Before Kimani I lived a life with no regrets. It’s not like I hadn’t made big mistakes, hurt people and hurt myself, but I never yearned to go back and change anything.
Now I ache, I wish, I wonder... if only. If only I could go back and say no. No feeding tube that would eventually lead to bacterial meningitis. No CV line in her thigh, a procedure that would go awry and lead to an intense 106 degree fever and a heart rate off the charts.
Because one of those two evils stole my child.
Cortical vision impairment... the eyes can see but the brain cannot interpret... the processor is broken. Legally blind. I try to imagine her world... what it is like to see but sometimes not know what you are seeing.
Sometimes when she wakes up and is still in her crib, I know she doesn’t know I am there. She is looking right through me. I say good morning and whisper her name. She looks for me but her eyes do not find mine. I reach down and stroke her cheek and she wraps her little hands around my wrist. Ah, now she knows where I am.
But there is more to it than that. How much more? I don’t know and neither does Google. I have searched for answers, for others like us but I find nothing, no one. The results are terrifying and vast... brain damage, mental retardation... but no specifics, no list to check her off against, nothing to compare her to.
I can never go backwards, only forward, only onward. Perhaps to a pediatric neurologist who can tell me what I need to know. Maybe a fancy machine can see inside her head and tell me what is best for her.
And as for me and God, well I don’t know. I doubt he is going to tell me why, because after all, I already know why... shit happens. Maybe he will ease my regret and bring me peace, or maybe he will perform an old-fashioned miracle and heal her.
Or maybe nothing, maybe I’ll feel this way forever.
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