The Natalie & Alice Fish Story

We are the Fishes. In 2011 two of our five children; Natalie and Alice were diagnosed with a rare gene disfunction called Leaky SCID (Severe Combined Immune Deficiency). Their condition is so rare that only two cases are reported in the U.S. each year. Both girls have endured much, and have spent most of their young lives in and out of hospitals due to common illnesess a healthy immune system would overcome. The required treatment for our girls is a bone marrow transplant.
Although the new marrow could mean a normal life for them, it will be a long and arduous road. This blog is to share our experience as parents and the courage of our children.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

A Broken Bone

Today the kids were decorating their rooms with some Halloween garland and such.  I remember thinking to myself, “This is great they are busy working together and having fun.  About this same time Evie needed a nap, so I laid her down then afterwards thought to myself, “Okay what should I accomplish next?”  I sat on the couch and thought about the other tasks that needed attention.   Just as I was thinking how nice it was that the children were doing so well I heard a terrible cry…the kind that cries pain.
Alice came around the corner sobbing and limping on her leg.  I wondered if maybe she sprained her ankle or something.  I held her and rubbed her leg until she fell asleep. 

I expected her to wake sometime later feeling better.  When she did wake she was crying and wouldn’t walk.  At that point I realized that she would need an x-ray.  I called Primary Children’s Hospital to verify her recent counts before taking her in. They suggested having an x-ray done somewhere close, but not to enter the ER, through the waiting room.

I called American Fork Hospital before leaving the house and shared my concerns about the exposure.  They were awesome.  I parked about 10 feet from the south entrance of the ER, the nurses met me at the car even wearing masks to protect Alice.  They thoroughly cleaned a room near the door.  The doctor was in within five minutes.  The x-ray came to us, and the results and counsel was delivered quickly.  I was so impressed.  Very well done…BRAVO!  Thankfully it was not a busy night in the ER.

When the doctor asked how she hurt her leg I had to give him the only story that I knew which came from a five year old.  According to Blair she was playing with some toys and putting water in them from the bath tub.  Some water spilled on the floor and she fell from slipping on the water.  Later Natalie and Matthew shared their versions…Natalie said, "she was flipped way into the air because of the water and then her leg came crashing hard to the tile…like bouncing.  Matthew said she was cleaning the water up with her feet.  The common factor was water. 

Anyway poor little Alice has a spiral fracture on her right Tibia bone.  A spiral fracture might indicate that her leg was planted and twisted at the time.  Most children in this type of accident may not have broken anything, however, Alice being on steroids (which weaken your bones) and having been through bone marrow transplant was highly susceptible for injury.
The nurse practitioner at Primary Children’s feels like we should increase her calcium intake.  The girls take a calcium supplement (they can’t have dairy) and now they will be taking even more.

In the next few days we will know if her leg will require a hard cast.  And how long it might need heal. 

There is always a sweet moment among dear friend (not knowing our chaos) brought some dinner yesterday for us to heat up tonight.  It couldn't have been more convenient and tasty.


Getting it wrapped and stabilized.

Alice was impressed by such a big band-aid. When they finished wrapping her leg and she stopped crying, she said, "Oh no my face is red".


  1. Alice is such a trooper! Emily broke her collar bone falling off the couch of all things onto the carpet floor! These kids see it all! We are still thinking of and praying for you!!

  2. I think they call that "adding insult to injury". Poor Sweetie.