She is hilarious. Seriously, she makes us laugh all the time and I think she knows she is pretty darn funny because if you request “the face” the above picture is the result. She also loves giving things to people, no matter who, no matter what. She has kazi (or work) for sure and people frequently comment on the devotion and drive she exhibits in being so busy constantly. I just never want to forget her funny, sweet little quirks of right now. I never want the recent sickness yuck to overshadow the sweetness of our Evy girl right now. Our girls are blessing and chaos and crazy all rolled together. I have been waiting to update about her health because there have been so many moving pieces.
Evy Imani has been to the doctor more times than I care to count in the last few weeks. Waiting room after waiting room, lab tests, scans, blood draws, and allergy tests. Poor baby has had blood taken so many times she starts to cry when she sees a pair of latex gloves. We came back after much prayer and dealing with almost constant sickness since November including rashes, bloody diapers, diarrhea, vomiting, high fevers, and seizures. And for us we got to the point we felt we needed to make sure there was not something more serious going on in her little body. We both felt God was teaching us not just to endure everything but trust and be grateful that even when our kids are sick or hurting He has purpose and He is good. And we need to not just hold our breath through it but be thankful IN it. That lesson has been hard but we know that He is in at all.
Today we got home from the last appointment (except a quick stop off at the travel clinic for Anni and I on Thursday). After our second opinion at Children’s at the University of Iowa we felt pretty good about everything. Both the specialists there and at Rush came to the same conclusions: she is a pretty healthy, vibrant little girl who has had a wicked string of bacterial infections and she runs really high fevers putting her in danger of seizures when she is sick. And she probably would have gotten sick here too but of course we would not had to have dealt with all the above symptoms without doctors and good medical advice. We knew we needed to rule out underlying elpilepsy or immune deficiency (from the recommendations of two doctors and a nurse) and from the looks of everything we can say she does not have these as of right now (a small percentage of kids who have febrile seizures do have epileptic seizures as adults but it is a “watch and see” thing that we can not know now). So we felt that we had done everything and then she got sick again. Not as bad but high fever for 2 days and the diarrhea again. It seemed to us a cycle repeating so we saw the doctor again and this time asked for even more tests to rule out chronic typhoid (since she had it in November) and tested for more parasites or amoebas, etc. We also tested for allergies to gluten. This morning the results came in and she does not have any of those! Yeah! But again we have no clear reason she has been so sick but we know it happened in Africa AND here. But we have perspective on it. While we sorta wish they found something specific and we could knock it out but the things we were testing for and that it could have been are pretty serious and at the least could have been major game changers on what we so know is our family’s call to live in Africa right now. We also are grateful for the timing in coming back to reconnect with friends and family and we now also have enough drugs packed to medicate the entire island if needed! We have medicine to use in case of prolonged seizures to help protect her in the land of no 911. And that makes a huge difference in feeling peaceful about going back. We also discussed with the doctor the possibility of some other food allergies which could explain some of her symptoms so we are going to try cutting milk first and then try removing other foods to see if anything changes. We just want to guard this precious girl He has entrusted to us in the best ways we can knowing He is ultimately in control. Living in total “safety” is an illusion and we know where our Help comes from. And we are learning to Trust and be Thankful. We head back to our island in less than a week and are praying continued healing for Evy and even more Trust and Peace for our family.