Just Trying to Enjoy Christmas

All month-long I’ve been trying to “Just enjoy Christmas.” To be honest December has been a hard month for us. Little boy had three trips to the ER, one visit to Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, and tomorrow we are going to see yet another specialist in New York.

I cannot believe it’s come to this. The last two weeks especially have been very heavy and stressful as we learned Nathan’s condition is far worse than we expected. Despite having great care locally, and the fact that I nearly vowed to never travel far for a different doctor, we are boarding a plane to NYC early tomorrow morning.

The brief back story is:

We’ve been suspicious Nathan’s bladder and kidney abnormalities are causing his ongoing abdominal pains. So we decided to take him to see another urologist at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston for a second opinion. That urologist told us that we need to be way more aggressive with the care of his kidneys. He told us that we need to seriously consider taking out his right kidney (the atrophic one which isn’t doing virtually any work) and that he needed surgery to repair the one on the left. I was shocked, yet not shocked all at the same time. And in some ways it was affirming to have my intuitions confirmed that yes, something is wrong.

However, it felt like we swung from being extremely conservative to being über aggressive. So we decided to get a second opinion, for our second opinion on the recommendation of a friend. This dear friend lives in town yet takes her little boy to see a urologist in NY.

So I collected every single ultrasound, VCUG, every test and report and emailed them to this doctor she recommended, Dr. Alam. He contacted me the very next day saying he was concerned about my son’s condition and wouldn’t want this to go much longer. He also said don’t take the kidney out…yet! He is the first doctor I’ve talked to who agrees that this intermittent pain is directly related to what’s going on in his very complicated urologicial system.

We now have three very different opinions, but crazy as it sounds, we are taking this opportunity to see Dr Alam in NY because well…we’re going on faith. It feels very hasty for me and my planned personality but it’s clearly the next step for us. And because I feel like I need to justify our decision in some way: he is well sought for complicated urological conditions and my selfless parents in town to help out with the big kid for three days. But really we’re going on faith.

So I really did try my best to enjoy Christmas, and hopefully my big kid didn’t notice how hard it’s been around here. I’m hoping that 2016 we will be able to turn a corner and get Nathan feeling better and all of us enjoying, not just Christmas, but everyday life a little more.


I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23 I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; 24 but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body. 25 Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that through my being with you again your boasting in Christ Jesus will abound on account of me.” – Philippians 1: 20-26

My book, Beauty in Broken Dreams: A Hopeful Handbook for the Early Years as a Special Needs Parent, is now available on Amazon!

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#Christmas #kidneys #NYC #urology

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