by Heidi Hudson-Bennett
I’d like to introduce you to our three children, Merrick, Hannah and Cayla. On the outside they look completely normal but their bodies are fighting a daily battle against infections.
The first few years of Merrick’s life were a constant battle and it felt as if we lived in hospital, Hannah came along and the struggle continued. When she was diagnosed with TB at 6 months our paediatrician made the diagnosis, she had a Primary Immune Deficiency. Merrick was tested too and our lives changed forever. Both children started treatment with regular Immunoglobulin Injections but the battle continued. Cayla was born and diagnosed at a few weeks old. Once again our lives took a new course. Hospitals, doctors and medication became part of our New Normal. We started Intravenous Immunoglobulin therapy which involved monthly hospital stays for infusions and various courses of prophylactic medication. Six months ago we were able to start doing sub-cutaneous Immunoglobulin treatment at home. Our normal shifted again….
Having all three children who live with an immune deficiency definitely has its challenges but each time our “normal” shifts we change our course and move on. My children are probably some of the strongest and bravest kids I know. They have come to learn that the infusions and piles of medication that they need on a daily basis are important. It enables them to get out on the hockey field, play a rugby match, sing in the choir or run around with friends. On bad days we have each other; we take it slowly and try again tomorrow.
The support of our Paediatrician, Dr Paul Sinclair, our family and friends has been invaluable. I do not completely understand why our lives have taken this course but I thank God daily that He has provided answers and access to medication so that we can live, love and share our journey.