Friday, January 12, 2007

Life, One Year Later

I know exactly where I was one year ago. I don't mean some kind of figurative bullshit, "Oh, I was so happy," or "it was such a tumultuous time in my life." I mean, very literally, I know exactly where I was one year ago tonight. I was in the Pediatric ICU at St. Mary's Hospital in downtown Richmond with my 8-week old baby. He had just been diagnosed with meningitis.

Blaker had taken him in during the night for a high fever while I stayed with Bellamy, and after blood tests, catheters, urine tests, and finally, a spinal tap on his tiny little body, he was diagnosed with meningitis. I knew nothing about meningitis except that it killed people. Doctors and nurses wore gowns, gloves, and face masks around him. Once he was admitted, there had to be at least one empty room between him and other patients on either side, according to hospital policy. This was bad stuff. Nobody could tell me if he would live--when I asked the nurses, they would rub my back and their eyes would tear.

Tonight, my baby--my tiny, sick little baby--is a huge, healthy, happy little boy. My Sutton is asleep upstairs in his crib, wearing his baseball pajamas, sucking his favorite purple pacifier. He has his Daddy's curly hair, and my eyes, nose and mouth. He is perfect.

Everything is perfect.