Thursday, February 11, 2010

Rukhsanah's Little Sister



In the midst of sharing about Rukhsanah Israel, I didn’t share that another granddaughter had a birthday. Actually two of my granddaughters had birthdays within the last week. I wrote some about my granddaughter Iliana yesterday on Storehouses of Snow. I talked to her last night. Long distance grand-parenting is not that fulfilling.

The other granddaughter who had a birthday is really on my heart and mind today. We had a little family party for her the end of last month while we were in Tennessee. Hands-on face to face, even though limited, is so much nicer than long distance.


Officially, Maria Guadalupe Aren Duran, turned three on February 3rd.  I call her Maria, others in the family call her Lupe. She is named for her paternal grandmother. She is beautiful, smart and delightful. If she meets you once, she will talk about you for months. She will probably never forget you.

Maria is Rukhsanah’s sister.  She will never replace her sister. No one or nothing ever will. Her presence in the family has brought much joy. She helps to heal some of the pain. On long dreary days in South Dakota my days is brightened by hearing her voice on the phone.

Hi Nana
I love you Nana
Come see me Nana

This is followed by long stories of what she has been doing, seeing and questions about Grandpa or one of her Aunts.  Best are her tight hugs and kisses when I see her.

On her third birthday, she went to the doctor. Maria has a liver disease. Maria has Hepatitis C. Maria spent her birthday being poked, prodded and stuck.

Vials of blood were drawn to check her viral load levels.  I am sure she cried a lot. When I next see her, she’ll tell me all about it with the greatest of detail.

The news was not good. She is now old enough for treatment. Something we have known and dreaded for a while. Yet, we have hoped and prayed. Many have prayed. Many are still praying.

Her viral load was high. She has been sick the last two days. Suspected is her high viral load. No one knows for sure but we know she has been very sick.


So little and so sick – a combination that breaks ones heart. She’ll be having a liver biopsy soon. So today I am thinking about another granddaughter. One so full of life and promise who needs your prayers.

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