When Skylar was 2 1/2 years old she complained for a few days of severe stomach pain. As a small child it was hard to tell if she was constipated, ate something bad or just simply had a stomach virus. After a few days we decided it had to be more than a virus, maybe it was her appendix.
Matt and I spent about 15 hours at Columbus Children’s ER while they tried desperately to figure out why she was in pain. After several failed attempts of getting an ultra sound on her appendix (stubborn girl had a full bladder and they couldn’t view her appendix properly) it was finally decided to give her a CT scan so they could see what they needed to.
Matt and I waited as patiently as we could…at 22 and 23 years old and sitting in a room with a 7 month old we were desperate for the news to be simple and correctable. Before long a doctor we had not seen before walked into the room and told us he had good news and bad news. The good news: it wasn’t her appendix. The bad news: it was her heart. Her pericardium to be exact. This man was a pediatric cardiologist ….that was the fist time my world went silent.
We were informed that Sky would need surgery fairly quickly. She had pericarditis (inflammation of her pericardium) and it was restricting blood flow to her heart and causing her stomach pain. It didn’t take long for me to realize and THANK GOD that Skylar was being stubborn with her ultra sound and refusal to empty her bladder….otherwise a CT scan never would have been ordered and this heart issue would not have been detected until it was too late. Her cardiologist was quick to realize and voice this as well…he said “God was looking out for your little girl.”
Surgery went well and more than 700 cc’s of fluid were removed from around our little girls tiny body. After a few nights in ICU and some steroid therapy and a few years of regular cardiology check ups, Sky was given a clean bill of health. All she had to show from this experience was a 3-4 inch scar in the center of her chest (of course she hated this as she matured). That story is something I told over and over to people that ever doubted God’s helping hand and Sky and I talked about it many times over the years. Without that wonderful cardiologist who ordered that CT Scan, modern medical technology, a stubborn 2 year old that just wouldn’t “go” and a God that loved her more than even I … Sky would have left us at age 2 1/2.
I tell that story because just hours and maybe even moments after those police officers and coroners left my home the morning of the accident I cried out to God and asked WHYYYYYYYYY?!!! Why did you save her 14 years ago only to take her from me now!???
Boy was I angry. Why would he “tease me” with 14 more years of memories? I’ve thought about that a lot over the last 10 months and of course things are more clear to me now then they were 10 mos ago at 4am when being told that your first-born child is no longer alive. I still don’t have all the answers that I want but I know I certainly wouldn’t trade my 14 extra precious years with her or the lesson that I learned through that experience knowing that God had her in His hands back then…..and still today. We were all given the gift of Skylar because she changed so many people in her short time on this earth…she certainly changed her mama.
In life she taught us to live, love and laugh. She taught us that not everyone is a good friend but she was an AMAZING one. She taught me that at her young age she gave some of the best advice and she was always willing to listen to me vent. She also taught me that a young girl can go through a TON of Q-tips, tampons, toilet paper, make-up, body wash, borrowed cash and chapstick!
In her death Sky taught us all to live a little better, to love a little harder and to appreciate your time here while you can.
I miss my baby girl with every fiber of my being and I spend hours and hours of my day thinking about her and looking at her pictures. Thank you God for giving me 16 1/2 years of time and memories with my angel…it wasn’t nearly enough, but I am counting down my days until I am with her forever. Stay close to me Sky, I need you.
Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.