This morning Gavin and I headed to DuPont Children's Hospital. He had a follow up visit with the neurologist who saw him in the Emergency Room after his seizure. This particular neurologist just happened to be on call the night we came to the hospital - so it was really the luck of the draw that we got him. As it turns out, we were so lucky! Dr. Bean has a great reputation - and getting an appointment with him is not easy. Now that we've seen him, I can understand why.
Gavin and I got there a little early. Because he's so popular, I brought entertainment for Gavin and a book (Guts by Kristen Johnston) for me. We never saw either - we were whisked back right on time. When Dr. Bean walked into the room with his black bag, I couldn't help but smile. This was an old school doc, for sure. My Dad would love this guy.
He went over Gavin's EEG results and told us that everything looked fine. Whew! Then he did his physical examination. Gavin was so cooperative and the two of them laughed like they were old buddies. It was a riot - they really had a connection! I wish I had videoed this exact scene instead of photographing it so you could hear them laughing...
Dr. Bean kept remarking, "He's a pleasant young fellow!"
Yes he is, Dr. Bean.
Dr. Bean explained to us that Gavin has a 50% chance of a repeat seizure. He didn't diagnose him with a seizure disorder or anything - but told us 50% because of his underlying neurological condition. He also told me in advance to not blame myself if Gavin does have another seizure. That even if I administer Tylenol to keep a fever down - and watch him like a hawk - he could still have one. The plan is to go back in one year for a follow up...unless he has a seizure. If he does have another one, we will re-evaluate and discuss seizure medication. I feel sure in my bones that Gavin will NOT need seizure medication. Let's hope I'm right.
The doctor spent a lot of time with us, but we were still out of the hospital before lunch! Since we didn't have to be home until 2:30 for Gavin's Occupational Therapy, I decided to take him out to lunch. We stopped on the way home at a brand new Whole Foods. I was so proud of Gavin! He's still a bit under the weather, but he had been so pleasant all morning. Then at Whole Foods, he sat in one of those little wooden high chairs with no back. Typically we have a hard time with those chairs - Gavin loves to arch backwards and hang over the edge. It kind of makes it challenging to feed him - we end up having to force his head still while we spoon food in his mouth. (Basically, we barely eat out.) But not today! Gavin sat like such a big boy and I fed him two whole yogurts while he sat and smiled and laughed with me. Never once did he arch backwards.
His eye contact has been incredible lately. When he looks into my eyes it usually chokes me up because it's so intense! After we ate, I put Gavin in the shopping cart and we strolled up and down the aisles. He was really snuggly and would rest his head on my chest as we walked around. And every so often he'd lift his hand up to my cheek...just as if to say he loved me. I was having such an enjoyable day with my little man!!
After I checked out I decided I should make a quick trip to the ladies room. We still had about a forty minute drive home. I pushed the cart down the hallway and, once I realized it would fit, pulled it in behind me into the restroom. As I turned around to look at Gavin in the cart there was a woman walking in behind us. She scowled at me...Gavin...AND the cart and said,
"I'm SURE they didn't mean for you to bring the grocery carts into the bathroom." she said.
"I'm sorry, but I didn't have a choice. My son doesn't walk," I responded sweetly and almost too apologetically.
She looked at Gavin with her eyebrows raised, head cocked to one side and her lips pursed...as if to say, 'Yeah right.'
I responded with, "No really. He's disabled. He really can't walk. I really didn't have a choice. I clearly wouldn't leave him out in the hall!"
To which she HMMPHED and walked into a stall.
My first thought was, 'I want to punch this lady in the throat.'
My second thought was, 'I REALLY want to punch this lady in the throat.'
My third thought was, 'I will not let this woman ruin my day. If she knew even half of Gavin's story, she'd feel just awful for judging us.'
I decided to feel sorry for her...this woman clearly struggles in social situations and probably doesn't have a lot of friends. I thought of a new saying recently - something to say to myself in moments like this. If I had had the guts today, I would have waited outside the restroom for her and said...
"The cover of the book is really the SMALLEST part of the story."
It's a shame I didn't. Because in this case, Gavin's story might have changed her. Cute cover and all.