Not Doing Well
Mike and Carrie stared at their baby. She was not doing well at all. She was unusually lethargic and had a small fever. Carrie was panicking while Mike cooled the baby down with a wet cloth.
And that’s when Mike came to the realization that something wasn’t right.
Ever since his mother-in-law started babysitting Maxine, things weren’t as they seemed.
A Happy Family
Mike and Carrie Armstrong were a loving couple living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with their one-year-old daughter, Maxine. She was an adorable little rascal, and Mike couldn’t have asked for a better baby girl.
It was all that he ever wanted, and when Carrie announced her pregnancy, Mike hoped that it would be a little girl.
It had always been his dream to take his daughter to watch his favorite team, The Pittsburgh Steelers, play.
Enjoying Their Baby
His dream finally became a reality, and he couldn’t wait for his baby girl to grow just a little older for her to go to a football game with him.
But right now, Mike and Carrie were enjoying their one-year-old, and she was already showing so much personality.
She was a smiley, happy little girl. But that was all about to change.
Carrie was scheduled to go back to work, and now the Armstrongs needed to put baby Maxine in daycare. However, Carrie wasn’t comfortable with Maxine being around strangers just yet.
“I don’t like the idea of her being with strangers, to be honest. I think we should ask my mom to look after her.
She’s really good with her, and Max loves her grandmother,” Carrie suggested.
Couldn’t Deny It
However, Mike wasn’t very happy with the arrangement. He loved his mother-in-law, Eleanor, but he knew that sometimes she liked to meddle a little too much for his liking.
But he couldn’t deny the fact that his daughter was very happy when her grandmother came over. In the end, Mike agreed.
But he would soon regret his decision.
Eleanor, Carrie’s mother, started taking care of Maxine regularly while Carrie returned to work. At first, everything seemed fine, and Maxine continued to enjoy her time with her grandmother.
However, as the weeks went by, Mike began to notice changes in Maxine’s behavior.
She was always very tired when they got home, and Mike couldn’t really spend much time with her like he used to when he came home from work.
Maxine became increasingly lethargic, and she seemed to have lost her cheerful spirit. She no longer laughed and played as she used to.
Instead, she spent most of her time with her grandmother, sitting quietly in her lap.
Mike’s concerns grew. Something just didn’t sit right with him, and he and Carrie decided to have Maxine checked out at the pediatrician.
However, after seeing the doctor, Maxine was given the all-clear. They were told to expect her to be feeling a bit off because her teething stages were approaching.
Mike and Carrie breathed a sigh of relief.
They were thankful that there was nothing seriously wrong with their baby. But they weren’t out of the woods just yet.
Showing Signs Of Improvement, But
Maxine was showing some signs of improvement, but after two days of being giggly and upbeat, she once again fell into a state of tiredness.
Mike was very concerned for his daughter, and he couldn’t understand why she kept going back to feeling so exhausted.
He doubted that it was because of teething. It sounded more serious to him.
Voicing His Concerns
Mike voiced his concerns to Carrie, and she didn’t think that Maxine was behaving any differently.
“I think she’s alright, honestly. The doctor said that she was teething. I don’t think there’s anything else wrong with her,” she replied.
But Mike wasn’t so sure anymore. It looked like Maxine wasn’t getting any better than before, and he was on a mission to see why that was.
He Knew It Was Her
In the back of his mind, he somehow knew that Eleanor had something to do with it. Either she wasn’t putting Maxine down for her scheduled nap time, or it was something else entirely.
One way or another, he was going to get to the bottom of the issue.
He made up his mind to talk to Eleanor the moment he got home. This had gone on far too long.
Mike was skeptical because ever since Eleanor started looking after her, she wasn’t feeling well at all.
He hoped that Eleanor was treating her with the teething meds they received from the pediatrician.
But when he confronted Eleanor about Maxine’s behavior, she assured him that she was taking good care of the baby and that there was nothing to worry about.
She mentioned that she had started giving Maxine special herbal teas mixed with the juice in her sippy cup that she believed would help with the baby’s overall health.
