Dear Mary Hazel,

Today started like any other Wednesday. We were all snuggled up in the bed. You just finished your morning nursing session and we enjoyed that window of quiet warmth before the day got off to its usual hectic start.

I had a long list of things to do today:

  1. Take Charlie and Poppy to soccer camp.
  2. Take you for your one-year well visit at the pediatrician’s office.
  3. Meet Dad at the shop to drop off my car.
  4. Eat lunch.
  5. Pick up Charlie and Poppy from soccer camp.
  6. Go to work.
  7. Pick up car.
  8. Meet Krista and her family for dinner downtown.

Instead, this is what happened:

  1. Took Charlie and Poppy to soccer camp.
  2. Took you for your one-year well visit at the pediatrician’s office…
This is where it gets fuzzy. I remember you being a happy baby scooting around the cold floor asking, “This? This?” and pointing to your toys. I remember the nurses saying how much they like your silly hair. I remember Dr. Greene giving you a routine exam. And then I remember the look of worry on her face and her serious tone. “Her spleen is enlarged and I am concerned,” she said. “What does that mean?” I asked. She didn’t reply right away and at that very moment, I knew it was bad news. I didn’t realize how bad, but bad.
We were sent across the hall for lab work. The doctor wanted to check your white blood cell count. After that, we were instructed to go straight to the hospital for an ultrasound. She wanted to measure your spleen. On the way to the hospital, she called and informed us that your white blood cell count was normal and that she was very relieved. And I was very relieved for a while, too. You were very good during that long abdominal ultrasound, but when you started squirming and fussing, I nursed you peacefully until the test was complete. I felt calm; you were happy. The technician left and said she would be back soon. Thirty minutes later, she had not returned. We played with blocks, the sink, and the door handle for quite a while. Daddy went down the hall to get DanDaddy from the waiting room. You and I went to the Pediatrics Waiting Room and you delighted in playing with the LeapFrog table. You were babbling and cooing when the technician walked in and handed me the phone.
“Mary Hazel has a tumor. It’s in her kidney. We need to admit her to the hospital right away.”
Shock, tears, shaking, numbness.
My baby has cancer? My baby has cancer. My baby has cancer!?
I vaguely remember holding on to Russell. I remember going to tell my father. I remember burying my head in the neck of my happy baby still smiling and innocent.
The rest of the words came all at once and I don’t think I heard any of them. All I know is that we are going to the hospital tomorrow morning and do not know when we will return. The standard response at this time is, “We just don’t have enough information to make predictions yet.”
We brought you home. I fed you your favorite soup. I gave you a long bath with extra bubbles. I rocked you for an hour and would not have let go if it weren’t for sweet Charlie and Poppy needing hugs, too.
I’m fairly certain that I’m still in shock, but I thought it important to let our loved ones know what is happening. We will use this blog to keep folks informed. I’m sure they understand how difficult all of this is for Mommy and Daddy and we appreciate their concern and kindness.
I’m going to sneak back into your room now and watch you take deep peaceful breaths while you rest easy tonight.
I love you to the moon and back.

21 thoughts on “Wednesday

  1. Erin, Russell, Mary and Dan–There are no words right now–only tears–and prayers. Many of them. Much love,

  2. Erin: We are praying for you and your family – please let us know if there is ANYTHING we can do to help.

  3. Erin – I only met you and your beautiful children a couple of weeks ago at a pool play date. My heart aches for you. You will be in my thoughts and prayers for strength, clarity, and peace. Please don’t hesitate to message me through Meetup if there is anything I can do to help ease this.

  4. Erin: We’re praying for you and your family. If there is ANYTHING we can do to help, please let us know

  5. Erin: We’re praying for you and your family. Please let us know if there is anything we can do to help.

  6. Erin – My thoughts & prayers are with you and your family. I can’t imagine what you’re going through, but I know the Lord will hold you in His embrace – comforting you, giving you hope & peace and loving each one of you.

  7. Dear Erin and Mary Hazel,
    I haven’t seen your mom in a very long time, but have enjoyed getting caught up with her and seeing your adorable pictures on facebook. Reading this today finds me in tears. I can’t help it. I can only imagine what your mommy is feeling, it breaks my heart. And you, you precious little thing, it just isn’t fair. And I want you to know that even though we’ve never met, my heart is full of love for you. You are a precious child of God and He loves you very much. I know that He is with you right now, and He is watching over you and your family. I will pray that the doctors take good good care of you, and I will pray for strength of mommy and daddy. Take care little one.
    Lots of love,
    Mary Margaret and my army of Greggs

  8. You don’t know me, but as a friend of John Fleisher, I was asked to pray for you. I had a friend who about 6 years ago, received a nearly identical diagnosis on their little one year old. He is healthy and cancer free today, and I share that as a simple encouragment and glimmer of hope for you in your beautiful yet somewhat shattered world… know that even those who don’t know you have hopeful prayers that they are sending upwards for you and your family. Blessings, dear Erin.
    -Kathleen Fairchild

  9. I love you baby bug…. I know that you are going to be ok. Jesus is watching over you. You have the best mommy and daddy in the world and the best possums to take care of you. I know that everything will be ok. Kisses and hugs to you from Nanny Jenny.

  10. You are in my thoughts and prayers; strength and peace for you and complete healing for your beautiful Mary Hazel.

  11. Hi Erin, dont know you , but work here at the plant, My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family, There is a special God for Children and Your little Angle will be just fine..

  12. Hey Erin & Russell,
    I just found out about Mary Hazel. I was out last week. I am so sorry you guys had to go through this. You’re in my thoughts and prayers. I’m so happy to hear the good news, however and that everyone is home.

  13. Pingback: Project Kindness (Day 29) | Two Possums and a Bug

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