“Mama,” Hazel’s little boy called out to her that morning during breakfast.
“Can we go see Daisy? I miss her,” the little boy said with an adorable pout.
“Yes, tiger. We’ll go see your sister today. Now finish up breakfast, Honey,” she instructed, taking off her apron and joining him at the table.
“Yay, Daisy!” He cheered excitedly, scooping another spoonful of cereal.
She had already called the office to let them know she would be late that day. The small family of two enjoyed their breakfast together, savoring the simple moments.
Hazel cleared the table while her son settled in front of the television, engrossed in a cartoon show. The familiar intro song of “Puppy Dog Pals” echoed through the room, casting a calming and soothing spell over the house.
Hazel hummed along to the theme song while her son danced to it, their laughter filling the
“I love this feeling. If Daisy were home, everything would be complete. The house wouldn’t be this quiet; she would have argued with her brother to watch a different TV show instead,” Hazel thought sadly to herself with a sigh.
About four years ago, she had given birth to twins, a boy and a girl whom she had lovingly named Daisy and Liam. Her daughter’s survival itself was a miracle. At birth, Daisy had been pronounced stillborn, her fragile body lifeless. But a determined nurse had refused to give up, tirelessly administering CPR until the newborn’s weak cry pierced the silence, breaking
Although Daisy had survived, she remained a very fragile child, requiring frequent hospital visits. The hospital had become like a second home to them.
Hazel sighed once more, her little fighter enduring so much. The doctors had postponed the heart surgery on account of Daisy’s small and fragile frame, and they were walking on thin ice while waiting. Daisy’s last seizure had thrown Hazel into a state of panic and fear. The night before, she and her kids had baked cookies, enjoyed them, and taken their baths before bedtime.
The calmness of the house that night had been shattered by Liam’s frightened shriek while he shook Hazel awake. “Mama, Daisy’s not breathing!” he had yelled, tears streaming down
Hazel had jumped out of bed and sprung into action, rushing Daisy to the hospital immediately. “Her heart had slowed down,” the doctor explained to Hazel afterward. Daisy’s attacks and seizures were unpredictable, demanding constant attention.
After each episode, Daisy would weakly clutch her mother’s dress with her small hands, and Hazel’s heart would shatter at the sight of her frail daughter, wishing for her to grow up quickly and undergo the surgery that might save her life–a surgery both expensive and high–risk.
Daisy had remained at the hospital for the rest of the week, with Hazel and her son allowed to visit her regularly, their love and hope unwavering.
“Come on, Tiger,” Hazel said, extending her hand to her son. “Let’s go see your sister.”
“Yeahhhh,” Liam squealed, doing a small happy dance. He adored and was fiercely protective of his younger sister. While she slept, most times, he would sneak into her room
multiple times to ensure she was still breathing, and his presence offered Hazel a comforting sense of security. He was always watching over her.
Hazel, hand in hand with her son, descended the apartment stairs side by side, a mother–son pair with an unbreakable bond. On their way to the hospital, people couldn’t help but steal glances at them. Hazel’s face radiated a quiet beauty, and the adorable little boy she held received compliments for his striking hair and adorable chubby face.
Upon entering the hospital, the unmistakable scent of antiseptics wafted through the air, causing both mother and son to wrinkle their noses in unison.
“I don’t like this smell, Mummy,” Liam remarked as they proceeded straight to the children’s. ward.
Hazel shared Liam’s sentiment; she loathed the hospital environment. Nevertheless, it had become an all–too–familiar place for them; it was practically their second home.
Liam, a child wise beyond his years, empathized with his sister’s dislike for the hospital. “Daisy hates it too. It stinks,” he added with a somber nod.
Inside the elevator, Liam confidently pressed the button for the sixth floor. His familiarity with the hospital layout was remarkable for his age. Seeing his mother squatting down to his height, he met her gaze with determination.
“Listen, Honey, very soon your sister will have the surgery, and she’ll be all better. She won’t have to stay in hospitals any longer; she’ll come home with us.”
Liam’s innocent optimism surfaced again, as he suggested, “Well, then let’s get the surgery today so she can come home with us tomorrow!
Hazel chuckled gently, recognizing the purity of Liam’s wish. “Oh, Liam, it doesn’t work that way.” The elevator chimed and opened, revealing the sixth floor. The mother and son stepped out, headed for the children’s section where Daisy always stayed.
“Daisy!” Liam squealed with delight, racing over to hug his sister gently. “I missed you. Mummy didn’t let me come yesterday. She made me go to school.”
Hazel giggled affectionately, her heart warmed by the sibling love on display. She leaned over to place a tender kiss on her daughter’s head. Daisy, however, looked even frailer and paler than before, a painful reminder of her ongoing struggles.
Liam sprang into action, determined to brighten Daisy’s day. His playful antics brought a weak smile to her lips, and they engaged in a fragile exchange of joy. Hazel couldn’t help but notice how pale and fragile Daisy appeared, her heart aching at the sight.
The separation between Liam and Daisy was a necessary precaution; the excitement from their playful interactions had proven too taxing on Daisy’s fragile heart.
“Oh, good you’re here. A word?” A doctor approached Hazel, diverting her attention. He affectionately ruffled Liam’s hair before they both stepped out of the ward to converse.
The doctor’s tone grew serious as he shared concerning news. “She had a seizure last night. Listen, Hazel, we may not have the experience or expertise for such a delicate surgery. However, there’s been a recent breakthrough a groundbreaking surgery conducted in another hospital. I recommend that you meet with the doctors there, discuss Daisy’s case, and seek their expert opinion. It’s possible she might undergo the surgery earlier than originally planned.”
Hazel listened with rapt attention, hope blossoming in her heart. The doctor’s words offered a glimmer of light in their otherwise challenging journey. “We’ll support you as much as we can,” he assured her, a comforting smile on his face.
Tears of gratitude welled up in Hazel’s eyes. “Thank you, thank you very much, Doctor.” “You’re welcome. I’ll write a recommendation and send a request to the hospital in Los Angeles,” the doctor informed her.
“Los Angeles?” Hazel faltered, her smile gradually fading.
“Yes, there’s a doctor there who specializes in children’s surgeries with minimal risks. He’s the best fit for Daisy’s case.”
Hazel nodded slowly, absorbing the information. “Alright then. I’ll await your instructions,” she replied as the doctor walked away.
Hazel turned her gaze back to her daughter, her fragile form lying on the hospital bed. There was hope, but it was located in Los Angeles–the same city where Ethan, the twins‘ father, resided. Hazel felt her strength waver, and she leaned against the wall for support. They would be returning to a place she wasn’t yet prepared to face, but Daisy’s life depended on it. “Daisy, Liam, we’re going home,” she whispered to herself, steeling her resolve for the challenges that lay ahead.