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Posted on May 01 2015
It was so scary. I didn’t understand why she was hurting me.
Her attack left me with a complex skull fracture, six rib fractures, retinal hemorrhages, and chronic subdural hematoma. In other words, in addition to my tiny ribs and skull being fractured, I had bleeding behind my eyes and around my brain.
All because I was crying and my caregiver became frustrated.
I was only a baby so I couldn’t tell my mom and dad what was happening when they dropped my sister and I off each day. They were just doing their best to support our family. They thought they could trust my aunt to care for me.
For six weeks I suffered in silence and got even sicker. My parents kept taking me to different doctors, but I couldn’t tell them what was wrong either.
They didn’t see why I was really suffering.
Eventually even eating became painful for me. Every time I tried to suck my bottle my head hurt. I couldn’t tell anyone how much pain I was in.
When I could eat I would just throw up.
As the weeks went on I couldn’t sleep comfortably anymore because the longer I was lying down the more the pressure built in my little head; I was in so much pain.
My mom and dad made me so happy; sometimes I could still smile for them and be my old self.
Finally my mom found a doctor that would listen to her. Suddenly I was in machines and stuck in a bed. My mom and dad were so sad; they couldn’t believe my caregiver, my own aunt, would hurt me. I remember mom crying as she had to leave me on the operating room bed. I was so scared as I watched her walk away. But she was the first face I saw when I woke up.
I hated being with the doctors; I couldn’t even leave my bed because of the tubes I had attached to my head.
I was so happy when my mom and dad got to hold me again; it had been so long since I could be comfortable in their arms. Finally I felt better and eventually I got to go home.
Now my parents tell everyone they meet about shaken baby syndrome. My mom says she didn’t know the signs and she wants to make sure other moms do. She wants to help make sure other babies don’t suffer like I did. She started something called a non-profit and named it Lola's Hope.
My name is Lola. I am four years old now and I am a survivor.