Friday, January 6, 2012

Just Breathe II: Phil's Turn

(Here's the first "Just Breathe," about Thom.)

When I put Philip to bed that night, he seemed a happy and playful two-year old. At midnight, he woke up with a high fever; he was very croupy and struggling to breathe.  The vaporizer didn't seem to help, and because of the labored breathing, Larry and I decided to take Philip to the hospital emergency room.

Awakening in the night with a fever and not being able to breathe properly is scary for anyone, but especially so for a two-year old.  Larry and I were seasoned parents, as Philip was our sixth child, and we had dealt with bronchitis, pneumonia, esophagitis, and all kinds of respiratory illnesses.  We were concerned for this little guy because he was pulling so hard for his breath.  

When Phil was examined by the ER doctor, he screamed in terror. I don't like emergency rooms myself, so I couldn't blame him for putting up a fuss.  The doctor said he wanted an x-ray of his lungs to rule out pneumonia, and he wanted it done right away.

I felt so badly for Phil; he was so afraid, and now he'd have to go into a very dark place with a huge x-ray machine placed over him.  As we stood in the hall waiting to be called into x-ray, Larry and I prayed that God would set his Angels in charge round about Phil and give him peace. I was allowed into the room with Phil and outfitted with a lead apron. The x-ray technician instructed me to lay him down on the steel table and hold him while she adjusted the machine. The room was quite dark, although there was a little light. I am sure Philip was pretty tired out from all the crying he had done, so he laid still while the technician arranged the plates and positioned the machine. Now I was told to move away from him so the x-rays could be taken. 

I looked at Phil, and he began to smile and he seemed to be looking around the top of the walls.  "Look, Mom," he said, "see the lights. Look at them, Mom!  Aren't they pretty?" He said that the lights moved around the room.  I saw no lights. Was this the work of the fever? I don't know. 

What I do know is that a frightened little boy was smiling and peaceful during a procedure his parents thought would greatly add to his fear. Did God hear our prayer for Phil that night? You bet! Did He send His Angels as we asked?  I'm sure He did. Is that what Philip saw? I don't know, but I like to think he did.

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