How easily we forget as we go along in our day to day activities, that life as we know it can change in an instant. Friends of ours experienced a change like that recently, when their two year old daughter suddenly became gravely ill.
Although there’s no financial lesson in this story, I’d like to share it nonetheless, because it is a compelling story of faith, prayer, God’s grace, and the amazing strength of a toddler and her family.
Hundreds of people all over the world have been praying for Meadow, and if you are a prayerful person we would so appreciate your joining in. And if her story moves you to want to do something tangible to help, you can find more information by clicking the link to read more.
The words of Meadow’s dad, Mark–
In ten minutes, Meadow went from running through our living room, happy as a kid could be, to knocking on death’s door and facing the unthinkable. On January 11, 2013, the day before her 2nd birthday party, Meadow was running a medium fever and just wanted to sleep. That night, my, then 7 month pregnant, wife, Melissa, noticed that she was only holding her sippy cup with only one hand. She then noticed that her left arm was very swollen. We called the doctor’s emergency line and were advised to bring her to the Emergency Room as it sounded like a possible Colitis.
Upon arrival at the emergency room, Meadow was very upset. She was crying to get out of the bed and go home. They ran an IV and began giving her fluids while doing a throat and blood culture. Within minutes the doctor returned and had arranged for ambulance transportation to another hospital that specialized in pediatric intensive care. The diagnosis was Streptococcus A that had begun going septic. This basically meant that unlike the commonly heard of, Strep Throat, this strain of Strep A had gone throughout her entire body. In the forty minute ambulance ride from one hospital to the other, everything changed. Meadow went into complete toxic shock and her body began to fully shut down.
By the time she arrived at Lehigh Valley Hospital, she was completely unresponsive. There was no reaction to the needles they were sticking her with and no reaction to anything. At that time, the ICU doctors prepared us for the worst. Her entire body at that point had become completely swollen and overrun with Petechia. This looked similar to an intense outbreak of chicken pox on her skin in various spots. We were told by the doctors that it was because she was bleeding under her skin. At this point, the IV that had been placed in her was no longer usable as the vein had blown from the intense swelling. The doctors and nurses struggled for minutes upon minutes of critical time trying to find a plausible spot to inject the IV and get the necessary fluids into her. Still, she remained unresponsive, and eventually, the nurses were successful in getting the needle in. They began pumping antibiotics into Meadow at a rapid rate to try and gain control of the infection. They then needed to intubate her with a breathing tube and perform a variety of tests.
The ultrasound showed a clot in her left arm. By the next morning, her fingers had become a dark purple, near black, color. The doctors said that there were also clots in her fingertips that would possibly lead to lifelong loss of sensation or use of her fingers. The Intensive Care Specialist then summoned the input of Orthopedics. Ortho felt that she may need surgery to remove what they thought might possibly be a small fluid collection around her elbow that would have needed to be drained in a fairly routine procedure. They ordered an MRI to confirm. When the MRI came back, life changed.
Her case was looked at by Orthopedics and the Infectious Disease team, and her arm was diagnosed with Necrotizing Fasciitis, more commonly referred to as the flesh-eating disease.
This is only the beginning of the arduous road Meadow traveled and is still traveling. Read more about Meadow’s story here.