Thursday, August 28, 2008


Having a child in the hospital has got to be one of the most difficult experiences in life. Our hearts hurt so bad as we watched little Eli get poked and prodded and tested and monitored. And the thing is, we had it easy. Pneumonia is an easily-curable thing. We came in on Saturday night with a sick baby and left on Wednesday afternoon with a well baby.

As we were leaving I glanced into the hospital room of the baby next door to Eli, who was obviously very sick. And I realized that those parents have a rough road ahead of them. In the elevator one day I saw a little girl, probably about 11 years old, who was crying because the steroid shots she is on make her face look puffy. An 11-year-old shouldn't have to experience the side effects of steroids on her appearance. I passed by another little girl waiting outside the radiology department who had lost all her hair, probably due to chemo. A child shouldn't have to know the meaning of the word "oncology." That place is filled with sick children, all getting the best care in the world, but all experiencing a nightmare. And to be a parent watching their child suffer so much must be absolutely heartbreaking.

So in the midst of our difficult 4 days, I found myself thanking God for our health and for the health of our son. I pray that I can enjoy every day God gives us, especially in relation to Eli. We never know what tomorrow may bring, whether we might end up being the parents of the sweet little child undergoing chemo or staying for months in the hospital. We pray for the strength to endure every tribulation, but we also pray for the wisdom to truly rejoice in every "normal" day.

Here are a few things I was especially thankful for during our stay in the hospital...
-Calls and visits from friends and family. Your support meant the world to us! In particular, I was so thankful for Sarah packing up her kids and coming all the way to the hospital just to bring me a cup of good coffee. You are precious to me, Sarah.
-Eli's calm, laid-back temperment. As I listened to other babies wailing somewhere down the hall from us, I was so grateful that Eli has a mellow personality that renders him pretty much unphased by whatever is going on around him. Unless the nurses were messing with him, he was as pleasant and easy-going as can be.
-Eric. He stayed at the hospital every single night with me just so I wouldn't have to be alone. He slept on the hard tile floor so that I could have the couch. He got up at 4am to make it to work on time and came right back to the hospital after he got off. He fed the baby and took care of him as much as he could so that I could rest, and he brought me anything I needed whenever I needed it.
-Eli's smiles! Eli had no idea he was in the hospital. He as as happy as ever, smiling away at the doctors and nurses and starting to perfect his little laugh. My parents bought him this big frog balloon, and he would just lie there and talk to it for hours. He brought so much joy to us just by watching him and listening to him.
-Excellent medical care. You can't beat the team of doctor's and nurses at Children's. They kept us well-informed at all times, and we never felt like we were just waiting around to see a doctor. I can't praise this hospital enough.

I am so thankful to be home now. Eli is sleeping soundly right now, and I am enjoying just doing laundry and cleaning up the house. Being in the hospital made me realize how I just need to be thankful for "mundane" days like these. And I am.


The White House said...

He is precious! I hear you on the thankfulness post. I was a little shocked when I found out I was pregnant with my fourth in four years- slightly overwhelming. Since then I have had two dear friends miscarry and one friend who is facing a forced abortion. It is so devastating. I am glad that the Lord gave you a thankful heart, and I am glad that He did the same for me...