Wednesday, September 3

Surgery #2

So we went our own ways that night of the lemonade. Mom was great and I was tired and driving home, I felt happy. I went to sleep that night without a phone by my side and put my iPad on the ground. I slept like a baby. 

I woke up around 8 and reached down to text Brian about a dream I had just had, when i opened my iPad I was alarmed by all of the text messages waiting for me there. I started reading them and soon learned that a lot had happened in the night. I started to cry histerically and woke up the 2 kids that were sleeping in my room. 

The text messages that I was reading were the group family texts and dad had informed everyone at about 230am that mom had coded and been given CPR and resesitated and rushed to the ICU. Dad arrived about 3am where he watched the doctors rescusitate her for about an hour and a half. She had had a interior artery bleed out and she had no oxygen or blood to her brain for that time. He said she was rushed into surgery at 5am and that she was now back in ICU on life support in a coma. 

I freaked out, obviously. I didn't know what to do or who to call. I didn't know what to think or say to my kids who were so worried why I was crying so hard. I prayed and prayed and cried and cried. I also didn't quite understand what had happened or anything. I finally called dad and he told me he was on his way home to come and get me. We cried together on the phone for a few minutes. My dad doesn't often cry, in fact before all of this with my mom I am not sure I have ever seen him cry. I asked him how bad it was and through his tears he replied that it was bad and he didn't know if she would live. I lost it, again. 

I quickly tried to call the babysitter and had her mother wake her up. I am not sure they knew anything I was saying as I was so hysterical. I tried Brian but couldn't get through. Dad finally got home from the hospital and we embraced and cried together. we took about 20 minutes to gather a few things and we left as quickly as possible for the hospital. 

Walking into the ICU where she was, was the scariest thing I have ever done. I broke down over and over again. I rushed to her side and reached under the inflated heated blankets they had over her. I reached through the so many lines that were running and tried to look past the many tubes in her nose, mouth, and all around her. There were about 15 IV poles running along with many other machines. I have never seen anything like this before. When we arrived they had some wires hooked up to her head for an EEG to see her brain waves. When they removed them they said there was nothing happening. Dad explained a lot to me when I didn't understand, and this he made clear ment that she may be brain dead from the lack of oxygen to her brain for so long. 

We took turns whispering in her ear and telling her we were there by her side and loved her very much. I held her hand many times and didn't want to leave her side. My brother Brian booked a flight and so did Libby and Sean. The family was gathering for whatever would come. We we're preparing for the worst case scenario which was very much a possibility. The odds were against her. 

We sat for hours in her room and in the afternoon the nurses were changing out the dirty sheets that had been soiled through the night and cleaning her face off when they rolled her over to pull the old sheet out. Her arm flew up to her face and dad and I leapt to our feet with excitement. This was the first thing we had seen her do and we so hoped it was good news of brain activity. The nurse, as I learned they all do this with brain injury patients, loudly spoke "Lynne if you can hear me give me a thumbs up!" She repeated this over and over and after many times, I swear we saw a thumb raise. The nurse was scepticle and said it may have been a fluke and we need to test several times through the day to see if it was indeed intentional. We were hopeful. Every time we would hold her hand we would ask her to squeeze our hand if she could hear us, or wiggle her toes. Time and time again there was nothing. As the day went on we were able to get a few more responses, like a faint thumbs up, but the one that she was doing for sure was a toe wiggle. This was so exciting, even if it wasn't every time and it wasn't a lot of wiggle. 

By midnight, we were all together by mothers side. Dad, me, Libby, Sean, And Brian. We went next door to have a family prayer in a private room and we left dad to sleep there for the night. I did not want to leave her side, this was so difficult. I feel like I was having some post traumatic stress of falling asleep and waking up to more messages. 

The next morning, Wednesday, we woke up and headed into the hospital as soon as we could. It was another long day in the ICU as were the rest of the week. There were slow gradual improvements but nothing yet to lead us to believe we were out of the woods. She was not waking up and no machines had been pulled out. She had lost almost all of here blood into her abdomens through the bleed and had received a full blood transfusion to carry out the surgery the day before. 