At first, Mike was skeptical about it, but he had read that giving babies some herbal tea wouldn’t affect their health.
He decided to give Eleanor the benefit of the doubt. He couldn’t bear to see Maxine suffer, so he hoped that Eleanor’s remedy would work.
However, as days turned into weeks, Maxine’s condition didn’t improve. In fact, it seemed to be getting worse. She had lost weight, and her skin had become pale.
Her once joyful eyes were now listless, and Mike and Carrie were frantic with worry.
This couldn’t have been just teething, and the Armstrongs started weighing their options.
Carrie suggested taking Maxine to the doctor, but Eleanor vehemently opposed the idea. She insisted that her herbal remedies would heal Maxine’s health and they should give it more time.
Mike found himself torn between his loyalty to his wife and his trust in his mother-in-law. He decided to take matters into his own hands.
One day, while Eleanor was out of the house, he secretly took Maxine to the doctor.
The Doctor’s Examination
The doctor was shocked when he examined Maxine. He discovered that her weight loss and lethargy were due to severe malnutrition.
He immediately admitted her to the hospital for further evaluation and treatment.
Mike felt like his world was ending. He could have kicked himself for not doing it sooner, and now Maxine was much sicker than they could have imagined.
What Did She Do?
Mike felt like his entire world had come crashing down around him when the doctor told him the devastating news. His daughter was his entire world, and now, she was extremely ill.
He tried to make sense of it all. How could something like this just happen? He and Carrie had done everything in their power to ensure that their little girl was happy and healthy.
But then he thought about Eleanor. What on earth was she doing to his daughter when he wasn’t around?
A Confusing Situation
Mike felt awful as he sat in the hospital waiting room, knowing that his daughter had been suffering before his very eyes. How could he have let this go on for so long? He was beyond confused by the situation.
He and Carrie fed her every morning and every night. He assumed that his mother-in-law had been feeding her during the day, but now, he was questioning it.
What had she been doing to their baby?
His mind drifted to the teas Eleanor had been feeding their daughter. When he first researched them, they seemed to be safe enough, but now, he wasn’t too sure.
Was it possible that she was adding something into the mix that he didn’t know about? Maxine seemed perfectly fine and healthy before her grandmother began taking care of her.
Mike knew that he had to get to the bottom of this.
It Didn’t Make Sense
He thought back to Maxine’s strange symptoms. She was fine over the weekends when Eleanor wasn’t around, but during the week, she was exhausted and cranky. She had also randomly gotten sick a few times.
Mike didn’t know how to feel about all of it. He thought that Eleanor cared for his daughter, but now, he wasn’t so sure.
But it didn’t make sense. Why would she want to harm Maxine?
It Wasn’t Fine
Something just didn’t feel right to him. Ever since Eleanor had started babysitting, he’d felt suspicious about the older woman.
Carrie kept telling him that everything was fine, but now, things didn’t seem fine anymore.
His mother-in-law was up to something, and he was watching his little girl suffer the consequences. But what if it was all too late?
Mike couldn’t help but feel like he had betrayed his daughter. When Carrie first suggested using her mother as a babysitter, he had his doubts, and he should have insisted on daycare.
But what was truly going on when Eleanor was left alone with Maxine?
Mike thought his mother-in-law cared for the little girl, but now, he feared that something sinister was going on.
Carrie sat beside her husband in silence, conflicting feelings flooding her mind. From the look on his face, she could tell her husband was devastated.
She didn’t want to admit it aloud, but she had had the same thoughts as her husband. Although she loved her mother dearly, Maxine came first.
She knew that the problem wasn’t her, or her husband. Eleanor had to be responsible.
Carrie’s head was dizzy with concern. The doctor had taken their daughter for a bunch of tests, and all they could do now was wait.
Mike placed a gentle hand on his wife’s back, noticing the sadness in her eyes.
“Hey, everything will be alright. He’s one of the best pediatricians in the state. She’s in good hands,” Mike tried to comfort his wife and himself with those words.
