Saturday, January 11, 2014

Ignorance is Bliss?

Hazel had an appointment with a cardiologist earlier this week.

I figured that it was just a follow up appointment due to the fact that Hazel is a preemie.  I had kind of wondered why they sent her home with a heart rate and breathing monitor since as far as I had been told, she had never had any apnea nor brady episodes (where her breathing and/or heart rate slow to unsafe tempos).  Her biggest issue had always been that her blood would desaturate due to her chronic lung disease, but they didn't send her home with a pulse/ox monitor.  When I asked about it, I was told by the doctor that I was to watch her heart rate and breathing rate and if those slowed and if she showed clinical signs of desaturation, then I would know that she was desatting and take action.

But the clinical signs of desaturation are turning blue and what not,which doesn't happen until the condition is pretty bad, so I was not too confident in the process of monitoring what I understood to be her biggest problem.

I talked to my pediatrician, and she agreed that we should watch her saturation levels more closely and put Hazel on a pulse/ox monitor, too.  That also means that we can take her off the oxygen for a few hours a day to give her lungs a workout breathing on their own while still keeping a close eye on her O2 levels but that's another story.

Anyway, while I was a bit perplexed about the cardiologist appointment, as I said, I just assumed it was routine follow-up.

So, imagine my surprise when the doctor, whom I had never met before, asked me how Hazel was doing with her 'condition'.

Me:  Ummm....what condition?

Then came the question:

Do you know why you are here?

Me:  But now I get the feeling that I should know why I am here...would you like to tell me why I am here with Hazel?

Doc:  Oh, so they didn't tell you?

Me:  No.  Tell me what?

Doc:  Oh.  Well.  Hazel has a hole between the two ventricles in her heart.  It's just a small one....they never told you about this?

Me:  No.

Doc, looking at the charts:  Well they did the echo on December 20th...oh, that's the day you got discharged!  Anyway, they found a small hole.  Let's just take a look, shall we?  I will explain after we see what's going on...

Me:  Why yes, I do believe we shall take a look, and then perhaps offer an explanation, oh, so many explanations...

Doc, peering at the screen where my sweet baby Hazel's heart twitches and pulses as she squirms in my arms in protest of the slimy goop smeared across her chest:'s another angle...let me see...Well!  Good!  It looks like it's all closed up.  No explanation needed!  Whew.

And I sat there, still thinking that there really did need to be some sort of why was I not informed of the hole in my daughter's heart...

But as I clutched my tiny girl to my heart, wiping her chest of goop and her face of tears, buttoning her PJ's and straightening her tubes and attaching her leads...

I realized that what I must say is

Thank you, God.

Thank you for healing her heart.

And even though I was a bit put off and frustrated by yet another example of the lack of communication, I also sigh over my baby girl and say

Thank you, God.  Thank you for hiding this from me.  It was not life threatening, and there was nothing that I could do about it, and so I guess, in your infinite wisdom, you knew that this would be taken care of, and I just didn't need to know about it.

And in that ignorance, instead of worrying and stressing, I was able to sit and hold my baby, heart to heart, as she healed in ways that I will never need to understand, and together, we could just


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