March 5th, 2009 my then 9 month old son was admitted into the hospital for cellulitis on his eyelid. The infection quickly became life threatening because as it turned out his tiny body did not produce the white blood cells to fight off the infection. After ruling out leukemia (that was a long night waiting for those test results) he was diagnosed with autoimmune neutropenia.
Since then he has cumulatively spent months in the hospital including birthdays and holidays. For a year my husband gave him injections at home of GCSF to force his bones to release the precious white blood cells. It made his little bones ache. He endured weekly blood draws and trips to the hospital if he had a fever over 100.4. We would have to put a mask on him for church services during the winter months (he never grew accustomed to that). Every fever could potentially be life threatening; his was an atypical case of the disease and one of the worst his hematologist had seen.
I’m happy to say that after 3 long and trying years my sweet little Jacob is all better! His counts were normal and I have just been beside myself today, going from laughing to crying and back again.
If you take anything away from this post I hope it’s this: If you know someone who is going through something like this with their child, give them extra love. They may look like they’re holding it together on the outside but on the inside they hurt… badly. Offer to watch their other kids or their pets while they’re in the hospital. Visit them, bring them a home cooked meal. Listen. Pray for them. Cry with them. Love them some more.