Tiara made it through the winter and spring with a few more pneumonia’s but it was during the summer that Trinity became the patient. Tabitha was 11 and playing club soccer all over the universe or what felt like all over the globe since I was dragging Tiara and Trinity with me to all the games while Lou worked all weekend. The games were usually inland and the weather was sweltering, oh how, I hate the heat. Tiara would sit under an umbrella while I doused her with water trying to keep her cool and Trinity walked around talking to all the other parents wearing her “Belle” costume.
Trinity was 2 and in the phase where she insisted on wearing a costume type dress every where we went. If it wasn’t “Belle” it was a knee length tutu or a Snow White outfit. She was always socializing and entertaining herself because sadly she had no other option as I was always looking after Tiara, who would run away at a moments notice. Unlike other two year old’s, Trinity never ran off, never walked into the street by herself, and always stayed right next to me without me asking.
One day during the end of summer, Tiara, Trinity and I were outside playing bubbles. That was Tiara’s obsession at the time and of course I was standing next to her monitoring the bubble situation while my independent 2 year old was doing whatever she wanted in the backyard. Actually she too was playing bubbles but on her own because Tiara would always dump out the bubble dish and Trinity would get mad. She couldn’t understand why her older sister was always wasting the bubbles by tossing the dish over, so she liked to play on her own. All of the sudden I heard Trinity scream. As I turned around, she is running towards me with blood all over her foot. I quickly ran to her and scooped her up into my arms. I could see she had sliced her foot really bad. Apparently she stepped on the bubble dish which was old and brittle from the sun, and it broke, cutting her foot really deep. I knew she needed stitches and wasn’t quite sure how to handle the matter since I was home alone with the 3 girls. I called my mom and dad and luckily they were home and agreed to watch the girls so I could take Trinity to the walk in clinic.
Once the doctor saw her foot, she agreed that yes , Trinity needed at least 5 stitches in her foot. Back then, Trinity was the toughest kid you have ever seen. The doctor gave her a shot to numb the area and she didn’t even flinch. She stitched her up and we were on our way home within an hour. Not a tear, a cry or a flinch. Now that she is 10 things have changed a bit as she is very dramatic but at 2 she was unflappable. I felt really horrible and like a loser mom because my baby was only 2 years old and had to get stitches, none of my girls had ever needed stitches.
A week later, she complained about a spot on her hip. It looked like a mosquito bite that had started to get infected. I put some Neosporin on it, Lou’s cure for every ailment in the world, but it kept paining her and seemed to be getting bigger. It had this really large white pussy head that I attempted to pick. It hurt so much when I squeezed it she started to cry, but it seemed like I needed to get the puss out, so I kept at it whenever she would let me. By the way, I am a notorious picker. I love to pick pimples, belly buttons, clean ears, anything gross like that is totally up my alley. After a few days I finally took her to the doctor because it was getting bigger and more filled with puss everyday and my home remedies weren’t working.
Once her pediatrician saw it, he gave me this funny look and asked where or what she had been doing lately. I told him about the stitches on her foot and he seemed suspicious of something. He pulled out a pair of gloves, which was really weird, since they never wore gloves at the pediatrician’s. He squeezed the sore and Trinity flew through the roof in pain as all this gross brown puss squirted out. He then took a sample of the stuff for the lab and cut open the area with a scalpel to clean more out. He circled the area and told me to squeeze it twice a day to clean it out and if it got bigger to call him right away. He suspected she had methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus or rather MERSA, the dreaded staph infection. He thought she had picked it up at the walk in clinic when I took her there for the stitches in her foot. Like Tiara, she had eczema all over and the open sores in her skin made her more susceptible to picking up the infection. He told me it was highly contagious and to be super careful about washing our hands and to keep the wound covered at all times to protect ourselves, especially Tiara. He prescribed her the only antibiotic that isn’t resistant to the infection and we went home.
He wanted to see us back in two days and when we returned he confirmed it was a Mersa infection and he was concerned “she may need to have more of the the area cleaned out.” I had no idea what he was talking about and didn’t realize he meant surgery. He said he would call an expert at CHOC and get back to me later in the day. Ok, off we went. My Mom offered to take Trinity to Fashion Island for pizza and a train ride for a treat while I took Tiara to speech, so we went our separate ways.
While at speech, the doctor called and said I needed to bring Trinity to CHOC by 3:00pm for a 5:00 pm surgery. What? Surgery on my baby, today? I then explained she was out to lunch with my Mom and once again I was in trouble. “Out to lunch, she can’t eat, she needs to be sedated for the surgery!” I felt like one of those parents that live with their heads in the clouds, totally in denial. Did I miss all this information during the appointment that morning or did he fail to give it to me? I am still not sure, but I am usually pretty on top of medical matters so I was confused as to how I screwed this whole thing up and was totally clueless as to the severity of the situation. He then said, “the surgery is scheduled for today, just don’t let her eat anymore and see what the anesthesiologist says when you get there.” Ok, I guess I better figure out what to do with Tiara and Tabitha and get my butt up to CHOC.
I called my Mom and explained the situation and we decided to meet back at the house and she would take the other two kids. Once we got to the hospital, the anesthesiologist read me the riot act and postponed the surgery until the next day but they said we had to stay in the hospital until the surgery the next morning. Oh my, I was so not ready for that. I can do Tiara in the hospital, but Trinity,that was all new to me, and I didn’t like it a bit.
He then explained that the infection could be deadly and she needed to be put under anesthesia and have the area cut out around the infection to make sure it was all gone. Oh great, glad I didn’t know the severity of the situation before or I wouldn’t have slept for days.
Trinity made it through the surgery the next day without a hitch and the surgeon was really impressed with her bravery. Once again, she didn’t cry, fuss, or scream. Me, on the other hand, I was traumatized and wondering what God’s plan was for me. I knew how to deal with Tiara’s medical problems, but then he gave me this surprise child after a vasectomy and then gave her a deadly infection. Really, I hope this was a fluke because I can tell you I knew I couldn’t deal with another medically challenged kid and this incident was just a little too much for Lou and I.