After School Special: Through The Fire and Flames

Almost 2 weeks ago, Angry Baby had a seizure. In the midst of the WORST STOMACH FLU in the history of ever, I feebly typed out the saga for all to read, in a post called “Hell Week.”  

As promised, I have returned to complete the tale of woe and worry. It’s not that I’ve ignored the need for closure on your part, it’s simply that until yesterday, we still were waiting for an answer.

Things are lookin’ up, kid!

Through The Fire and Flames


Last Wednesday, we sold our old house and Angry Baby had an EEG. To say it was action-packed that day, is an understatement.

First up, our 7:45 appointment with the fine folks in the Epilepsy Center at Texas Children’s West Campus.

The EEG came with a litany of instructions for prior to the test. Friendly Tip: Anytime you get a list of pre-procedure precautions, and it involves a toddler, you might as well kiss your buns goodbye. As they say in the old country, “You’re f*cked.”

The prep consisted of me physically restraining Angry Baby while she was fitted with 28 electrodes. If she was EVER going to have another seizure, it surely would have been during the 2.5 hour hissy she threw.

Girlfriend was furious, beet-red and shockingly strong. Add the fact her head was taped up and the tape was pushing against swollen eyes, Angry Baby looked just like she did as an infant. As the Nurse and I mopped up sweat from fighting the brute strength of fear and youth, I began to sing the theme song to Sesame Street. Dora, the incredible technician, sang backup.

After singing through the Sesame Street theme song twice and naming all of the characters would could think of, Angry Baby took it down a notch and allowed the prep to finish. After many tears and buckets of SWEAT, finally, AB was ready for the actual EEG.

The test itself was quick. They left us in the room, turned out all the lights and began flashing a personal strobe light all up in Angry Baby’s mug. She was mesmerized and stared on. After a few minutes, came the second part of the test, the part where my kid was supposed to just fall right asleep and have her sleeping brainwaves monitored.

“Alright girly, time to take a nap,” Dora announced. Ever the little jokester, Valor began pretend snoring, and pulled the blanket over herself. It might have been half convincing, had she not stared at Dora the whole time she loudly “snored.”

Prior to the 2 hours of brutal raging, I just knew there was no way in HAIL Angry Baby was just going to “take a little nap.” Easily falling asleep is just not something she’s capable of. Of course, I wanted to be positive and help the staff any way that I could, so I pulled up a rocking chair to the hospital bed and began stroking her cheek. The lights were out, they piped in classical lullabies and before I knew it, 7 minutes to be exact, Valor was out cold.

Perhaps it was the emotion and exhaustion of what we just completed, but in the dark and cool room, amid a sleeping little Angel, I started to cry.

They were silent tears, I restricted my breathing as to not sob, choke, or let out a single sigh. The salty traitors flowed.

My kid is so brave.  

The doctors, tests, scary places and prodding? All these things Angry Baby handled it in her usual stride. Yes, she was furious, but more importantly, Angry Baby was a warrior, champing through all that was thrown her way.

I pulled my blubbering self together just in time for the nurse to buzz in instructing me to wake the serene little jelly bean. Angry Baby startled awake and went right back to fit throwin’.

After all was cleaned up, Dora informed me that we would have results within a week. I smiled and shot out the fakest, “Wonderful! Thanks for everything!” In reality, I was about to pass out from disappointment. A WHOLE WEEK, REALLY!?

Clearly, our screamo-bonding session wasn’t the friendship starting ordeal I thought it was. My foolish self thought Dora would come in, throw me a wink and say (off the record of course,) “Looks good.”

Dora’s inability to give me information was a kick to my pills, the inner crazy started talking. “If she’s not telling you anything, it must be because she saw something not good.”

The truth was and is this: as a medical professional, Dora was bound to secrecy. Regardless of the results, a truly skilled technician, would never betray the patient by speculating out of turn.

Test done and on our way home, we pulled out of the Hospital parking lot for the 2nd time in a week. Angry Baby once again began to sing sweetly in the back seat. Whatever the future held for our family, epilepsy or not, the worst was clearly behind us. All we had to do now was wait.

Yesterday afternoon, the results came.

After two weeks waiting on pins and needles, we were informed that Valor is perfectly healthy and shows no signs of Epilepsy. Sweet Relief.

To all of you who have written, prayed, meditated, wished, hoped and worried for Angry Baby: thank you. We will forever be in debt to your kindness.

I’d like to give a much deserved plug to the saints and geniuses at Texas Children’s Hospital especially the Blue Bird Circle Clinic and its incredible volunteers who actually managed to make Angry Baby (and her terrified folks) smile.

To learn more about this place of healing, where humanity is truly at the summit, please watch the following…

Thank you to Doctor Carlos Rivera, MD for reassuring us from the get-go, many apologies for Angry Baby’s massive, awe-inspiring, fit. We are quite proud that in all of your years of practice, her rage was enough to take your breath away!

He kept telling Valor: “Oooh-ee Girlfriend, calm down!”

 Most importantly, thanks to my partner in kid-grime, Lover Fo’ Life. I won’t embarrass him by going all moony-eyed about how awesome he is. But I will say this: I’ll never deserve the strength, friendship, and unconditional love he has unfalteringly provided for the last (nearly) eleven years. I love you, MT.

To those of you who are travailing through sickness within your own family, I wish you healing, support and love.

photo of Dr. Rivera via

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