The Andretti Legacy (93)
Published Mar 1, 2010

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The Andretti Legacy
Chapter 93

The Andretti Legacy
Chapter 93
"...this is it, Logan." Lizzi sighs proudly. "We're going to be a family...I can't believe it." He wraps his arms around her waist.

"I never imagined you and I would be standing right here like this...I mean, we met on the internet...and now look where we are...married with a baby on the way." He smiles happily back. This is what he always wanted: a family, a normal life.
"You might find this hard to believe, I know that you doubt me...but, this right here...this is the happiest I've ever been." She stares back at him with a smile from her heart.

"I know." Logan whispers as a few people exit the hospital behind them. "I've never seen that smile before."
... Each and every day, Logan and Lizzi spent time talking to their unborn baby. They read pregnancy books together, they takes classes on parenting, they even spend time at the hospital for testing and such. Together, they are determined to be the best parents and provide the absolute best life they can for their baby. One morning, Logan listens to Lizzi's baby bump.

"I don't hear anything. Baby Andretti must be sleeping." He jokes and laughs aloud. He realizes Lizzi didn't laugh with him, and he looks up and finds an odd expression on her face.
"Lizzi? What's wrong?" Logan takes a step closer to her. His immediate thought is that something happened to the baby, and she neglected to tell him.

"...I am...well, I'm scared, Logan." Lizzi sighs softly as she stares across the room, avoiding eye contact.
"Scared?" He chokes on his own breath. "Lizzi, we'll be fine. We're going to be great don't have to be scared." He reaches forward and takes her hands in his. "It's not that, Logan." She quietly exhales. He stares back waiting for an answer. "I am worried about the baby...I mean, you aren't exactly entirely human...and...well, I just keep thinking of your parents..."

Logan's heart drops.
"...we'll be fine, Lizzi. I promise." He assures her in attempt to comfort her; his words send chills up his own spine. The thought had never crossed his mind, and it terrifies him. Later that day, Logan heads out grocery shopping and can't shake the thoughts Lizzi instilled in him earlier. Had he traded his life for their baby? What if something happened to the baby due to certain circumstances? He opts to search the bookstore for some type of guidance, he has no where else to turn. And, within a few hours, Logan finds the bookstore to be useless. He plays with the idea of going to the cemetery in search of answers, but the thought of what might happen there worries him more than trading his life for their child. Just as Logan was leaving the bookstore, his cell phone rings. It's Lizzi.

She tells him that something isn't right, and she had called an ambulance. She instructed him to meet her at the hospital. He did just that, all the most terrible thoughts flooding his brain.
Lizzi remains in the hospital for weeks. Logan stays by her side faithfully. There are complications with the pregnancy, and the baby's life is in grave danger. Doctor's are baffled, and to avoid being accused of insanity, the couple keep Logan's history private. They play dumb, and hope for the best.

The baby was passing strange signals, and for it's age, was not appearing on any ultrasound when it should. Lizzi was growing weaker and looking more and more unhealthy. She's fights a strong fight, and hangs on as best she can.
Lizzi and the baby are finally released from the hospital 12 weeks after birth. She's still weak and ill, but the baby is strong and healthy. Lizzi heads straight for bed upon returning home, while Logan and baby Mindy relax in the living room. After a few hours of watching television, Logan feeds her and puts her in the nursery. He heads out to grab a glass of water. He returns to the nursery to find Lizzi watching over her daughter.

"She's beautiful, Logan." Lizzi replies softly. "She really, really is..."

"She's amazing." Logan agrees as he crosses the room to stand next to her.
He grabs Lizzi's arm, pulls her to him, and turns her around.

"How are you feeling?" He asks quietly noticing Mindy drifting off to sleep.

"...I'm still weak, but now that I am home...I feel much better." She smiles softly and he kisses her.
Early the next morning, Lizzi wakes due to Mindy's crying. She heads for the nursery and comforts the small baby. She sings a soft lullaby to her as she heads for the kitchen to feed her. After Mindy has finished her bottle, Lizzi holds her out in front of her. She stares at the wide-eyed baby. Lizzi smiles proudly, and Mindy smiles back melting Lizzi's heart. She adores Mindy. The months passed quickly, and Mindy aged into a happy and healthy toddler. Logan began teaching her to walk just as soon as she could stand on her own. In fact, each and every afternoon, Logan takes her outside to practice.