The week is a blur. I had many breakdowns and many tearful minutes and hours. Many prayers and plea's to my father in heaven. Many hugs, many times I wasn't sure what to do, and many times I felt the spirit touch me. I was able to search and dig deep down for comfort from my father in heaven and my own father on earth. My faith felt weak, and my faith felt strong. It was so confusing. I knew Heavenly Father was in control but it was so hard to allow him to be and lose the control I so badly wanted to have. I was scared for the future, and didn't know what to do with myself. It was hard to not have my husband there but he stayed behind in Texas to watch Libby's kids and to be Close to dan if he needed him. He was of course, still in the hospital himself. 

I went back several times to a talk mom and I read together on the night of dans accident about tragedy or destiny. Adversity is essential to this life. He talks about how "no pain that we suffer, no trial that we experience is waisted. It ministers to our education...all that we suffer, and all that we endure, especially when we endure it patiently, builds up our characters,  purifies our hearts, expands our souls, and makes us more tender and charitable, more worthy to be called the children of god...and it is through sorrow and suffering, toil and tribulation, that we gain the education that we come here to acquire..." 
It teaches also that in times of trial we must trust in The Lord. This is so extremely difficult to do. I feel like I wavered and wondered and doubted so many things. 

In D&C 42:44-48 it says "and again, it shall come to pass that he that hath faith in me to be healed, and is not appointed unto death, shall be healed." 
This was proven a truth to me as on Saturday morning was woke up and didn't know where she was. She thought she had been moved to a new private room and was so confused as to why we were all there. By this time robin and the kids had also come up and were there as well. Those were very long days spent in the ICU but on Monday she was transfered back out to the high observation too on the same unit she was in before. This time, there was a lot of monitoring for different things and a lot of things that scared us. It was truly a miracle as in the ICU step by step they took her off each machine and watched her body take over. There were amany body functions and parts that were not cooperating but she was alive and she had brain function. We were so grateful. 

Another 2 weeks in hospital to recover from this set back was a long time, but we knew it was all for her good. This was a slower recovery and didn't seem like much was happening. We kept her off the crazy meds and kept her sane, but she was exhausted and needed a lot of help. I am so grateful for this chance I had to be there to be by her side and help her through everything I did. There were daily ups and downs but we tried to stay happy and possitive for her. Her memory was spotty and she didn't remember much about the ICU, a little glimpse of something here and there but she has no memory of that week, maybe more. I think that is for the better. It was an awful week. 

She got discharged  after a few weeks and we were able to care for her at home. Making food, keeping the house quiet, washing and blowing dry her hair and doing anything we could for her made the time fly by. We celebrated her birthday home after a few days and were so grateful she had made it to her 61st birthday! That's the best gift ever!

Finally time came for me to leave about 3 weeks are surgery. I had spent the last 2 months of my life with my mom, and I was right there by her side. I was feeling scared and lost to leave and go home. I didn't want to leave. I knew though that she needed to get going on her own. 

Her recovery is going so well and she is improving each and every day. She is walking more and is able to get around town driving herself now too. We are here now about 8 weeks after her second surgery, 10 weeks from the first and she is amazing. Such a beautiful miracle. I love my mother with everything in me. She is amazing and wonderful and I can't imagine my life without her in it. We FaceTime daily and we love to hear what she gets to do each day. I imagine myself with her and just want to climb into bed with her each morning and each night. I want to rub my mom and dad's feet each night' just like I did while I was there with them. I miss them so much and know that those 9 weeks in Canada were the most wonderful unforgettable, weeks I will have in my memory bank. My love for my mom grew, when I didn't think it could any more! My love for my savior and the atonement grew as well.

This is quite a personal post but I did approve it by mom, and I know I wanted it in my records. 


BrittanyB said...

Oh Sis, what a hard hard summer! You are such a wonderful example of faith, and eternal perspective. Love you!

Meagan @ Meagan Tells All said...

Reading this a second time was really hard to do. I know we all appreciated the updated emails from your dad, but his were very straight forward and doctor-esque, if that makes any sense. This post, and the others, really hit me hard of all the things your mother was put through and the emotional ups and downs. Your mother is such an amazing woman and I love her dearly. She is a modern day miracle and it is always so encouraging to hear these stories to help build our faith and testimonies. Love you lots, Jeni!