This is the story of my son Max. On the 2nd of June, 2011 Max had a stroke and was admitted to the ICU at the Royal Childrens Hospital. On that day he was also diagnosed with Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP). At the time he was only 10 weeks old.
Tuesday, 21 June 2011
Saturday 4th of June- Meeting the neurologist
That day Rob and I met with a Neurologist to discuss the results of Max's MRI the previous day. It was a somber room full of doctors from varying specialties all looking either at their hands or at Rob and I with that annoying sympathetic look. Dr Jeremy started nervously, I could tell that he was choosing his words very carefully. He drew a diagram of a brain and showed us the areas where damage had occured. I'm not sure if this was the first time I heard the words 'extensive brain damage' but it wouldn't be the last. All I wanted to know was exactly what Max could and could not do. Of course it wasn't that easy and Dr Jeremy used unbiguous statements like "there's no reason why he can't" and "infants with his level of damage have gone on to...". He explained to us that infants brains are very good at rewiring themselves when damage has occurred. In a sense we were lucky that this had happened when he was still a baby because the right side of his brain would (hopefully) learn to take over the functions of the left. There were things that he'd probably never have like fine motor skills in his right hand and peripheral vision from his right eye. This much I could live with. I wanted to know whether he'd have some form of mental retardation. Dr Jeremy couldn't answer that and again used a good ol' non committal response. By and large it was a waiting game. We wouldn't know much about his brain damage until he woke up and it would take years to see the full picture. I wanted to scream but I couldn't. I just smiled and nodded as the somber mob of doctors filed out of the room.