What happened on Saturday

A sleepy Saturday afternoon

Regan is running a fever and feeling sick, but his morning Tylenol seemed to help

He lies sleeping on the couch

I sit in the living room, typing about taking things for granted

He wakes to ask for a drink, and I bring it to him gladly

He is tired, but lucid

He drifts back to sleep again

A sleepy Saturday afternoon

And the minutes tick down, down, down

Suddenly my son starts thrashing

His body is jerking, convulsing

I rush to him

Jesus, what is happening?

I lift him

I call to him

I cry out for Aarick to run get Ryan

Regan, you have to stay with me!

Ryan comes running and the seizure goes on, the jerking and the horrid facial twitching

He picks Regan up

Is he breathing?

Ryan, he’s turning blue

My first 911 call and she asks for my address

I don’t think my son is breathing; what can I do?

Blood in his mouth from a bit tongue

We sponge him with coldness, we speak to the other children

On and on—three minutes? More?

It is like looking violent death in the face. Jesus, I think we’re going to lose him

Then a shift, his breathing changes and grows ragged, deeper now, though filled with fluid

His convulsions grow less and he lies there trembling

Pale, silent, completely unresponsive.

Six minutes after I dial the number, here is Amber at our door, an EMT

What is his name?

Regan, can you hear me, buddy?

She cuts off his shirt

She asks for more cold water, sponges him, rubs him, talks clear and calm to him

Someone else at the door—our friend Amos, come to take Aarick and Kelly

Amber works and works and suddenly he moves and begins to cry

Ohhh, that’s good. That’s very good.

You’re gonna be okay, buddy.

Ambulance drivers at the door.

We strap him in and I ride in the back, Ryan follows

My son is there but not there, does not flinch when they prick his finger

In the ER there are personnel, questions, lights, cool air.

His temperature is 102.9—a freak fever-induced seizure, but we’ll run tests to be sure.

He sleeps.

It takes long for his eyes to move from staring-unresponsive to awake enough to look at us, follow us around the room

Will he ever be the same?

Longer still, a couple hours, before he will squeeze my hand, before the first spark of understanding lights his eyes, before he whispers his first word and then says a sentence

My son, my son

Admitted to Pediatrics for the night and we spend our weekend in the hospital

Some kids’ bodies are more sensitive to sickness, says the doctor.

I want to stay close to him

He is the one who will age us

I don’t know how to raise him but I want to, please Jesus

I love him

On Sunday, he is back to his impish grin, ornery tricks (miracle!) and we come home

Home! Home!

I ponder these things in my heart.

Regan never naps on the couch. Ever. How would the story be different if he’d been upstairs?

How did Amber arrive so quickly?

How can the world fracture in a single moment, and in 24 hours be spinning normally again?

I am exhausted.

Jesus, thank you thank you thank you for healing my son…

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11 years ago

We are sooooooo glad he is okay. Couldn’t imagine what you went through but to God be the Glory! Love you guys.

Mom Coblentz
11 years ago

I’m tearing up. This was hard to read but i was glued to the screen. I’m sooo sorry…I’m sooo glad it’s over…and I’m sooo glad the story ended the way it did!!!!

Marlene Stoltzfus
11 years ago

Wow, scary stuff. You captured the urgency of the experience in your writing. I’m so glad that all is well! And I hope you’ve had time and space to recover, too.

Ruth Byler
11 years ago

So-so scary! That happened to Alana when she was 1 1/2 and though I am not sure it lasted that long but it was long enough to give us a good scare! Ever since than I have been paranoid of fevers! So glad he is ok!

11 years ago

Simply terrifying. Thanks for sharing the story. I am rejoicing ( 178%+ ) with you about the conclusion of this story.

11 years ago

This made me cry.
I am rejoicing with the healing and wholeness you all are experiencing…and thanking Jesus for being the Great Physician! Amber sounds like the ideal EMT. 🙂

11 years ago

So many tears come to the surface reading this. My heart’s cry… “I don’t know how to raise him but I want to, please Jesus” and now God has given you a gift for the second time– *Regan*.

Irene Bontrager
11 years ago

Life is full of uncertainties. Nothing is sure. Who does a person cling to in moments of crisis? God. I am delighted Regan experienced a miraculous healing. Jesus, give Shari strength and renew her body. Thanks for sharing the story.

11 years ago

Oh my dear friend . . . how my heart goes out to you. Please, feel free to get in touch with me again someday. We have much in common with our sons.

LaDonna Nice
11 years ago

You painted the scene so beautifully with this post. I could feel your desperation, and mother’s heart. It really brought tears to my eyes. So glad he’s better, we were praying for him.

11 years ago

My heart is pounding hard. I’d imagined your experience was dreadful, but didn’t realize how bad it was. I’m so thankful he was asleep on the couch! Regan, God’s keeping you alive cause He has great plans for you, in this moment and in the future.

11 years ago

This is a story that no mother would want to have to write. I’m so, so glad that your story ended the way it did and that Regan is okay!

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