“You’re right. She’ll be okay,” Carrie said in a shaky voice. She had been crying since the doctor gave them the news. “I just don’t understand how something like this could just happen. I feel like we’ve been so good,” She sighed.
“I don’t think we’re the problem,” Mike answered truthfully.
Carrie knew that he was right. But just then Maxine’s doctor appeared before them.
Mike didn’t want to lie to his wife, and he thought that his wife would only be reassured by his words. But he didn’t think much about the insinuation he was making. He often forgot that it was her mother, after all.
As soon as he had said it, he knew he shouldn’t have.
The doctor was now witnesses to a couple’s spat, and before he could say anything, tensions rose.
How Could She Do This?
It looked like Carrie was on the verge of tears at her husband’s words. She knew that they were true, but she didn’t want to believe them. Now, she was caught between the woman who raised her and her new family.
“How could she do this?” Carrie said as she put her head in her hands.
Tensions were running high as Mike tried to think of a way to defuse the situation, but the doctor couldn’t be patient any longer. He had grave news.
“I’m sorry to have to interrupt you, but it’s very important that I do,” The doctor said in a shaky voice. The couple had never seen a doctor lose his nerve. This made their hearts race. It was something to do with their child.
There was silence for a few moments until the doctor finally explained things.
But it was no news that parents wanted to hear.
A Close One
“It was a really close one,” He said as he shook his head. “You guys are really lucky that you took her in when you did instead of trying more home-brewed remedies.”
That was the first clue to justify what Mike had said. But that was the furthest thing in his mind right now.
The only question on his mind was if his daughter was okay or not.
How Is She?
The doctor started explaining the cause of her illness, but Carrie cut him short immediately.
“I don’t really care that much about how it was caused. Let’s first get to the most important thing – how is she?”
The doctor stopped in his tracks and cleared his throat, “Yes, of course. Forgive me. Let me pull up her sheet now, and I can tell you exactly how she’s feeling and what kind of state she’s in.”
Word From The Doctor
“She’s doing a little better. We’ve put a drip in her, and for the time being, she’s resting. We want to see if we can get her to gain a few pounds over the next little while,” The doctor spoke gently and kindly, knowing that Carrie and Mike were sick with worry.
Mike took a deep breath. He was just relieved that she was alright for the time being.
He couldn’t believe what was happening.
The couple felt like they were having a nightmare. Their daughter had nearly lost their life, and not even because of their own mistakes. It made Mike angry – angrier than he wanted his wife to see. He knew the situation was delicate, but he thought about Eleanor and what she had done.
Carrie was just devastated rather than angry.
She had no idea what her husband was plotting while they stood in the hospital hallway.
The couple had a big decision now. They could go home and confront Eleanor now, or they could stay in the hospital overnight. Mike wanted to go straight home and give the mother-in-law a piece of his mind, but his wife was only worried about their daughter.
Mike agreed that it was the best thing to stay with their daughter.
But that didn’t mean he wouldn’t be scheming the entire time they were there.
Mike knew that he would be in the hospital for a long time because of the state of his daughter. This gave him time to think things over. Just a few days ago, he was trying to keep a rift between his wife and mother-in-law from opening, but now he didn’t care.
It was still early days, and Eleanor had the rest of her life to pay for her mistake. This made Mike okay with not doing anything too brash.
But that didn’t mean he didn’t put a plan into action.
Mike felt like Al Capone as he wrote up plans from the hospital room and added the cell phone numbers of people he could call who were free to walk around, unlike him. From inside the hospital, he was going to make his mother-in-law pay for her discretion.
She probably thought that she was safe while he was trapped in there, but she was dead wrong.
He had a dozen ways to make her pay.
After six hours in and barely any sleep, Mike had drawn up a lot of different ways to make Eleanor pay. He told Carrie that he was working even though that was a white lie. His laptop was filled with documents, all targeting his mother-in-law.
