Sunday, 25 January 2009
This gorgeous little boy arrived at GLA last August. He was 9 months old and weighed 10 lb. His bony frame was covered in scars and his ashen face was dominated by huge ears. He was not a pretty sight.
He has underlying health problems that make it difficult for him to gain weigh. As 2008 drew to a close, he was having diarrhoea almost every day and he had problems keeping his formula down. To make matters worse, he was not able to tolerate foods that were thick, or lumpy. He was not recovering from his malnutrition, but I was not ready to give up the fight.
We treated him for parasites. We gave him antibiotics to treat bacterial and protozoal infections, and drugs to help reduce the vomiting. Despite all of this, we saw limited improvement in his overall condition.
That changed when we started him on a hypoallergenic formula. It appeared that my little man was sensitive not only to lactose but also to the proteins in milk-based and soy-based formulas.
By December, the nannies and nurses noticed he was 'beginning to change.' The diarrhoea had settled and he was no longer vomiting. He was gaining half a pound every week. His hair was growing in and his skin was taking on a warm glow. He began to pull him self long on his belly, and a few weeks later, he was too active to join me for our weekly bible study.
I love this little man's shy smile. I love his peals of laughter, and the light in his eyes. I love that I have to tell him it is not OK to reach over and steal the bottle from the baby in the next crib. In short, I love this boy. If it were possible for me to take him home with me, I would, but since it is not, I have faith that God has something better in store for him.
I am watching over his health carefully and deliver doses of TLC everyday, along with the medications and supplements he receives. Mine is not the only heart this boy holds. He has a volunteer on the balcony who thinks he is wonderful, and an experienced nanny who is working on transitioning him onto the regular nursery menu. She does a wonderful job of getting fluids and nutrition into him on the days he is not feeling well. Although this little mans health remains fragile, I believe that we have broken the cycle of malnutrition and ill-health and that is quite a victory!
He has a fever tonight and is vomiting, but he weighs 18lb now and I believe that he will be feeling better in a few days. Please join me in thanks-giving that we have access to the medicines and the formula he has needed. May God continue to provide all we need for our children. May he bless this little man with a healing. May he continue to grow and thrive, and may love forever dominate his life.
Posted by Susan Westwood at 12:54