Saturday, April 16, 2011

This Past Week

I noticed Maggie doing something strange before her two week check up. Strange even for newborns. I asked her doctor and she said to keep an eye on it but it's probably nothing.

I asked the doctor because I first Googled the symptom and was given horrible, terrible ideas. But with the doctor's permission, I brushed them off as best I could. Until it started happening again, only worse.

In my head, I begged her to stop. She was putting us in a difficult position. Either I was being dramatic and crazy or she was about to get a horrible prognosis. I brought it up with her doctor, asking if it was normal. The way she said "no...oh no" made me start to cry.

When Cork got home from work and I told him what I saw, what the doctor said, when the neurologists' appointments were, and what the internet said (basically the majority of babies who have these seizures stop developing and lose any developments they have made. The more I read, the more I reconsidered my fears of a Down Syndrome diagnosis after the 12 week ultrasound. I read about babies who basically stayed babies for the rest of their lives.)

And Cork said the most amazing thing (like always). As I choked up, finishing the explanation, Cork hugged me. And he said, "No matter what happens, we're not going to love her any less, right?" And of course he was right. And I realized, you have kids for a lot of reasons. But the main reason is to love them. And to help them be everything they can be. Even if "everything they can be" just means sitting up or holding their head up. And maybe Maggie and Hannah wouldn't be BFFs in quite the way I imagined. And a million other things I imagined wouldn't be. But the most important things would still be there. We'd still love her. And she would still be the best little Maggie she could be.

While we were waiting for the EEG my doctor scheduled for 48 long hours away, I searched every last inch of the internet for better answers. And oh sweet Jesus I found one. And I clung to it dearly for the full five day wait until the neurologist called us back with her test results. I Googled one of the differential diagnoses for Infantile Spasms (baby seizures), and saw a YouTube of a kid doing EXACTLY what Maggie was doing (which looked way too much like what the YouTube videos of babies with this seizure disorder were doing.) And this baby was doing it because she had severe infant reflux. REFLUX. Which she'd already been diagnosed with. I have never wanted to hug the internet so badly.

Maggie's brain waves were normal. I cried some more when the nurse gave me the news and then gave Maggie lots of hugs and kisses. The five-day wait wasn't as torturous as it would have been if I didn't have such an incredible husband and such amazing Googling skills. And it was an important lesson. Every word Hannah says, every skill she has mastered, I felt a renewed sense of gratitude for. And for both of my girls, I got a big reminder about how fragile life is and how lucky we are.


  1. Aw I'm glad she's okay! My friend's sister brought her son to the ER when he was a baby because they thought he was having seizures and then the ER realized it was reflux (but not right away!).

  2. OMG, I had no idea you went through this! How scary!! So glad it's just reflux... although "just reflux" is it's own nightmare. It's a lot less permanent than brain issues are though!