My Baptism(s)



 

I don't write about religion for my own reasons, but this time I could not avoid it. I have not written about Children's Hospital Los Angeles very much lately, but it is an extremely important part of this post.

The title of this blog is correct. I did have two baptisms. Let me explain...

Yesterday was the Feast of the Baptism of Jesus. The story was told and the priest talked about remembering her own baptism. She said she doesn't remember it because she was only a one-year old. She does have her own memory of it because of the stories that have been told.
St. Peter's Episcopal Church, Charlotte, North Carolina

I have always had a "memory" of my own baptism, but started to wonder if it was true. I finally asked my Dad to verify that what I remember from what I thought I had been told was true. He emailed back and said, "Yes."

For those of you who don't remember, or haven't heard the story, my diagnosis of Salt Wasting Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia began when my parents took me to CHLA around 14 or 15 days after my birth in 1968. My chances of survival were extremely low. For this reason, a variety of religious sacraments were administered. One of those was baptism. There in the hospital that was working to save my life I was baptized. I can only imagine what this all looked like, both extremely sad and kind of crazed.

Obviously, I did survive...and quite well if I say so myself! After I left the hospital and recovered, I had a "second" baptism. A formal, ceremonially baptism with the gown, family and I am sure some bells and smells was held at St. Luke the Evangelist Catholic Church in Temple City, California.

If it were not for amazing doctors at CHLA I would not be here to tell this story. I would not be able to push my body to the limits of what any "normal" person can do while participating in marathons and triathlons. Doctors like Dr. Mitchell Geffner and Mimi Kim continue the work at CHLA. Hopefully, with improved medical care by these doctors and many others, there aren't many first baptisms held in hospitals for Warriors with CAH and Adrenal Insufficiency!

A cool part of running BHM 26.2 in Birmingham is that it supports Children's (Hospital) of Alabama. Hopefully, I will have the time to tour the hospital and see the endocrinology department!

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