Tuesday, June 06, 2006

After two grueling days at Children's Hospital, fighting the nurses, doctors, and aids, one grandmother and a mom, this little boy enjoyed a couple of hours at the St. Louis Zoo.

"So, Jon, what was your favorite part of the zoo?"

"Mmmmmm, I like elephants."

"They are really big. Do they scare you?"

"Not these elephants. They were hot and wanted to squirt water all over themselves. And two of them are going to have baby elephants soon."

"What other animals impressed you at the zoo?"

"I thought the penquins were pretty cool. They stink though. I had to hold my breath inside the cave. And the fish are fun to watch, too. FISH!!"

"You were very brave at the hospital. What did they have you do?"

"I had to hold really still while this big machine was lowered over my chest. I did not hold still and they made me do it again later."

"That was an xray machine. Did they take blood, too?"

"They waited til the end of the first day. I screamed a lot. They could not find blood vessels in my arms. Before that they did a sweat test and wrapped plastic around my arm."

"You knew you were allergic to peanuts before you went to the hospital. Did they confirm this allergy?"

"Yes, I can't have peanuts like the elephants can, but I hope I can play with the elephants anyway. And I am allergic to peas, which are disgusting anyway--so who cares-- and I can't eat wheat."

"I am sure you will find many other things to eat. What else did the doctors learn?"

"I have an unusually formed aortic path that they call an arch. It is serious, but they are going to help me and I won't get resptr--restripo--repsti-- colds and stuff so much. That will be a good thing."

"I'm glad to hear that. What test did you have to find this out?"

"I had to go back the next day and have, I think it is called, an upper GI. I couldn't eat anything for breakfast and I was hungry. All they had was barium to drink in lemon-lime. Talk about disgusting. I refused to drink it. But they have ways of making little, defenseless, boys, like me, drink barium, so in the end they shot it into my mouth through a tiny tube. I had to be still while the big machine watched me swallow and my insides showed up on a tv screen."

"You really were brave. I hear that you liked the train in the entrance of the hospital."

"They have two trains that go up and down part of the hallway on tracks way up by the ceiling. They whistle and everything. It was my favorite thing at the hospital. And there is a train at the zoo that I like, too.

"I am happy that you got to visit the zoo animals after your brave days at the hospital."

"Me, too!! I love the zoo."

jon --22 months old

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