The double doors into the waiting room flung open with a burst of urgency. On the gurney lay the lifeless body of a baby – our precious granddaughter, Brooklynn. Directly behind the paramedics, our son hurried in with a look I hope to never see again - one of obvious pain and anguish. His face matched the white sheet which covered his only child.
Just as they reached a second set of double doors, the paramedics put a hand up to signify our son could go no further. Trent walked over to his dad and me and fell into my arms sobbing.
“I'm so scared!” he cried, unashamed of the tears now freely flowing down his face.
We found a place to sit in the crowded waiting room. Trent had told us by phone that our granddaughter was being airlifted to Children's Hospital in Seattle. Only one parent was allowed to accompany her on the flight so our daughter-in-law would make the three-hour drive with her mother.
“Mom, would you go in with me to talk to the doctor?”
“Of course, Trent,” I said, praying that I could hold myself together for our son.
Prior to leaving our home in Tacoma, I had called my church and asked for prayer. Little Brooklynn was only eleven months old and she would need every prayer warrior available. I also called my sister in Denver to ask that she contact her church for the same reason. Just as I began telling our son about the steps I had put into motion, a very serious-looking nurse stepped out from behind the infamous double doors and requested that the parents of Brooklynn Leyman follow her.
“Come on, mom,” Trent said. I could feel his body trembling as I took his arm.
The doctor's demeanor was noticeably as somber as the nurse who had called us back.
“Please, come in and sit down.” He motioned to where we should sit.
“My name is Dr. Pratt,” he began. We sat and listened to the doctor, not wanting to miss a word he had to say about our precious Brooklynn; however, we weren't prepared for what we were about to hear.
“Mr. Leyman, I don't think I have to tell you how ill your baby is. But I must be totally honest with you. Your daughter is gravely ill. She may be here for a week, she may be here for a month, or...” The doctor stopped briefly. I could tell he wanted to choose his words wisely in this most difficult consultation.
Dr. Pratt continued.. “Mr. Leyman, you and your family need to prepare yourselves for the possibility that your daughter may never leave Children's.” As he watched my son collapse into my arms once again, he hung his head in anguish of what he had just had to tell us.
Dear Lord, I prayed, please keep me in your loving power that I might stay strong for my son. And, Father, please be with the doctors, nurses and any staff who will care for Brooklynn and give them the wisdom to know the steps to take to get her through this crisis as she fights for her life. Amen.
Almost immediately, Brooklynn was placed in a drug-induced coma to help her little body stay quiet and fight this illness that threatened her life. Five-minute visits were allowed once an hour for parents and grandparents while Brooklynn remained in Intensive Care. Children's Hospital also provided a room for family members to rest, but little rest came for any of us.
The prayers of my church, my sister's church and those of friends and of course family, were heard and answered affirmatively from up above. In just one week, Brooklynn was brought out of the coma and was on her way to a full recovery. No diagnosis was ever made, other than a mysterious respiratory ailment that nearly claimed her life.
After making a very huge hit with the doctors and nurses with her gorgeous big black eyes and beautiful smile, Brooklynn and her parents headed home just a little over a week from the day she took her first airplane ride. Her daddy's smile returned, and gone was his former ghost-like white face.
Today, Brooklynn is a very healthy eight-year old third grader. We praise the Lord for His greatness!
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