Those were the doctor’s words to me. I stood there, holding my beautiful little boy, trying not to fall completely apart. I didn’t do all that well, truth be told.
It had been a rough month.
After years of struggles, we had been blessed with our youngest son, Isaac Lee, through adoption. He wasn’t legally ours yet…but he was our boy, just as surely as if he had grown in my own womb. And we were thrilled with him. He brought new life to our household, and we were all still loving every minute of it.
Then, just a short while after he came into our lives, I found out I was pregnant. We were surprised…and heartbroken when we lost that baby almost four months into the pregnancy.
So there I stood, just about a month later, in my pediatrician’s office, hearing those words…” Could be cataracts…or a tumor.”
My husband had noticed Isaac’s pupil looking a “little blue” that morning. We had never noticed it before. His eyes are so big and beautifully dark that I am sure we would have noticed it if it had been there before. He had been seen by countless doctors, social workers, etc. since his birth, and no one else had ever seen anything amiss with his beautiful eyes.
I asked the doctor, “So, you are referring us to a specialist?” He didn’t say anything for a minute. It felt like an eternity. He looked at me and said, “No….you need to go to the ER immediately and have him examined. We will call ahead for you.”
That’s when I lost it. I immediately started bawling, holding him tightly against me. I felt like if I held him tightly enough, and until we knew what was going on, he was still this perfect little angel…not disabled or diseased in any way.
The next few hours went agonizingly slow. Because he was still a foster child, and not on our insurance, we had to take him to the county hospital. Oh, what a special joy that was. Lucky us, we got to share the ER that day with drug addicts, convicts (not exaggerating…across the hall from our space was a woman dressed in an orange jumpsuit, handcuffed to her gurney, escorted by a policeman.) and an assortment of other characters odd, sad, and all a little depressing.
Finally, THE doctor came to see us. After a brief exam, and waiting for the correct equipment to check his eyes with…the result: severe cataracts in both eyes. His one eye was already blind. No sight at all. That was the “blue” eye my husband noticed. The other eye, though severe, still had sight. The prognosis? Debatable.
But, I was happy as a lark. He may be partially blind, but no tumor. His sight may get better. There was hope…something I felt I had run plumb out of by that point. Besides, this was something they might be able to fix.
And then it hit me…I forgot to call the social worker. My first time as a “foster” mother, and I completely forgot one of the major rules. Any time there is a medical emergency I was supposed to call them as soon as possible. For some reason, it just never occurred to me during all of those hours in the ER.
So, I finally made the call. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was taken aback by the response. “You know that there is nothing saying you have to adopt him still, right?”
“You haven’t signed the final papers yet. You can still change your mind.”
“Are you kidding me?!?! He is my boy. This changes nothing!”
“I knew you would say that. Just wanted to make sure you knew.”
I was almost speechless. To think that was what was first on her mind..to let me know the contract hadn’t been finalized yet…unbelievable.
Within two months, Isaac endured two separate surgeries. He grew to hate going to the doctor. They operated on the “bad eye” first. It wasn’t instantaneously, but two weeks after surgery, he regained 100 percent of his sight for the bad eye. He had to wear glasses for a while, and due to another injury later, his right eye is super sensitive to light so he looks a little like a pirate when he first wakes up or goes outside in bright sunlight.
But…he is perfect to US….we have much to be thankful for.