my momma, she is young in this photo below, but I do like it. I am thinking early 20's here, and could have been a model! except she is short.
it all started on Fri, Feb 28th. my daddy called about noon, and handed her the phone. they were admitting her to the local hospital with what they thought was diverticulitis. I went down, and stayed for a bit. after a few hours, in true mother fashion, she was telling me I needed to get on the road and get home before dark.... "so I didn't hit a deer". talked to her the next morning, she was getting released. talked with my brother, all was good. then they were drawing her blood again because the first results looked funny and the dr thought they got mixed up, so she wanted to recheck. got the second results, they did a CT Scan and then the dr called me. said they were transferring her out because the radiologist saw what appeared to be a mass in her stomach area. while I was talking with the dr, my daddy called. while I was talking to him, my brother called. while I was talking to my brother, my aunt called. everyone needed answers, myself included, and there were none yet. so I grabbed some clothes and headed to Texas. I did forget important pieces of clothing, including but not limited to a coat and boots. it was 80 degrees when I left and by morning, it was 30, for the high!
after getting to the hospital I go in search of her room, only to be more than a little alarmed to discover they have admitted her to ICU. I even asked the nurse, is this really ICU? yes he said. is it because all the other beds in the hospital are full???? no he said, as he gave me a reassuring look. I was more than a little freaked by this discovery, thinking to myself something is going on that no one is telling me. within the next couple of hours, a couple of drs came in, still no answers, including the fact that no one had told me as of yet why she was in ICU. I did find out before leaving for the night that the reason she was in ICU was due to blood loss, and they had started giving her blood.
I don't know, maybe I was a little in shock over it all, it had happened rather fast, and honestly, I hadn't even had time to process what was going on. my phone kept ringing, everyone was scared, myself included. when they say there is a mass, it's not good. mom kept telling the drs it was because she'd been taking so many ibuprofen. the plan was to do a scope in the morning, go take a look at it, and get a biopsy. permits were signed. Jessica and I arrived at 8:30 on the dot, that is what time they would let us in. they were all set up in her room for the scope. had the people there, the machine there, just waiting on the dr. suddenly, a surgeon calls up and says STOP. do not do it. now we are really freaked out. within a short period of time the surgeon come up, says she believes it is a tear in a artery an that what they are seeing is not a mass, but a pool of blood instead, which would explain the blood loss. that sounds better, right, a tear in the artery can be repaired. so, instead they will do an angiogram to see if they can repair it. and then we saw more drs. they all agreed with Dr. Rizzo, which was reassuring. she believed that possibly there had been a aneurysm in one of her arteries around the stomach area. and then we waited, for the radiologist to come in. it wasn't an emergency, it was Sunday, and there was snow and sleet out. then all hell broke loose.
Jessica and I were in the waiting room, the radiologist comes in and says he was not able to repair the artery, and we know this will mean surgery, probably tomorrow. Jess and I head back to mom's room in ICU, and discover a new dr in there, trying to find out why she is hurting so bad. she is talking to us, they send her down for a cat scan, and when she comes back, 10 minutes later, she is not conscious. nurses are scrambling, drs are rushing in. it was instant! Jess and I stepped into the hall as they wheeled her in from the cat scan, everyone was running and yelling. while they didn't come say anything to us at first, we heard a lot. too much. you know the ICU rooms are not very private, and standing in the hall you can see in and hear all. and they are yelling for blood, and more blood. and more blood.
to be honest, I don't remember much now. I think I blocked a lot of it out. I did what I needed to do, talked to drs, signed surgical permits, stood by and waited, and the big one, I called my daddy and my brother to tell them they needed to get there, and get there now. Thank God for Jessica, because I really had a couple of meltdowns, out in the hall. I remember crying, the drs rubbing my shoulder and saying we are going to do what we can for her. not everything is going to be ok, or we've got this, we'll fix it, just quietly, we will do everything we can for her.
I had talked to so many drs my head was spinning! the general surgeon, (who I swear saved her life!), vascular surgeon, lung specialist, kidney specialist, gastro dr, anesthesiologist. I know there were 4 surgeons along with the vascular surgeons team in there, and that is a lot of people! and still, we don't really know what happened, what went wrong, or what is going on.
by now mom is in surgery, and Jess and I are literally pacing the floor. not only are we worried about mom, but daddy and Jeff haven't arrived yet, and there is ice on the roads. I'm not sure which was worse, being worried about my momma, wondering if my daddy and brother were safe on the ice, or watching my daddy worry about mom. they told us the surgery would take at least 2 hours from the time they got started. I don't remember what time they took her back, but I do know it was 7:43 when Dr. Rizzo was finally able to come talk to us.
as it turns out, she did have a aneurysm burst, in her artery that supplies the blood to the spleen. when they did the angiogram, there was a clot, and I think they told us the wire pushed the small clot free, which then opened up the blood to flow/gush from the tear caused by the aneurysm. she is so very lucky and blessed that is where the aneurysm was at. because the artery went to her spleen, they were able to remove it, along with her spleen. did you know the spleen is what helps your immune system??? I didn't. I know people live without them, but didn't know what their function was.
mom told me today that not only will she need a flu shot each year, which Dr. Rizzo had already told us, but that I will too. WHAT? this girl doesn't get shots, until now.
while my story has a happy ending, I know so many do not. so, if you still have your parents or parent with you, take a few minutes, spend some time together, and make a memory. you will be glad you did!
and to end on a happy note, here are a couple of layouts, (with really bad sucky lighting during photography cause someone was in a huge hurry) from our time in KY last year. yes, that is me in the top photo, in the top layout, hugging a tree like we are close!
and Sondra! she is so much fun! love-love-love her!
I've got layout supply info somewhere, but didn't care to locate it this morning when I loaded the photos. if you really want it, send me a email!