Miracle Infant Survives

Olivia survived a horrible accident (courtesy of WHDH News)

Tell me if this sounds like a story with a happy ending.

A few weeks ago in New Boston, New Hampshire, 20-month-old Olivia Smith was playing when she slipped, fell and landed on top of a colored pencil.

The pencil went into Olivia’s eye, pierced her brain and stopped at the back of her skull. In all, about five inches worth of pencil went in.

“You’re okay,” her mother told her as she picked her up and finally saw what happened. “The pencil was coming right out of her eye only a little bit,” Susan Smith would later tell reporters.

Susan rushed Olivia to the hospital and a short time later, she was flown to Boston Children’s Hospital. A team there was able to remove the pencil without surgery.

Given these facts, only a few things could happen. First, Olivia could die during the surgery, adding yet another tragedy to America‘s ever-growing list. Second, she could survive the procedure, yet experience so much brain damage as to make a normal life unlikely. Or third, she could survive, experience no real damage and live for the rest of her life as if this had never happened.

I, for one, would expect one of the first two options to be true. Given all the negativity in the world, though, this is to be expected. But I’m happy to say that in Olivia’s case,  I would be wrong on both counts. Number three is the big winner.

Chief Dan MacDonald of the New Boston Fire Department had this to say: “No impact on the eye sight, there’s no impact to the optical nerve, or any major parts of the brain. There’s no way to plan to do something like that and have it happen.”

Home from the hospital (courtesy of SEIU Local 1984)

Fellow fireman Lieutenant Ron Riendeau was on the scene following Olivia’s accident and saw her again shortly after being discharged from the hospital: “I see her running around, playing like nothing ever happened.”

Olivia is expected to make a full recovery and if you ask me, it’s a miracle. I know I’m agnostic and I do recognize the mathematical probability of this occurring, despite it being very small and highly unlikely. It’s just that the last few years have featured so many stories of young children dying or being killed, I guess we all just kind of expect stories to end badly.

It’s nice when one ends well, though. And Olivia will always be a miracle in my book.

Posted on January 26, 2013, in Family, Perspectives and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Awww, She’s so cute, I am happy that she is okay, and not blinded, and I am happy to see that she alive, happy, and doing well. I would consider this a miracle in my book.

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