He looked at all of the drafts, and of all the plans he could use on her, one stuck out.
It was one that didn’t resort to violence and would be completely legal.
He called the document “legal retribution” and smirked as he started putting it into motion.
He looked over at his wife, fast asleep on the hospital chair, and then over at his daughter with various machines attached to her.
He knew he wasn’t going too far. If anything, this was mercy compared to what he could have done. He was going to get her back.
They Ignored Her Calls
Mike and Carrie spent that night in the hospital, and when Eleanor called, they ignored it. Carrie couldn’t stand the thought of speaking to her mother. She was overly emotional and overwhelmed and she knew that the conversation wouldn’t go well.
They stayed up all night, waiting for more information from the doctor.
Although their daughter was in stable condition, they were still terrified.
The Following Morning
Carrie left the hospital early the next morning. After a long night of stressing about her daughter, she needed some rest. But Chris knew that he wouldn’t be able to fall asleep. All he could do was sit and stare at the wall as he waited for an update.
Now that Carrie was gone, he could do the more conspicuous part of his plan.
He pulled out his phone and browsed his contacts.
The Right Man
Mike knew that he needed the right guy to sort out his plan while he was stuck in the hospital. He had just the man for the job as he looked through his contacts. That’s when he saw the right name.
He smiled as he dialled the number and waited for an answer.
He heard a voice on the other side of the receiver and got ready for his revenge. He organized something sinster.
All Wrapped Up
After the phone call ended, his plan had been set in motion and couldn’t be taken back. He knew that the man he had called was already making the arrangements and would be getting the documents and folders together.
He didn’t have to do anything else for a bit and went back to caring for his daughter.
He knew they were taken care of.
Mike thought about how his wife would react to him doing this, but he knew that she couldn’t know yet. It was best for them if she was out of the picture, and this route would definitely do that.
Now he just had to worry about Maxine while everything else got sorted out around him.
He bided his time until his mother-in-law would get the news.
One More Night
While Carrie got to leave to go to work and go back home afterwards, Mike promised her that he would stay and wait for an update from the doctor.
One of them had to be there for their little girl and make sure she was safe.
Little Maxine slept through the entire night, and the doctor waited until the following morning to give an update.
“Maxine is doing a little better this morning. We want to keep her here for a few more days until we get her nutrition under control,” The doctor explained, and Mike was relieved by the news. “I suggest you go home to your wife and get a little rest. She will be okay,” He said.
Mike’s eyes were burning as he headed toward the exit of the hospital.
He hadn’t slept in over 36 hours, and he was feeling ill.
As he got into his car, he decided to dial Carrie’s number. He wanted to update her on their daughter’s condition.
When she answered the phone, Mike could tell that he had woken her up. “Hey honey, is everything okay?” She asked sleepily.
He gave her the good news. Their daughter was in stable condition and now, all they could do was rest and wait.
Carrie was relieved, but she still felt sick to her stomach. Waking up, she remembered who was responsible for her daughter’s sudden illness. Her heart ached at the realization.
She too felt terrible about it. She was the one who begged Mike to let her mother babysit for them. “I hope you know how sorry I am,” She told her husband over the phone, which made his heart shatter in his chest.
It was a tough situation for both of them.
The doctors worked tirelessly to stabilize Maxine’s condition, and over time, she slowly began to recover. Mike and Carrie were relieved that their daughter was on the mend, but their trust in Eleanor had been shattered.
Mike knew that Eleanor couldn’t be trusted. He didn’t want her anywhere near his daughter.
She had caused enough damage with her silly herbal concoctions.
The drama escalated when Carrie insisted on confronting her mother. A heated argument ensued, and the rift between mother and daughter deepened. Eleanor remained convinced that her herbal remedies were working and that she had done nothing wrong.
“It made Maxine sick! Stop saying that it was helping her, Mom!” Carrie yelled.
At that moment, Carrie picked up the herbs and threw them on the kitchen floor.
In the midst of the family turmoil, Mike couldn’t help but feel responsible for not intervening sooner. He was torn between his loyalty to his wife and his desire to protect Maxine.
