Rodolfo "Rudy" Lewis Chabolla was born on Jan 21 1988. What a joy he was......his older sister Rhianna was 11 ½ months and was totally amazed by this new baby we brought home, and somewhat curious and jealous! When Rudy was born he was small at 5-lbs. 7 oz and somewhat weak. The Dr.s told us that his blood sugar was low and he was what they called Failure to Thrive. Despite this we were discharged home the next day. Rudy' first month of life was normal and uneventful. Then one day when he was just over a month old he started getting sick. His symptoms were that of a stomach virus. He was unable to keep anything down, had severe projectile vomiting, high fever, and constant crying and had not urinated in hours.
On the advice of his Dr I took him to the Emergency Room. He had a battery of tests done and was eventually admitted to the hospital with a working diagnosis of Severe Gastroenteritis. After 4 days in the hospital he seemed to be better and was sent home. The following week was uneventful. Just when I thought he was getting better what happened next was the start of a nightmare. Rudy was lying on the living room floor on his blanket and all of a sudden he started gasping and turned blue. When I got to him he was not breathing. Every parents nightmare came true..........my baby was not breathing and I had to start CPR. After I got him breathing and called 911 he was taken to the Hospital where he was transferred to the University of Davis Medical Center.
There he was diagnosed with a feeding disorder and put on special formula. Once home he never seemed to be over all of this. Over the next few weeks he went into cardiopulmonary arrest 2 more times and was transferred to Childrens Hospital in Oakland California and we were no closer to knowing what was happening. There he was diagnosed with a seizure disorder and a rare glycogen Storage disease called Methylmelonicaciduria. He would have to stay on anti-seizure meds, drink special formula made by a dietitian, and receive b12 injections.
In Early August he had been home from the hospital for about 4 days after another bad attack and seemed to be doing ok on his treatment regimen. I remember how happy I was when I finally got to give him some baby food for the first time. Oh how he loved the bananas! That same day as he was napping I heard his apnea alarm go off...as I approached his room I saw that he was blue and not breathing. As I started CPR I hollered for the gardener to call 911........When the ambulance arrived I knew that this was the last time I would hold him.There was something different about that day, something different about Rudy. He was more at peace. AT the Hospital they continued working on him for almost an hour. I remember as though it was yesterday the Nurse coming out and asking me what I wanted. I wanted to scream............I wanted my baby back. The mother in me wanted them to keep working, the healthcare worker in me knew that he was already gone.
We buried Rudy on August 12, 1988. During the 6 ½ months of his life he was always so brave, hardly ever crying, not even during one painful test after another. I always felt as though he was doing it for me, his way of letting me know that he was ok. It's been almost 15 years and not a day goes by that I don't think about him. About the young man he would have grown into. He brought our family so much joy during the 6 ½ months he was here.........and now his memory provides
me with a lifetime of happiness.