Nothing can ever prepare you for raising a sick child. Ever.
He was born and we were relieved that he seemed to be alright. He did have some problems in the beginning once we brought him home. He did not latch properly to my breast or a bottle. We spoke to his pediatrician and she just told us we should try a different bottle. I still tried hard every day though to breast feed and I would get some moments where he would get a good flow then start struggling to latch and to breathe while on my breast. So I ended up using playtex bottles and kept him fed. Everything else just seemed so normal. We were living day to day raising our two boys together.
I can’t remember the date or time that Cyrus first went blue and stopped breathing. I can’t even remember anything that happened that day. I know it was around 10 pm. We were getting our boys ready for bed. I was giving him a bath and that’s the very first episode we saw.
Everything is all blurred together. I know we got an ambulance and arrived at Pine Falls. The doctor and nurses there didn’t know what to do for him so they called Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg. During this time he had 2 major episodes and the first one he had I ran. I ran outside to my dad screaming and crying. He thought Cyrus had gone then. He told me to snap out of it. Kind of gave me shit I guess to make me come back to my senses. It wasn’t long after this that we took our first of many ambulance rides to Winnipeg.
That night we arrived there we were not prepared at all for what was all about to take place that long night. Needles, swabs, and a awful urine catheter. I stayed every test he took and I forced myself to watch even though I was scared shitless. Chris would go take his smoke breaks and leave when we would start arguing. I flat out refused to leave my baby. I know he was more traumatized then me by everything that was going on. I wanted to trade places with him every time he stopped breathing and every scream of pain he cried I begged God to let me.
By the early morning hours they were trying to get a I.V into his vein. They couldn’t get a good vein and Cyrus was in distress and so was I. I grabbed him away from the doctor and nurse and into my arms and held him so close to my body and almost ran. The nurse talked to me and she understood just right where I was in that moment. Her kind words and soft angelic voice that brought me back to reality will always be with me. She was there for me when I thought I had no one else. And she understood why I wanted to protect my baby but she also made me realize why we were there and why it had to be done. To find out what was happening to our baby.
No one can ever say that you can prepare for stuff like this. We were not prepared to leave Christopher with anyone. We were not prepared for Cyrus to be here like this. We were not at all physically, emotionally or spiritually prepared for any of this.
My heart was being torn into so many places. My mind was everywhere and no matter how much I tried to relax to calm down I couldn’t. I felt like I was on auto pilot and I know at the same time even though he didn’t say anything I knew Chris was falling apart just like me.
They were able to let Cyrus rest and moved him from the E.R. to the P.I.C.U. Family and Friends started coming to check on him and us. Offered support and prayers and asked what was wrong with Cyrus. We couldn’t tell them anything expect that they were episodes of him stopping breathing and that the Doctors and staff were running tests.
We saw so much specialists during the first hospital stay. We saw a oxygen specialist because when he would have these episodes his oxygen levels would drop right down to the 20’s. We saw Neurosurgery and Neurologists because they suspected it had something to do with his Achondroplasia. They did a MRI with him under sedation. Some swelling showed up on the left part of his brain but not enough for major surgery. It would be watched. They also thought it could be pinching in his neck where the spinal cord goes into the brain. Nothing was showing up. So what caused these apneic episodes? They didn’t know and had no choice but to send us home because he improved.
I can’t remember how much days there were this hospital visit. I know we left Christopher with my parents. Which was really hard on both Chris and I. I know it was not easy on him either. He was only 18 months old and still on the bottle. Still needed to feel daddy and mommy’s skin to fall asleep. He was still a baby to us and now he had some fast growing up to do. This is where I started to get depressed and slowly falling apart inside. He saw everything too when the first one happened. He saw us screaming and freaking out. He saw his brother like that and didn’t even understand what was going on. My big baby.
When we came home it was like everything would go back to normal. We started to be very cautious with our boy. I returned to work not long after and everything seemed like it was falling back into place. We thought our life had returned to normal and that all that was behind us was done with.
Then 2012 came and was hard. 2013 ended up being the hardest year of our lives.