Yesterday Namine had a blood test done at the pediatrician’s office. Normally I’ll manage to get away from work to be there, as Jessica gets queasy at the sight of blood and it bothers me not a bit, but I had a presentation to give. So three nurses held down a screaming, crying Namine to take her blood.

We don’t take doctor appointments lightly, and this was no random blood draw. Namine has been fairly tired – I would even use the word lethargic – lately. Her appetite has taken a hit lately as well. She’s not sick that we know of – no cold, no sniffles or runny nose, no ear aches or infections – and the normal parent might say, “Eh, whatever it is, they’ll get over it.”

But we’re not normy parents, and Namine is no normy child. Lethargy, decreased appetite; these things are – or can be – key indications that her heart needs some attention. There is the very real possibility that Namine is close to needing the third heart surgery, the Fontan. Thus, the blood draw.

They will do a few tests to determine if it could be something else, like anemia and what have you. It’ll be a few days, and we’re used to waiting on results. It oughtn’t be more than a few days, not nearly as bad as the week-plus we waited for Jessica’s bone marrow test results. If those results come back negative, the next step is to see her cardiologist, who will hopefully be able to tell us more.

Yesterday evening, as I was getting Namine undressed in order to bathe her, I pointed to the Band-Aid on her arm. “What’s that?” I asked.

Namine looked down at the small, circular bandage. “I got that at the doctor’s office,” she said.

“Really? What did they do?” Of course Jessica had filled me in earlier that day, but I try to stimulate as much conversation, thought, and logic as I can. I believe articulation in thought is important, and Namine gets better every day at conveying specifics.

“The doctor took my blood.” Matter-of-fact and somber.

“Oh, I’m sorry, honey. Can I kiss it better?”

A smile lit up her face like fireworks in the night sky. “Yeah! You can give my owwy kisses! I love you so much, Haha.”

Namine knows what she’s in for when she goes to the doctor. She doesn’t like it, and she gets mad at us in the moment of putting her through it. But at the end of the day (in this case, literally), she knows that we love her.


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