Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Remembering....a year ago

 Today was a remembering of what happened a year ago.  Here are a few disjointed thoughts/feelings from that time.

One year ago tonight, I was in a helicopter with my eldest son being life-flighted to another hospital.  I was scared.  Numb.  Praying.  Full of questions.  You see, just a few hours before, I was mixing up cookies and cooking candy.  Life was good.  The boys were out sledding with daddy.  Callie and I were enjoying the quietness of a girls-only night!!  30 minutes later, a phone changed all that.  Coats and shoes were thrown on.  I ran out into the dark and snowy night waiting for a ride to the hospital.  I knew nothing other than my oldest son was hurt.  At the hospital, sights and sounds awaited me like I've never experienced before.  I barely recognized the boy laying on the table in the emergency room.  It was evident that they were lifeflighting him immediately.  I insisted on going with him.  Miraculously, I was allowed.  (I was told later that is a rarity.)  The 15 minute flight seemed like it took hours.  I still didn't know what was wrong with our son.  They had him paralyzed and intubated.  I counted and prayed in between breaths.  At times it seemed as if they had stopped breathing for him and I wondered if he was gone.  I was scared!!  I thought of all the times I'd been short or inpatient with him.  I wondered if I would ever get a chance to be his mommy again.  I prayed some more.  Others were praying.  We arrived.  A blanket was wrapped around me and a life flight bear was thrust into my hands.  I'll not forget that long walk from the helicopter pad into the brightly lit hallways of the hospital.  There were lines of people just standing.  Watching.  Waiting.  What were they thinking?  Did they know about our son arriving?  These were just some of the thoughts that flashed through my brain.  In the emergency room, Seth was immediately surrounded by teams of doctors, nurses, technicians.  At one point I counted over a dozen people surrounding him.  A white board was placed close to where I was standing.  It had 12 year old boy written on it.  My first thought was, his name is Seth and he's only 11!  A man slipped in the room and handed me glass of water.  He was the chaplain.  I'd never really thought about what a chaplain's role in a hospital was until then.  You see, my mom is a chaplain one day a week in a hospital.  Was this what she does.  Sees.  How does one go to work day in and day out and be around things like this?  I was grateful, that he had came to work that night.  That he was there.  I did not know him or even remember his name now, but I thank God for sending him my way.  I was all alone at that time.  I was shown to a waiting room.  I made a few phone calls.  More prayers went up from others as they found out.  I'm so grateful for God's people that pray.  Anytime.  All the time.  For people they don't even know.  It makes a difference. 
A long night was ahead.  Our pastor drove up with my husband.  I was glad he came.  He prayed with us.  Listened to us.  We found out that Seth had fractured his cheekbone, broken his lower jawbone and had some slight bleeding on the brain.  They couldn't evaluate other injuries until they brought him out of the medically induced coma.  They couldn't tell us if he would be the same Seth when he woke up.  But then again, are any of us the same after a crisis like this?  Not much sleep was to be had on the hard, cold hospital chairs in Seth's room.  We lay there listening to the machine breathing for Seth.  Listening to the monitors beep.  Holding him down when he fought to get up.  At one point it took 5 of us to get him back down.  That was heart-breaking.  Hours and hours later.....they FINALLY took out his breathing tube.  He was still very out of it.  Once a doctor okayed his neck, the neck brace came off.  He seemed much happier then.  Then it was down to surgery.  They were able to pop the jawbone very easily into place.  Then his mouth had to be wired shut.  Finally 2 days after he arrived in the hospital we were heading home.  It was wonderful to be back home!!!  But that brought along a whole new set of challenges.  For instance, Seth had to learn how to eat with a syringe.  Someone had brought us a wonderful Sunday meal of lasagna and all the side dishes.  We decided to puree lasagna.  So, NOT a good idea!!!  The syringe exploded and I ended up wearing more lasagna then Seth had in his mouth!!!  Then, Seth had to learn how to communicate with his mouth wired shut.  That was frustrating for all around at first.  We gradually got used to it and before he got his wires off, he was quit fluent at the 'wired shut' language!!!  I could write for hours more of the many experiences we had, but need to get on with our happy celebration evening part of the blog post. :)  I do want to say I'm so VERY grateful to all those that brought in food for us, gifts for Seth, cards and the many, MANY prayers that went up for our family.  It meant so much to us then and still does now. 

~A Celebration of being Alive and the Power of Prayer~

God works in mysterious ways.....He sent a big snow storm into town yesterday and church was cancelled tonight.  We were able to enjoy a relaxing evening together as a family.  It started with a giant cookie pie.  Baked in my Christmas present.  An ENORMOUS cast iron skillet.  This thing has been well-used already in the very short time I've had it!!!
 Fresh from the oven......can you smell it?
 ~Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie A la mode~
 Followed by a rousing game of Lego World Explorer.  This was a fun and LOUD game.  You should've saw/heard us all cheering our little Lego cars on!!!  This was a Christmas gift to the kids from us and the first time playing it.
 Samuel wanted his picture taken with the game.
 Guess who the winner was?  Callie!!!!!  Can you tell she's just a little excited!!!
 He didn't look this good a year ago!  We thank God for sparing his life.  I'm excited to see what God has planned for him in the future. 
 Not to be outdone by his brother getting a picture taken with his life flight bear....Simon insisted on a picture with his stuffed turtle, Pookie. 
After the game, the kids snuggled in blankets on the couch and we watched a Christmas movie together.  They got to bed much later than usual (in fact, one little boy fell asleep on the couch), but we all enjoyed our family night together.  Evenings where we all can truly relax, have been few and far between lately. 


Anonymous said...

I agree that God has something special planned for Seth... glad you all had such a nice family night!

Sarah H.

Carrie said...

I was just thinking of that--I just couldn't remember when the exact date was. I'm so thankful that God answered our prayers to let Seth stay with his family a little longer!

What a special family night!!