My Little Girl
The focus of this newsletter is Sue Ellen Dickinson. Sue Ellen was in the final, and terminal stage, of MS when she was introduced to the Baseline of Health®. It turned her life around. From that point on, Sue Ellen made it her mission to share the Baseline of Health® with everyone who needed it. The following story is a result of that sharing.
Annie Maddox writes of her daughter, Paige:
When Paige was two years old, she started having urinary tract infections which made her very sick. I took her to Dr. Warren here in Dexter. He sent us to Dr. Aldridge in Poplar Bluff who is a urologist. After examination, he said her bladder was too small so he enlarged it. This was the first surgery she had where they stretched the bladder with a balloon-type device to make it bigger. But this didn't help, in fact it made her get even more UTI's (urinary tract infections) and kidney infections.
From there we were sent to Dr. Hill and Dr. Thompson in Cape Girardeau, Missouri since she wasn't getting better, in fact, she was getting worse and developing very serious life threatening infections. Paige would encounter many such infections like these over the coming years including Enterococcus, Staphylococcus saprophyticus, and E. coli just to name three of the worse ones.
They started her on antibiotics and she was in the hospital for two weeks. After a lot of tests, they couldn't find out what was wrong with my daughter so they sent her to St. Louis Children's Hospital. The doctor there said she would grow of it and sent us home.
But as time went on things only got worse for Paige. She became very ill and we took her to Cardinal Glennon Hospital in St. Louis where they placed a PIC line in her arm for the IV antibiotics to flow into her body because by this time she had become allergic to any antibiotics by mouth.
This PIC line was inserted in the main artery of her arm and went all the way up inside her chest just three inches from her heart. For two years Paige wore this PIC line until it used up the veins in both arms when they finally collapsed.
After that happened, they surgically implanted an IV port (which looks like a small metal box) that was inserted under her sternum inside her chest that connects to the same artery that leads to her heart. This way they could still pump antibiotics directly into her body.
And because the doctor discovered that her bladder did not empty all the way, they had to catheterize her which was the only way Paige could urinate.
By the time she was in the first grade, Paige was catheterizing herself and the school nurse would help her when I couldn't be there. But she wasn't getting better. She just kept getting worse.
When she was in the third grade, we were sent to see Dr. Teague at Columbia University in Columbia, Missouri. He told us he thought he would have Paige better in six weeks, but that didn't happen. She just kept getting sicker and sicker. So Dr. Teague put in a superpubic catheter. He did this by drilling a hole into her pelvic bone and inserting a tube which connected to her bladder.
The tube then drained the urine into a bag outside her abdomen. To conceal the bag of urine during the times she was able to go to school, I put it in a backpack so she could carry it around and still look like all the other kids. And to hide the tube I covered it over with a piece of cloth with a big smiley face on it. All at the same time she had the PIC line, and then the IV port pumping antibiotics into her body.
While still in the third grade, they did surgery again and moved the superpubic catheter from the lower part of her abdomen to the upper part of her abdomen, just below her belly button. They did this because they thought it would help slow down her infections. But even so, Paige just kept getting worse.
Then when she was in the fourth grade, Dr. Teague did a full urostomy on Paige. A urostomy, in this case, meant they would bypass the bladder by disconnecting it from the kidneys and connecting the urethras from the kidneys to part of her small intestine. Paige wore a bag on the outside of her body that collected her urine. Needless to say, by now she was so desperately ill and weak that she had to have school at home and the teachers would come to the house for her.
At this time there was no hope that she could ever have a normal life. She only dreamed of playing, going swimming and enjoying normal childhood activities with her friends. One thing Paige really wanted to do was to attend church camp in the summer, but now that seemed impossible.
In March of 1999 Dr. Teague and Paige's case worker arranged for Paige and me to take a trip to Disney World in Florida. They did this through Make A Wish Foundation. This is a foundation that grants the last wishes of critically ill and dying children.
Through all this terrible illness and suffering, Paige never complained and kept a positive attitude and always had a smile on her face. In spite of all that had happened to her she refused to let anything get her down.
Then the summer of 2000, before her sixth grade in school, Dr. Teague performed more surgery and reversed her urostomy and told us there was nothing left for them to do and that Paige's life was now in God's Hands. If she kept getting these life-threatening infections, she would die.
The doctors basically gave up, and now Paige and I were starting to give up. Then a good friend of mine, Brenda Sadler, told us about the Healing America products. She introduced us to her brother-in-law Kevin Sadler who was a member. Healing America sounded like it was the answer to our prayers. But with my money situation I could not afford to start Paige on the products she would need.
Kevin told us to hold on and not give up. He would talk to some people and see if he could find someone who would sponsor Paige. In February of 2002 I got a phone call from Sue Ellen and she said she would have the products we needed sent to Paige.
Paige has been infection free for five months now. I believe this is because of the Baseline of Health®. And for the first time in her life, she is living like a normal child. This year she got to go to school the last day it was in session, and for the very first time she attended church camp this summer.
She is now able to be a normal 14-year-old girl, spending the night with her friends, walking, running, playing and having the time of her life! Paige finally got to go swimming this summer and for the very first time, swam in a river, something she's always wanted to do. And even though she's covered with thick, heavy scars from all the surgeries, she insists on wearing a bikini. She doesn't care how it looks to other people or what they may think. She is alive and vibrant now with a zest for life and an undying spirit.
Since taking the products, Paige has gone from a size one to size five. She has gained weight going from 85 lbs. To 105 lbs, and has even grown some. She now stands four feet and eleven inches tall.
For 12 years she has been so desperately sick with infections and 17 surgeries in all that she could only dream of living the life she has found now. The doctors and health care professionals don't know what to say. They are stunned and in shock at her miraculous recovery. And even though she still wears the IV port, they say they will remove it after she has been infection free for one year.
My daughter's life has been given back to her and I thank God every single day for keeping His Hands upon her and for the people of Healing America, my friend Brenda, Kevin who introduced me to Sue Ellen and for the products that have kept my daughter alive and given her a normal life.
Paige is looking forward to her new life and knows she has a chance to live and grow up to be a healthy woman and live normally for the rest of her life. She has set goals for her future. The most important one is to grow up to become a nurse, a pediatric RN. She wants to take care of critically ill and dying children who are just like she was, and offer them hope. She wants to give them the same chance at life she was given and to share hope for the future.
Thank you or saving my little girl's life.
Thank you all so very much for what you have done.
God Bless you.
Annie Maddox, Dexter, MO