Sunday, February 12, 2012
For Kieran: A Prayer Request for Valentine's Week
Andrea’s voice on the phone is ragged, fluttering away from exhaustion. It’s exactly a week since her son Kieran was airlifted to the intensive care unit at Ottawa’s Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO). I drove up with her husband Mike in the dark of that first night, making conversation, keeping time, while Andrea flew with Kieran.
No parents could love more than these two. They would give anything and everything for their five year old son. The rare and overwhelming seizure disorder that has complicated their lives since his birth and repeatedly hospitalized him has done nothing but bring into focus their love for him, even as they usually celebrate his upbeat and brilliant personality.
Seeing them love him opens up a pathway for me, a sideways vision of God. Faced with their anxiety, I feel helpless, inconsequential, and yet totally open to a palpable presence that alone can surpass the enormity of their worry. I am reminded of all the parents in the bible who threw themselves before Christ, before God, for their sick children. Sometimes it’s the only thing we can do.
Andrea tells me that Kieran is doing a little better. He no longer has the breathing or feeding tube. But he’s not eating, and can’t seem to concentrate. After a week he’s still spiking inexplicable fevers. He’s so bruised, they can no longer find a vein for his IV. He cries and complains when he’s awake, not his usual funny happy self. She hasn’t really slept in days. They don't have any answers. And she doesn’t know how much longer she can go on.
But she will go on. Whatever it takes, for however long it takes, she and Mike will be there for Kieran. Because this is true love and in the end, it’s all that matters.
If you have a moment this Valentine’s week, please send a prayer out for Kieran and for all those who suffer.