"Come on, Mindy. You can do it." He tells her; she stands before him, trying to figure out what he wants her to do. "Come here, princess." He smiles at her.
Slowly, she toddles across the lawn to him as Lizzi steps out onto the front walkway. "Aw, look at her. She's growing so fast." Lizzi states proudly. "Soon she'll be a walking and talking machine." She giggles.

Logan smiles back at his wife, and takes a few steps and places Mindy on the grass before him again. He steps back and motions for her to come.
Mindy plops down and looks back at him.

" know, I've been trying to teach her a few words...simple words...she's, well...I'm worried about her. She's just not catching on." Logan replies quietly.

"She's still just a baby, Logan." Lizzi assures him. "She'll learn. We just need to give her time." She blows him a kiss, and heads back inside the house to finish up the laundry.
Logan steps forward and picks Mindy up. He stares into her eyes with concern.

"I hope so..." He whispers quietly to himself, and carries her inside with him.
Lizzi often plays with Mindy and her toys, and like Logan, she's noticed something strange about Mindy. It's hard to put words to, and it's even harder to accept for Lizzi. Something is wrong with her baby girl, and she refuses to acknowledge it. Each and every time she looks into Mindy's eyes she notices an emptiness of sorts. Almost as though Mindy's thought processes aren't as advanced or aged as the body they are in. She doesn't catch onto things as quickly as other babies, and she's not a very social child. She is perfectly content in her own little world. This side of bedtime, Lizzi finally decides to bring up Mindy's oddness. She opens her mouth to speak, but can't get the words out.

"What's wrong? I can tell something is bothering you..." Logan asks as he looks at her reflection in the mirror as he gets ready for bed.

"Logan...I...I agree with you." She replies sadly.
"About?" He turns to face her, noticing her sadness.

"Mindy." She replies flatly. "Something isn't right..." Lizzi's eyes fill up with tears, and she buries her head in her hands as she begins to cry.
"Lizzi, don't cry." Logan crosses the room to console her. He takes her hands from her face and holds them in front of him. "We don't know that something's physically wrong with her. Like you said, she may just be a slow learner. But, we will take her to the doctor for an evaluation. If something is, in fact, wrong with her...I want to nip it before it gets out of hand." Logan squeezes her hands gently. "Now, stop crying..." He whispers quietly as he hugs her. "Let's go to bed." Lizzi and Logan make the first available appointment with Mindy's doctor and anxiously arrive 30 minutes early. He sits the new parents down and listens to their story, and then he evaluates Mindy. He notices the 'emptiness' they describe, and diagnoses the baby with a rare brain disorder.

He explains to them that she isn't fit for public school and will need to be home schooled. He also tells them that she will likely not be able to fend for herself in the real word. He described her disorder as the brain not developing as it should during the pregnancy and that it could be due to the complications she was having. He advises them to further her education as best they can, and to stimulate her every way possible. There is a chance that her brain will catch up/correct itself, but he made no promises.

The blow is a hard one to the Andretti's, but they are more than willing to accommodate to their daughter's condition and have high hopes that she will learn and overcome this obstacle in her life.
As Mindy grew, she seemed to defy the odds. Everything the doctor had described about her condition was proving to be inaccurate. Mindy took to reading very quickly and she retained knowledge well. She had a passion for reading, and always chose the biggest books from the bookshelf.

However, she proved to be a very quiet child. It wasn't that she was shy but more like she couldn't communicate properly. She would speak to her parents, but become frustrated when they couldn't understand her.

Lizzi and Logan contemplate taking their little girl to a different doctor for a second opinion. Their first thought was that she may be deaf. They tested their theories, and determined she had no trouble hearing her surroundings. After deciding against deafness, they opt to take her in for another evaluation.
Early one Sunday morning over breakfast, Logan leans over to Lizzi and clears his throat.

"Do you think we should tell her, Lizzi?" Logan asks quietly, as Lizzi's expression changes from neutral to broken.