He knew that rebuilding trust within the family would take time.
Once again, Eleanor’s meddling ways had cost them dearly. Mike was beyond furious.
As Maxine slowly but steadily regained her health in the hospital, the family drama continued to unfold. Carrie was furious with her mother, and the once-strong bond between them seemed irreparably broken. Mike was determined to ensure Eleanor faced the consequences of her actions.
With Maxine’s health and well-being at the forefront, Mike consulted with an attorney to explore their legal options.
They decided to file a case against Eleanor for child endangerment, as it was clear that her unverified herbal remedies had put Maxine’s life in jeopardy.
The legal proceedings added more strain to the already fractured family. The tension between Carrie and Eleanor escalated as they were drawn into court battles and arguments about Maxine’s future.
Mike remained resolute in his decision to protect his daughter and make sure Eleanor paid for her actions.
He was not going to let her get away with this.
Her Own Lawyers
Eleanor reached out to her own lawyers to counter-sue. She felt like they were being unreasonable by keeping her away from her only grandchild.
To her, she was only doing what she thought was best at that moment.
She never meant to harm her granddaughter, and now Carrie and Mike were treating it like she did it on purpose.
The legal battle between the Armstrongs and Eleanor became a sensational courtroom drama that attracted media attention. The family’s story was plastered across headlines, and everyone had an opinion on who was right and who was wrong.
Mike and Carrie were determined to protect Maxine from any further harm, while Eleanor maintained that she had only acted out of love and concern for her grandchild.
The courtroom battles were emotionally draining for all parties involved.
Social Media Frenzy
The story was splashed all over social media, and people began picking sides in the saga.
On the one end, many people sided with Mike and Carrie, and in their opinion, they were right to seek legal action.
“Eleanor was a danger to that child’s life. Who knows what could have happened if the father didn’t secretly take the baby to the doctor?” one post read.
The Herbal Community
On the other end, many people from the herbal treatment community sided with Eleanor, and they believed that she was just trying to help her already sick granddaughter.
“She was just using the power of nature and herbs to treat her precious granddaughter. She did nothing wrong. I don’t believe it was the herbs that made her sick.
I strongly believe that that baby had an underlying condition,” one woman said in her post.
Couldn’t Take Much More
The Armstrong family could no longer take the social media posts that people were sending to them. Some of them were in support, and others ridiculed them as parents.
Carrie couldn’t take much more of it, and it was taking a toll on her mental health.
Mike now had to not only take care of his sick daughter but also had to look out for the well-being of his wife.
A Heartbreaking Choice
Eventually, the court reached a verdict, and Eleanor was found guilty of child endangerment.
She was sentenced to probation and ordered to stay away from Maxine for a period of six months.
It was a heartbreaking choice for Carrie, who was torn between her love for her mother and her desire to protect her daughter.
Rebuilding Their Lives
The family divide deepened as Carrie chose to abide by the court’s orders to ensure Maxine’s safety. She visited Eleanor occasionally, but their relationship would never be the same again.
Mike and Carrie, determined to rebuild their lives and ensure Maxine had the best care possible, began seeking the help of experienced childcare providers.
They found a trustworthy nanny who genuinely cared for Maxine and provided the love and attention she needed to thrive.
Regaining Her Strength
Maxine slowly started to regain her strength, and her cheerful personality returned. With the love and support of her parents, she began to grow into a bubbly, bouncy toddler.
The trauma of her early experiences was slowly fading, and her future looked bright once again. And even though Eleanor promised to be very careful with Max,ine, Mike and Carrie knew that it would take some time before she was allowed back into Maxine’s life.
But they were willing to give it a try.
A New Beginning
As a family, they embraced the lessons learned from this dramatic chapter in their lives, making sure to prioritize their daughter’s well-being above all else.
And, while the scars of the past remained, they were determined to move forward together.
Forging a new beginning that would be filled with happiness, love, and a renewed sense of trust.