I remember my mom calling me at work and telling me that Ethan had his first official black eye and she felt like the worst grandma ever. He was almost eight months old and I just smiled. “What did that crazy kid do this time?” I asked her. Apparently he had been in his walker and leaned down to pick up a toy from the ground and bonked his head on the walker tray. That night when I picked him up it wasn’t that bad and we honestly thought nothing of it. We did notice that week how he was getting quite a few bruises all over the place, but he was a pretty crazy and active boy. Finally he started to get a weird “rash” of sorts. It was not on the skin but seemed to be under the skin and was purple. My mother started to get a little worried about it and was thinking it could be the measles. Being the kind of mother I am my only response to her was, “The kid is crazy, he has no other symptoms, no fever, no cough, I’m sure he is fine.” But then that day at work I started looking up different rashes and came across the perfect picture of Ethan’s rash. I found out that these spots or rash was purpura. Basically what that is is blood from blood cells that have burst that make it to the skin. We all have blood cells that burst, however normally our platelets heal them in time before the blood gets to the layer of skin. I did what uneducated parents should never do; I followed a few different links and freaked myself out enough that I called the Dr. right away and made an appointment for that night. I made Chris go with me to this Dr. Appointment and can still remember the drive out there. I was worried that they were going to take one look at Ethan and think we were abusive parents. I was convinced they would never believe us when we told them how crazy Ethan was and that he got all those bruises by himself. There was a huge tire fire just off the side of the freeway and it was backing up traffic. We talked about the fire for a while and continued on to the Dr. Dr. Duddy came into the office and took a good look at Ethan and then said, “These marks are called purpura.” And then he explained to us what it was. He referred us to get blood drawn and gave us a “stat” order. We were one of his last patients which put us in a tough position to get Ethan’s blood drawn that night. Our insurance of course only allowed us to use LabCorp and the one next to the office was already closed. The Dr. gave us his most current list of LabCorp offices and hours, we found the one that was still open and headed about 20 minutes away to it. We pulled up and noticed that the office was closed. I would like to say I was not panicked and was nice and calm but I can’t. I was irate that this location said it was opened late, however it was closed. I was frustrated that we weren’t going to get this blood work done and that we wouldn’t know what was wrong with Ethan. Fortunately Chris was with me and was ever so calm. He suggested we call some of the offices until we found one that was still opened. We did this and found one which was only about 5 minutes away and was still open. We rushed over there just in time to be the last patient of the day. Although the word “Stat” was highlighted on our paperwork I pointed it out to the lady behind the desk as well. Finally it was our turn to get blood drawn and Ethan did a pretty good job, for only being 8 months old. After this we headed home to eat and get Ethan to bed. By the time we got the blood drawn it was after 6 and Ethan’s bed time was 7. From the moment we got home I carried my phone around with me waiting for the Dr. to call. He said he would call us when he got the results and I was anxiously awaiting them. If I went upstairs so did my phone. Finally around 9pm I decided that no news was good news and that the Dr. would probably not be calling us that night. I told Chris goodnight and headed upstairs. I brushed my teeth, got in my PJs and picked up my phone to go to bed and it rang. I didn’t notice the number and got a little panicked by that. “Hello” I said with a forced smile. “Hi Hilary, This is Dr. Duddy. I have Ethan’s test results… Can you put your husband on the phone as well.” Immediently my heart sank and I started crying. He hadn’t even given me any news and here I was crying. I practically ran down the stairs and threw the phone at Chris, “It’s Dr. Duddy!” I said fighting back tears from Chris and then I headed to the top of the stairs and curled up. My heart was pounding as I heard a one sided conversation that sounded a lot like, “Okay, yes we can do that.” “No that shouldn’t be a problem.” “ahuh” “Okay” “How long” “If that is what we need to do” “They will be expecting us?” With each new sentence more fear entered into my body and more tears streamed down my face. I heard Chris say good-bye and I braced myself. Chris came over to the stairs and calmly walked up them and sat next to me. He told me that Ethan’s platelets were seriously low, the normal is 150,000-450,000 and Ethan’s were around 3,000. It could be a bad reading, because platelets stick together, however because they were so low the Dr. wanted us to take Ethan to Sunrise Children’s Hospital, where they already had all our information and would be waiting for us. He then told me that Dr. Duddy had given him different scenarios and the worse case scenario, just so we would not be shocked by it, this scenario being Leukemia. The hospital would run a few tests and maybe do a bone marrow draw to determine exactly what it is. There is a lot more that Dr. Duddy told him that I must have chosen to forget, but after he was done talking I told him, “No, we aren’t going to the hospital, my son is sleeping and there is nothing wrong with him. Look at him, he’s sleeping just fine, he’s fine!” Even when I said the words I knew we would be going to the hospital because I knew there was something wrong with my son and the only real way to protect my son was to go to the hospital. We called my parents to come over and give Ethan a blessing before we went to the hospital. I dialed their number and said hello and then had to pass the phone over to Chris again because I couldn’t speak. My parents were there in no time, how grateful I am that my husband and Dad were able to give Ethan a blessing and then I got one too. In my blessing Chris said that all would be well and I’d be able to handle all that was presented to me. With that my dad headed home and Chris, Ethan, my mom and I headed to the hospital. Chris hugged me more than once and told me everything would be fine more than once. I held tight to his hope for the entire next year….