"...Logan, don't bring this up now." Lizzi looks over at him with sympathy. She rises from her seat, and takes her empty bowl to the sink.
"...wut, Da-dee?" Mindy's sweet little voice pipes up as she stares at him over her breakfast. "Sumfim" She squeezes her eyes tight while trying to get the words out.

"Nothing's wrong, honey." Logan replies to save her the struggle. "Mommy and I...we are going to take you to a doctor." He lowers his voice, wondering what's wrong with her.
"I...sick?" She asks quietly with an odd expression on her face. Lizzi turns quickly to face the family seated at the table. Baffled at how the young girl understands everything that is said, but still talks like a toddler, Lizzi cross the kitchen to the table.

"Honey, do you know what doctor's do?" Lizzi looks down at her baby girl, her princess.

"Vey...hep...uhm...hep..." Mindy squeezes her eyes tight again in concentration. "Hep meh tok?" Lizzi places her hand on Logan's shoulder and squeezes it. Together, they study their little girl, in awe but also in desperation.
Three days later, they unload from a taxi onto the sidewalk in front of a pediatrician's office. Logan is so nervous he could vomit, and Lizzi is determined to find an answer. Something is wrong with her baby, and she won't stop until she's cured.

"Logan, if you can wait in the waiting room." Lizzi smiles softly at her obviously anxious husband.

"No, no. I'll come in. I just...well, I'm scared." He replies quietly as he looks down at Mindy.

"I am, Da-dee." Mindy agrees.
"Mindy, they're not going to hurt you." Lizzi comforts her baby. "They're just going to talk to you...try to help you."

"Tocking...hurt." Mindy looks down in shame.

"It hurts?" Logan speaks out feeling confused.

"...I not do right...hurt to try...head hurts." Mindy replies, and Lizzi looks over at Logan; her heart breaking.

"Come on, Honey." Lizzi takes Mindy's hand and leads her inside.
The doctor could find nothing wrong with Mindy, other than her speech. He ran written tests, verbal tests, and even did some brain scans. He was surprised that she had overcome the diagnosis she was given just a few years ago. He explained to the parents that he was indeed, baffled, but that he wasn't going to give up. He advised them to start on the easy and simple first and work their way up to the ladder. They agreed with this, and the doctor prescribed speech classes. for Mindy. He gave them a business card for a tutor, and sent them on their way.

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18 Comment(s) so far

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#9mini me3393Mar 3, 2010

Aww, Mindy is positively adorable. I hope that they figure out what's wrong and that she can finally speak without being frustrated. And we all know that she needs a brother to continue the legacy. :3 Wonderful update!

#10girlzesbMar 4, 2010

POOR POOR  mindy. i hope she gets better.\:rah\: \:wub\: \:puke\: \:mad\: \:eek\: \:confused\: \:ph34r\: \:wacko\: \:puke\: \;\) \:P \:cool\: \:rolleyes: \:\) \:\( \:o \:D

#11xxheartlessxx12Mar 4, 2010

Awww, I hope Mindy feels better! 5.0

#12babygirl15526Mar 4, 2010

Wow lovely part. Why did their only child had to come out with complications. that is truely heartbreaking. Hopefully they can find out what is wrong with her and get help. I am now waiting in anticipation along with the Andretti family. \:wub\: \:rah\:

#13martoeleMar 4, 2010

A great chapter! I truely hope, that the problems with the speech will be over soon! 5.0 \:rah\:

#14candy820Mar 5, 2010

Awesome as always!!\:D  Hope Minday get well soon.\;\)  5.0 as always

#15Blacky1208Mar 5, 2010

Great story! Can't wait for the next chapter! \;\)

#16IllandryaMar 6, 2010

I sympathise with Mindy and her parents; many of my male cousins, one of my brothers and one of my nephews have all needed therapy to help them communicate ... it is frustrating and heartbreaking for everyone in the family, especially when you know that behind the speech problems is a brain that is more than capable. I love the way you have dealt with it in the story and will go and read the next chapter right away!

#17Ben72006Mar 7, 2010

This is really good

#18bbchris6911Mar 9, 2010

kool story!

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