Friday, February 19, 2010

Too much

So I've been wondering...have I gone too far with my son? I look at him right this minute and just say that's absurd. He's SO happy, he's SO healthy! How can you doubt yourself Karen? Well, pretty easily actually. I am a mom, and mom's always wonder if they have done the best for their children in every regard. And at the moment...I'm wondering if I've done too much.

Yeah, after my impromptu nap last night at 8pm...I was wide awake by 11pm to watch Private Practice (the spin off of Grey's Anantomy). I'm a junkie to medical drama where adults act like teenagers getting mixed up in each other's love lives. It's a flaw I've learned to embrace. :) But on that episode there were parents of a tiny 25 weeker with lots of complications. The parents were holding out on hope that their child would get to live a normal life one day if they just kept fighting. The doctors didn't agree. They were suggesting medical assistance be stopped. In the end, it was. The parents finally got to hold their baby free of wires and just let him feel love.

Now no way can I compare my son's medical journey to one so severe as what this little guy was facing...but the similarities of what the doctors said kind of brought it home. I was told to terminate before he was even born and I resisted and fought for him. I was told by FAMILY and FRIENDS that said too much was being done...why don't I just stop once he was born. I've had to push the medical community, transplant team and home healthcare personnel so they would realize Matthew was a person. Not a number, a statistic or a nameless being. He was MY boy and I wanted the best for him.

I also wanted the best for me. I wanted Matthew here. I kept reasoning that if God wanted to take him...he'd do it anyway. During surgery, during sepsis or even while driving over ice to get him to hemodialysis. He's still here. I think he has a big purpose on this earth...I can't wait to find out what it is. But also, I wonder if my selfishness is what has kept him going. Did I "taint" his outcome due to my pushiness?

If I hadn't gone along with the interventions and fetal surgeries...Matthew wouldn't be here. There would be no "well, a miracle could happen". You can't grow a urethra if you don't have one. His lungs would not have formed, his heart would be misshapen and his body would have curled in over itself from lack of fluid and space to stretch out. Did I "play God" in advocating for my son? Did I push the medical community to keep him alive when according to their books, he should be dead? Who am I to put my son through 20 surgeries just so I can hear his giggles?

I'm his mom. I wouldn't change a thing. God gave us the tools of surgery, dialysis, and medicine to make things better. They work with God, because through Him all things are possible. My son is here. He shouldn't be. He's used up is "nine lives" and is on number 11 right now. God reaffirms that to me through people like Marie. Through donors everywhere, nurses, doctors, surgeons, pharmacists. God gave them their gifts for a reason. He gave me my son for a reason. I am grateful for both.

I am throwing away the receipt, no exchange necessary for Matthew. Thank you God for the perfect gift. :)

6 comments:

April said...

I believe that God is in control and he will let you know when enough is enough. Matthew has survived so much and if it wasn't God's will for him to live, then he would be in Heaven.

I too had fetal surgery on my son and was encouraged to terminate. I tried to fight for my son even after he was born and the NICU dr's told us how grim his prognosis was. But I kept fighting and knew that God would tell me when it was time. And he did by taking Adam to Heaven.

I think it is wonderful that you have fought for your son and gave him a chance to live!

Elizabeth said...

If not for daily prescription drugs and regular surgical procedures, I would slowly - day by day - be going blind. It is an absolutely horrifying thought...it feels like something is stalking me, and as long as I keep up with medications and procedures, then maybe I can hold the darkness at bay.

I find comfort in John chapter 9. Jesus is out for a walk and He and the disciples run into a man who had been blind since birth. The Pharisees, trying to trick Jesus, asked Him "Master, who sinned, this man or his parents that he should be born blind?" (blindness was considered the second most crippling illness, after leprosy, and the question reflected the ancient belief that God punished the sins of adults by causing their children to be born with challenges.)

But Jesus' answer stopped them short: "Neither. This man was born blind so that the glory of the Lord may be revealed in him." My cross is climbing up into a hospital bed every few years to get a scalpel stuck in my eyes. Why am I going down this path? Why are you? Why are you holding Matthew's hand as he goes down his? My answer is so that the glory of the Lord may be revealed in me; that I may fulfill whatever purpose God has for me. I pray for you, and for Matthew, that the product of your fighting is that the glory of the Lord be revealed in you, and in Matthew, too.

Brayden's Mom said...

Im glad you pushed to have Matthew. He is a wonderful kid (and I know that without every meeting him). You did the right thing but I know I dont have to tell you that. We have a semi-simalar story and we never thought once about terminating.

Our boys are special and they will always be special. I decided a erlong time ago that Brayden may never be "normal" by normal standards but he WILL be normal by our standards and that is all that matters.

Oh, by the way...it has taken me about 10 min to write that because my crazy son has been pushing buttons on my laptop.

Brayden's Mom said...

Im glad you pushed to have Matthew. He is a wonderful kid (and I know that without every meeting him). You did the right thing but I know I dont have to tell you that. We have a semi-simalar story and we never thought once about terminating.

Our boys are special and they will always be special. I decided a erlong time ago that Brayden may never be "normal" by normal standards but he WILL be normal by our standards and that is all that matters.

Oh, by the way...it has taken me about 10 min to write that because my crazy son has been pushing buttons on my laptop.

jessicalflores1@aol.com said...

I agree with Jenny, our sons will never be normal by most people's standards. And really, they aren't normal. They overcome in a day what most of us haven't overcome in a lifetime. By 2 these guys have seen more needles than 90% of people will see in their lifetimes. They aren't normal. They are extraordinary. And yet, even in the midst of all of their lives, they all seem to handle it with such grace, strength, and happiness. The statistics are so terrible that if God wanted to take them, he would have. Our boys were given moms that would fight for them for a reason. God picked us for them and I believe he did a great job. You are the perfect mom for Matthew and God knew that you would fight for him.

Jamie H said...

Thank you for that perspective! As a pediatric nurse I am often the one telling families to let go. Your line that Matthew is a person struck a cord with me. I struggle with the fact that as nurse I "play God" at times. I too however must believe that God will take someone when He is ready and not when we are ready to let go.

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