A Letter to Maisy: Pneumonia


Dear Maisy,

Today I took you to the doctor.  It was day three of a high fever so it was time.  I expected a routine visit.  We walk in, they check your vitals, and tell me it’s a simple cough/cold that your little body would take care of on its own.  Instead, you get examined, reexamined, reexamined again, then x-rayed.  You sit and listen through it all, turning this way and that, lifting your arms and standing as requested, until we get to the x-ray room.  We take off your dress and your necklace and put a hospital gown on you.  It’s adult sized so you’re entirely lost in the garment.  You smile because we all chuckle at your cuteness.  But then you start to get nervous when they put you on a goofy chair and start strapping you in with x-ray protectant stuff.  Yet you make it through the first picture with only a minor whimper.  When they ask you to do it again and turn you away from me to take a picture of your profile you can’t handle not being able to see me at all and start to cry soft, heart wrenching tears.  They take the second picture quickly so I can rush to your side and comfort you.

At the end of it all they say it’s influenza or the RSV infection and give me some care instructions and inform me that it’s dangerous enough that they want to keep a close eye on you.

On the drive home I’m feeling a little anxious as you and your sister sleep peacefully in the back seat.  I’m anxious for your safety and I’m anxious your sister might catch it too and then I would really be nervous.  She’s so tiny and so helpless and these things could hurt her even faster than they could hurt you.

As we pull into the driveway I get a call back from the doctor saying you actually have pneumonia.  I get an instantaneous sinking, sick feeling in the pit of my stomach.  I’ve been on the verge of tears the rest of the evening: so proud of how chipper and sweet you’ve been even in such a state of physical turmoil, fearful of where pneumonia might take you, and just so gosh darn thankful for the sweet presence and joy you bring to my life.  You’re my sweet little buddy and yet just my sweet little baby and it physically hurts me to see you hurt.  I wish I could take it for you.

I love you so much it hurts, my darling.  I am so proud of you.  I pray passionately that you heal quickly.

All my love,


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