Thursday, June 19, 2008
Friday after Thanksgiving 07- Going home
I despise this picture because it makes me furious. This will be my venting page...so watch out. While in Cleveland a doctor from the floor saw your 2 bumps on the back of your head which were caused by your vacuum birth 17 days prior. She did not consult with us, the other doctors, our surgery team, our pediatrician, no one. She made a judgement call that was way out of line on her own, and called Children's Services on us from abuse. She thought that your dad and I were capable of abusing your little body, and claimed that we were to blame for the 2 small bumps on the back of your head. It was humiliating and degrading. Just after you had gone through your surgery, and I was focusing on your needs, I suddenly had to answer a battery of questions from a social worker and then Children's Services came from our home county to also question us. Brian and I were split apart for questioning and taken to different rooms. I wanted to be with YOU...not taken away from you to answer questions that made NO sense to me. It was horrible. A case was filed, and your dad and I were now being accused of the unthinkable...hurting you.
To access the situation, you were put through about every test imaginable. You had to undergo a CT scan, an eye exam to prove that you weren't shaken, a full body x-ray scan, bone scans, and a MRI. Remember....you had just been taken out of surgery a few hours prior to all this. We knew we were going to be "stuck" in Cleveland for awhile as we awaited the results of all the tests you were put through.
Meanwhile, back home, Children's Services was doing an investigation of our daughter's care. They went to my in laws home to see if Ellie was being properly taken care of and even asked her (a 3 year old) a battery of questions. I know, that they have to do their job, but us???? Are you kidding me? Our kids are our lives. This was degrading beyond belief.
We requested that we be present for all of Reid's medical tests during this week. We were involved in all but one test. This would be the day that I will NEVER forget. Your dad and I were in your room at ALL times. We went to the cafeteria to grab dinner after spending over 15 hours with you. We informed the nurses of where we were going and asked to be contacted if Reid was taken for his body scan test. While we were gone, you were taken for your test, and we were not contacted. So, when we came back to your room, we were informed that "we had just missed the nurses who came to get you for your bone scan." We were furious. We ran down to the basement floor where the test was being performed and heard your screams all the way down the hall. Since the test was in progress, we couldn't be there to comfort you at all. After an hour of listening to your screams, the technician and nurse came out with you. And I will NEVER forget your dad's face. He realized it first...then me. Your stitches had pulled out of one side of your lip while you were screaming. It wouldn't be long...and the other side would follow. Your surgery was a complete waste. What a feeling of absolute sickness I had. I just wanted to take you home and protect you. What a mess. I also realized that if I wasn't on top of your pain meds that nothing was getting done. I know that this was a holiday week, but it would be well over an hour past due for your meds, and I had to hunt down nurses to help you. I was just sick to my stomach to be there with you.
Thanksgiving day was spent watching your stitches fall out of both sides of your mouth one by one. Piece by piece. I was reminded that you are here and healthy, and for that I am thankful.
Your MRI was performed on Friday morning. All stitches are out now. They pulled throughout the night. Your surgeon did not come by to see you once. NOT ONCE. Yes, I know it was a holiday and all....but we hadn't seen him since the recovery room where he BRIEFLY showed his face. Otherwise, 1st year residents came to check on Reid. And I will quote what one said one early morning when we waited for our surgeon to show up (and he never did)...."Oh, this is what a cleft lip looks like." OK, he DID NOT just say that???? Yes, he did. And he is here to access MY son? I think not. At this point, I knew that we had to look elsewhere for our son's care. This would not do. Not ever.
Friday morning, you had your MRI and all results came back that afternoon. Guess what....ALL TESTS SHOW THAT YOUR BUMPS ON THE BACK OF YOUR HEAD WERE THE RESULT OF A VACUUM BIRTH!!!!! The abuse case was dropped, and the doctors were all in agreement that the traumatic birth that Reid went through caused the bumps. Nothing else. We never got an apology from Children's Services or from the doctor that "turned us in". We never saw or heard from her again except from her initial observation of Reid that first day.
We were discharged from Cleveland, and the picture above is what you looked like when we got home. I remember just crying over your car seat for all you had been put through that week. I apologized to you over and over again, and I prayed that you understood me. I vowed at that point that your dad and I would find somewhere else to take you for your care. I would not settle for the care that we received at the Clinic. The hunt was on.