Every Breath She Takes

By Michelle Malkin

Michelle Malkin
Michelle Malkin

Los Angeles, CA – -(Ammoland.com)- Fifteen years ago this week, my beautiful daughter Veronica entered the world. She didn't make a sound. As I stretched out my arms to hold her in the delivery room, furrow-browed doctors and nurses instead whisked her away. I shouted after them in panic:

“Is she all right? Is she going to be OK?!”

Slightly underweight and jaundiced, she remained in the hospital for several days before we got the all-clear. My husband and I counted our blessings. But it wouldn't be the last time we felt the pangs of parental helplessness when it came to her health.

Here's the good news: In the blink of an eye, our shy, clingy little girl blossomed into a wry, wisecracking and independent young lady. She loves to go fishing, hates shallow people, solves a Rubik's Cube in 35 seconds, prefers true-crime novels to “Twilight” schlock and recently developed a thing for ice hockey players. Veronica's a wicked Photoshopper, a talented drawer, a makeup artist and (unlike mom) a math whiz. Until six weeks ago, her main obsessions were “Grey's Anatomy,” the Stanley Cup, Instagram, her new cartilage piercing, an actor named Evan Peters and the hope of getting a learner's permit.

Just before Mother's Day weekend, however, she started having what appeared to be respiratory trouble. She “couldn't get a good breath” and began gently gasping and sighing for air every few minutes. Two trips to the ER later, she had been administered ibuprofen for “costochondritis” and then albuterol to open up her airways.

The problem is that all the various tests and exams indicate she's getting plenty of oxygen. Her lungs, heart and vocal cords are all “normal,” and yet she describes a chronic feeling that she's “drowning.” Every day begins with gasping beyond her control, multiple times a minute, nonstop, every hour of every day, until she reaches a point of exhaustion at 1 or 2 in the morning.

After a brief respite while sleeping, the day-mare starts all over again.

Despite taking an alphabet soup of potent neuro-related meds for tics and Tourette's, Veronica's condition has steadily deteriorated. The force and frequency of the gasping — now with loud stridor on both the inhale and exhale — keep her in bed most of the day. She has choked on food and drink several times; aspiration is a constant risk.

It has been agonizing to watch her suffer while waiting weeks and months on end to see an increasingly short supply of specialists. It is more agonizing knowing that, despite obtaining the best care possible for her, we still don't really know what's going on. “Dr. Google,” though much maligned, has helped connect us to compassionate patient advocacy groups and websites for other perplexed parents with children suffering chronic mystery ailments. The awareness of not being alone is profoundly comforting. But we don't know how long the winding trail of diagnoses and trial-and-error prescriptions will go on.

On her birthday week, I'm overwhelmed at the strength and grace that my fierce first-born child has shown. My husband and I named her after St. Veronica, a woman who displayed great courage in the face of adversity when she stepped forward from a jeering mob to comfort Jesus on the road to Calvary. Over the past month and a half, our teenage daughter has shown more resilience worthy of her namesake than I have witnessed in most adults. She is my hero.

Through it all, Veronica has not cried or raged or lost her will. Not once. I confess that I can't say the same, though I put on a good game face for work and public functions. With every labored breath she takes, every minute, every hour of the day, the same waking, aching thoughts echo without relief or resolution:

“Is she all right? Is she going to be OK?!”

About: Michelle Malkin
Michelle Malkin is the author of “Culture of Corruption: Obama and his Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks and Cronies” & “Unhinged: Exposing Liberals Gone Wild”. Her e-mail address is [email protected]

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wc
wc
4 years ago

Something similar happened to me, it was much milder though. It turned out to be an adverse reaction to fluoride in drinking water, toothpaste, pesticides, etc. After I stopped ingesting (or even using) fluoride in any form and detoxed my body from it the symptoms went away.

diamondearthday57
diamondearthday57
5 years ago

As I read this I think I should be more like Veronica. Maybe we all should as we gripe and whine about the silliest things.
Thank you Michelle for sharing this with us, we know you did not have to. We know you have people constantly nipping at your heels for your convictions.
But I never know what is going to bring me back to reality and this about your daughter does indeed accomplish this. God bless you and Veronica. Thank you, Prayers, Hopes and Wishes sent.

Jim G.
Jim G.
5 years ago

Michelle :
Our prayers for Veronica will be ongoing until you post that her miracle has been received. I cannot imagine what you and your husband must be feeling, God is there with the two of you also, lean on him and he will bring comfort. May He bless you all with immeasurable strength to get through this.

Charlie
Charlie
5 years ago

I don’t quite know what to say. All the best wishes and prayers are what we offer when there is nothing that we can do to help. Add me to that list of people that care about you and your family. I hope that you find a specialist that can help your daughter.

John D
John D
5 years ago

My family will be praying. There has been a near epidemic of unexplained respiratory ailments in recent years. From what I understand, these cases continue to increase. The cause is becoming apparent, however. You might want to talk to Dane Wiggington and Michael Murphy. Either man might be able to shed some light on your current difficulties.

Michael
Michael
5 years ago

I am praying, too. In addition to prayer, Michelle, does your family know about EFT? Even when all else fails, sometimes, EFT can help.

Ken R
Ken R
5 years ago

Michelle,
First off, everyone says “our prayers are with you” and there is a cumulative effect of prayers. May your family find support and solace in knowing many are praying for you, your husband and daughter. Having watched a family member suffer COPD, it is a helpless feeling. Your daughter Veronica has your resolve and togeher you all will find the right specialist. God bless you all.

Bob & Crys
Bob & Crys
5 years ago

We’re praying for your whole family, and wishing you the perfect peace of Phil 4:6-9!

james
james
5 years ago

i am praying for your veronica

John Mychaluk
John Mychaluk
5 years ago

Dear Michelle, my heart goes out to you and your lovely daughter. Many heartfelt prayers for her quick recovery.

Jim Reynolds
Jim Reynolds
5 years ago

Michelle,
I will be praying not only for your daughter but for you and your husband also. I have breathing problems but nothing as severe as your Veronica. I know the great physician and I think your family does too. God bless all of you.

Larry Stout
Larry Stout
5 years ago

My prayers are with your daughter and family. God bless

Cal
Cal
5 years ago

I am touched by the trials of your daughter. My wife and I will be praying until you announce she is well.

Bill Martiny
Bill Martiny
5 years ago

Prayers said for your daughter and the entire family.

Maria Tsihlis
Maria Tsihlis
5 years ago
Reply to  Bill Martiny

I will pray to Jesus Christ that courageous Veronica’s good health returns. And, in church, I will light a candle and pray that Veronica’s future birthdays will enjoyed in good health.