Monday, February 21, 2011

February, oh, February

Oh, Februrary 2011.  I will not soon forget you. 

This has been a crazy, unforgettable month and, I must admit, I am very excited to wrap it all up and turn the page to a new month.

I don't want to complain in this post.  There have been so many blessings and graces that have accompanied the challenges of this month and I am truly grateful for it all.  However, this month has been so eventful, such an opportunity for growth for Dan and I, that it is impossible not to document it with a blog post. 

Peter started off the month with a mysterious fever.  He had no other symptoms, so it didn't seem worrisome at first.  But when his fever climbed to 102...103...104.4 degrees...we started to worry.  After a little over 24 hours of high fevers and several very short febrile seizures, we reached a point where we did not feel like we could safely monitor Peter at home and took an ambulance ride off base to a downtown Turkish hospital. 

We ended up staying three nights in the hospital with Peter so he could be monitored.  The hospital's pediatrition was puzzled by the mysterious fever because Peter had no other symptoms and his white blood cell count was normal (indicating that he did not have an infection).  On the third day, Peter's fever disappeared and he developed a rash all over his torso and face.  The rash was the clue we were waiting for to diagnose Peter.  Peter ended up having Roseola (or some virus similar to it).  The rash cleared up within a couple of days and our little man has recovered 110 percent!  Praise God! 

It was very difficult to be so far away from home, so far away from American hospitals, and so far away from family when Peter was so sick.  However, I felt God's presence with us in such an unbelievably real way- both through the grace He granted us to persevere and through the support of some of the most incredible friends I have ever known. 

I have to share with you some of the amazing blessings received during this time:

*One of our dear friends, Tina, is fluent in Turkish.  After getting a frantic phone call at 8:30 pm, she rushed to our house within minutes and followed the ambulance to the Emergency Room to be our friend, support, and translator.  She has five children of her own, but offered to stay as long as we needed her.  She dug through the seats in her minivan and found lots of fun toys to keep Peter entertained, as well as a Bible for Dan and I.  She came back to the hospital the next two days (once with her daughter, and once with her husband) bringing food, more toys, and books(*This is an amazing sacrifice!  The drive to the hospital takes about 30 minutes in stressful, crazy traffic.  It is not easy.)  They read to Peter while Dan and I ate a little hospital food and relaxed.  When we returned home from the hospital, we found a Welcome Home sign and balloons on our door from their family.  They brought us a delicious dinner that evening. 

*Another very good friend, Linda, also just happens to be Peter's peditatrition on base.  We are so blessed!  She has done so much for us!  When Peter first got sick, she advised me on the phone at 2:00 am, made a house call the next day, and phoned the ambulance for us.  The following day, she drove all the way to the hospital with her husband, Shane, to visit us, check up on Peter, and speak with the Turkish doctor about his blood tests.

*Our wonderful friends, Wendi, John, Sarah and Ryan drove all the way to the hospital bringing toys and a portable dvd player for Peter (Peter was attached to an IV for 3 days, so anything to entertain him was hugely appreciated! Another generous friend, Angelica, sent a box of fun toys for Peter!).  They also brought magazines, snacks and pizza for Dan and I!  It was so good to see our friends!  None of the nurses spoke any English and the television was in Turkish so it was wonderful to have conversations with familiar faces.  It rejuvenated us so much! 

*When we got home, we received many meals, phone calls, prayers and gifts from our dear friends.  It was such an amazing experience of God's love!  We are so blessed!

*Our families back home- I know it was very difficult for them because we could not contact them from the hospital and they had very little information.  But we felt their love and prayers so much (and all of the prayers from our wonderful friends in the States)!  It's what kept us going.

In Peter's hospital bed with his IV.  It must've been around 11 pm and we had just done blood tests in the ER.
 I'm not sure why we're smiling so big!  I guess we're just relieved he's okay! : )
 *And last but not least- PETER!  I can't brag enough about how good he was through it all!  Other than during the sponge bath, blood draw, and insertion of the IV in the ER, Peter did not cry at all the entire time!  He was so tough!  He watched Turkish cartoons and read books in bed, walked the hallway with his IV following him, and sat on the couch in our room looking out the big window at the buses and trucks driving on the busy street.  I am so blessed to be his mom!

Our little sweetie taking a big nap.

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