held. 

Within four hours, she had stopped responding when I spoke to her.

As they drew Blythe’s blood and put in her IV line, I held her head in my hands and whispered to her that I was right there with her, that she would be well soon.  She stared blankly at the wall, never acknowledging the nurses as they worked above her.  She made no sound as the poked and prodded her. 

She just lay there like a sack of potatoes, the sparkle long gone from her eyes.

Before too long, we were lying in Blythe’s hospital bed, waiting for her dextrose-free IV fluid to arrive.  The staff scrambled to find corn free medication, tape, everything.  Severe corn allergy was a complete unknown to them.

I studied my baby girl as she watched the cartoons I’d turned on for her.  Occasionally, her eyes would flicker, the only indication that she was actually seeing the images on the screen.

I wanted so badly to see her smile, to hear her laugh.  To see her do anything besides vomit and stare.

I squeezed her hand, and she squeezed mine back, the first response I’d gotten in hours.  My baby girl was in there somewhere, fighting to come back.

Her Daddy came to see her, and she smiled the faintest smile.  He held her limp body and rocked her back and forth, back and forth.

We felt so powerless to help her.

She slept easily that first night.  The nurses came in frequently, but she would open her eyes for a moment and fall quickly back to sleep.

I lay in the fold-out bed next to her, waking each half hour to kiss her, to feel her, to see for myself that she was breathing, monitors be damned.

Once, twice, three times, her fever spiked.

Her body was riding a roller coaster of sickness, and we were holding on for dear life.

Just before daylight, I was sitting on her bed, caressing her leg.  

Her eyelids fluttered, and she looked right at me. 

Right into my eyes.

And spoke. 

“Mommy, go to your bed.  I’m sleeping.” 

I cried, and silently cheered, and my heart finally broke free of fear’s terrifying grip.

My girl was coming back to me.

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