Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Rose #5 - A New Friend

"What do you mean she needs surgery? She just got to eat today for the first time since the accident!"

These were the words that careened out of my mouth fervently trying to deny the news - Jade needed surgery...again.

It had been a little more than a week and a half since the accident. Jason, despite multiple broken ribs and permanent nerve damage in his leg, and Mackenzie despite her cumbersome collection of internal injuries were both already discharged, and I, although still admitted, was actually beginning to get around without a wheelchair. No doubt I had to use a walker for balance since my surgeon had stressed how important it was I didn't bend my leg and risk reopening my incision. Of course, in truth, I couldn't bend it anyway, that little joy wouldn't become available to me until after weeks of intensive physical therapy at home.

But this - I couldn't believe it. I'd spent the last evening in my room talking to Jade on the phone about all the things she wanted to eat when she was finally allowed to the next day (because of severe abdominal swelling from the impact she was receiving nutrients through IV since the accident and had finally started to feel hungry as the swelling faded).

She wanted soup. Badly.

In a haze of IV drugs I was beginning to become accustomed to, I swallowed the news harder than in moments prior.

The doctors explained to me that Jade had an aggressive intestinal infection called Clostridium Difficile and that her blood was beginning to become toxic due to a leak in the intestinal stitching from her first surgery. They needed to open her up to explore the damage.

"She's not going to need a colostomy bag, is she?"

"99% chance yes, she will, though it will be an ileostomy not a colostomy. Can you sign here?"


Guilt - I couldn't let her see me crying. She needed to be brave.

I spent the next hour or so going back and forth between hyperventilating and listening to my mom on the phone tell me to ask the nurse for a tranquilizer.

I finally gave in.

Nothing made the time move quicker. The doctors told me the surgery was virtually risk proof, when I asked what the likelihood of death was I remember the surgeon said 0%. This did not sit well with me since I like to think of myself as an honorary physician with all my years as medical mumma to qualify me, and in any surgery I'm well aware that there's at least some risk.

Wishing I could pace I watched every second of every hour pass on the clock in front of my hospital bed. An ileostomy? Was she really going to be shitting into a bag at 10 years old? I could barely wrap my brain around it - the only saving grace to the thought came when the doctors explained that the bag was only meant to be temporary to give her colon a chance to rest and heal.

With Jason by my side (he'd come to the hospital to be a support for me and for Jade when she woke from surgery) I waited and waited.

Finally, the phone rang. She was done and surgery a success.


Should this be the rose? You'd think so but this time I have something even better (as if there's anything better than my daughter surviving surgery - but seriously, want to hear it? Here it go:)

Upon discussing the bag with Jade a day or two later, me clearly still shaken by the whole thing, she turned to me and said, "Mom, look at the bag as a friend, if it weren't for that I wouldn't be alive."

A rose? I think so...

For more information on ostomy solutions please visit: The United Ostomy Associations of America, Inc.


  1. It sounds like she takes after her Mom. You must be an amazing person to have survived all of this ....

    1. Thank you :) I'd like to think she takes after me but through all this I think I learned more from her than she did from me. Such incredible survivors both my girls are. :)

  2. As crazy as my own mental ups and downs have been lately, after reading all this I feel very grateful for everything I've got in my life. You are an amazing writer, the way you tell it really makes the reader feel all the emotions you have dealt with. Great job Sarah! I'm so looking forward to reading more, being inspired more, and so thankful that you lived to continue speaking to the world! Your voice should be heard by all! WRITE A BOOK!!! :)

    1. Thank you! I just may do that :)

      I am so glad to know you can find some inspiration here...it's good to know because I have too.

      And, thank you for your words - they mean more than you know. <3

  3. last year i too had a big accident...i had to stay in the hospital for three months where i underwent numerous surgeries...its a miracle i am alive...i perfectly know how it feel to be in the hospital....where the only sanity are the visitors and the tv...

    1. 3 months??!! Wow! Incredible what medical science is capable of, isn't it? Very glad you made it through. We ended up spending a total of about 3 weeks in the hospital and THAT seemed long - I can't imagine 3 months! Definitely gives you pause to appreciate the world around you.

  4. They were the hardest scariest months of my life...You know...i never thought that i will end up in the hospital...i have always been fit and fine...but now...though i have moved on...the pain is still thr...
    take care...get well soon:D

    1. I understand. They performed surgeries on me to fix me up but it still hurts and it's been a half year almost. I find the mental part of it to be the most difficult though. Instead of feeling safer in cars as time goes on, for some reason I'm feeling more nervous. I assumed with time the fear would subside but it just sort of continues to grow. Both my daughter and I have taken to thinking that it might just be nice if we all reverted back to riding horses instead, lol.

      Thank you for the well-wishes. I hope your pain subsides with more time. Sending you out many healing vibes! :)