In retrospect, I wish I would’ve had enough nerve to slap her across the face. Hurt her for telling my husband and me that our son is dying with such nonchaleontless, no empathy in her voice, not any sign of remorse in her eyes. She stated this as easily as she could’ve been saying, “I’m sorry, we are out of the tacos, could I interest you in our soup de jour?”
I don’t even remember her name. She is simply a face to me now. A doctor that knew nothing of our lives, just what was written on paper. A day I will never forget is the day she told me my son was going to die. And not just die, but go deaf, blind, have seizures and have extreme nerve pain and then die. He was going to die from respiratory failure. He is going to suffocate to death.
Her and her colleague came into William’s waiting room with the MRI results. They brought it up on the screen and was showing us areas of our son’s brain that had white spots where there shouldn’t be. I have a reoccurring nightmare that I have had since I was a child. Its where I can’t breathe, and I try to run down the hall to my parents’ bedroom but I can’t move. I try and scream but no one can hear me. This day was much much worse than that. “So,” I ask, “What does the white matter mean?” She states a whole bunch of words I cannot recall, but one I do recall is “damage”. I’m thinking, damage? How? He was born completely healthly, has never run a fever, just smiled and cooed at me a moment ago, and now you’re telling me there is damage? How? What DOES IT MEAN?
Then she says, “You’ll need to sit down.” My mind shut off. It went numb from that point on. I knew whatever it was she didn’t want me face planting on the floor, then they’d have another situation to deal with. “You’re son is going to die. Make plans now because he will go blind and deaf soon. He will have a seizure soon, too.” After screaming and yelling things I don’t recall, I remember the feeling of emptiness and asking, “How long?” She states, "He will die by his 2nd birthday, but maybe sooner."