The hospital is giving Angel a time to be a baby. They seem to understand that there needs to be a break from treatment and its accompanying discomforts for the children to just be children.
So Angel is in Pamela’s personal room. She has a crib, a jump up seat (thanks to her church friends), a little table that holds her while she tries to eat solids, and a stroller that takes her around the hospital and around the block for walks. Pamela is delighted and having fun being a “normal” mom.
However this stay in Pamela’s room is conditional on Angel eating and gaining weight. Because Angel’s mouth was so deformed by the fire, she can’t seem to suck from a bottle. Miraculously she can nurse which means Pamela is her sole source of food. The stay in the room will continue only if Angel is gaining weight. Otherwise she has to go back to ICU for a feeding tube to be inserted. Hopefully her ability to take solids will increase and eventually give her enough nutrients to grow bigger and bigger.
Pamela is also taking classes offered by the hospital. She has had a class on breast feeding (and commented that she didn’t know that it was so complicated!), a class on CPR, and now is taking a class on playing with your child. That’s her favorite and she is having as much fun as Angel.
Medically there is another surgery scheduled sometime next week. Again the skin is not completely covering her head and the left eyelid is not functioning correctly (it’s drooping). So the surgeon has more work to do on those two areas. They have begun work on her mouth but they want to go slow with that so as not to disrupt her eating. Ears and nose are yet to be addressed.
In that this is a slow process, the hospital has asked that we get the visa extended. It is currently a 6 month visa and ends February 15th. I will attempt, with the hospital’s help, to request another 6 months from the US Embassy.
I recently heard someone say that “a mother is only as happy as her children are”. Certainly I can see that lived out in Pamela. Nothing delights Pamela more than Angel’s laughter and talking noises and her excitement at the normal things of life. Thank you for giving this child those moments.