Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Our Christmas Miracle
When I arrived he was sitting on the side of his bed, white as a ghost and scared. He had fear in his eyes and in his voice when he spoke to me. I asked if he wanted us, my husband was with me, to help him stand and he looked at me with fear and said, "No, I want you to just call the ambulance." I told my Mom and she was just as puzzled as I was. After much discussion, we decided to call 911. This call came after he and I discussed possible heart failure. He was swollen and very confused and now scared. My Mom held Lyssa, my parent's next door neighbor had Alex, and I stood by and watched as my Dad was put on a stretcher and loaded into an ambulance. I'm not sure who was more scared, me or him.
Mom went on to the hospital and Benji and I took the kiddos home and just waited by the phone. Mom text me a few hours later about NCIS being a rerun (however at this time AT&T has been really bad so the text could have been sent hours before I got it) and as I was typing a reply, I got another text, "they are keeping him in the hospital, he's in kidney failure." I lost it, ran to my bedroom and totally had a meltdown. My husband followed and held me and told me just to cry even though it looked like he might cry at any moment. I pulled myself together to go back to the living room where I was confronted by a very scared nine year old. I told her that Pawpaw was sick and would probably be in the hospital for a couple of weeks.
Mom went home from the hospital and I talked to her and she told me that the doctor said he would be in the hospital for 7 - 10 days. The next day Dad saw his regular doctor, who admitted that his numbers were low 8 months ago when he saw him, that's right I said 8 months ago. He apologized for missing it and said he didn't understand how he could have.
Later that afternoon a specialist came to see Daddy. Of course they had been doing all kinds of tests on him in the mean time. The news wasn't good, less than 10% kidney function. He was now being faced with Dialysis for life. I called Mom at work to deliver the news. Of course it goes without saying when you're married to someone for 36 years and they are your best friend, this news doesn't come easily. Mom had a come-a-part at work. Luckily, she has a wonderful secretary at her work who was right by her, her name's Christy.
Bad news continued to come in and I began to wonder exactly how strong God thought I was because I was convinced he was wrong. On Thursday, the news of basically no kidney function came in along with the news that my dad couldn't go home, he would be released to a nursing home whenever he was released, due to the severity and needing someone to be with him at all times. This news was then followed by a biopsy of his kidneys.
On Friday, Mom text me, "he called and wants me at the hospital now, so I'm leaving work and going." I called her and she was a little upset so I told her Alex and I were on our way too. I just knew in my heart I was going to say Goodbye, all I could think was how to get in touch with Benji at work so he could get Lyssa from school and bring her to say goodbye. This was the moment that, yes I did lose the faith, I lost all hope.
Mom text me asking me where I was and I told her I just pulled up at the hospital. She told me to ask to see him at the nurses desk and they could take me to him because he's not in his room, great even more panic. I went up and asked for him, he was in dialysis. They took me back to see him and he was the same ghostly white, confused, and scared. Apparently he was more afraid of dialysis than anything, he just wanted Mom there to assure him it was going to be OK. We then went to the waiting room to wait for the procedure to be over. Mom played with Alex to ease her mind and he played and laughed right back. Before we knew it an hour had passed. One of the nurses came and told us he was sleeping through the whole thing and just snoring up a storm, yep that's my Daddy. So Mom and I went to get some lunch together, we went to Rick's Barbecue, the new one, and on a side note it was really good, the place is really nice, and they have added to their menu.
She ran home to get a few things afterwards and I ran to get Lyssa from school. We met back at the hospital where Dad was done with the treatment and was being moved into the Progressive Care Unit. He had color and I could understand the words coming out of his mouth. It was like day and night and it had only been 3 hours. They brought him a "low sodium" dinner with barely any drink. Found out he couldn't really have drinks because his kidneys couldn't do anything with the fluid.
The weekend came and went with actual conversations between us, something we hadn't done the whole time he was in the hospital because I couldn't understand him and because he was confused. Then Monday afternoon about 4pm, I got another text, "Merry Christmas!" Mom sure was in a good mood, so I asked and she said his kidneys were functioning. I understood but didn't understand... but they did cancel his dialysis for the day because they said he didn't need it and he was being moved to a regular room.
This morning, Tuesday December 14, I was talking to him on the phone when the doctor came in. He called me back to tell me, he has normal kidney function, that's right NORMAL! They gave him a unit of blood and some iron today and he is being released to Florence Rehab to rebuild his strength for 2 to 3 weeks and then he's coming home. My FAITH is back and will NEVER leave me again. Doctor's are even surprised at his recovery, but that's the power of prayer and his own inner strength and will power.
My Dad means the world to me and our family, and we have received the best Christmas of all! We have my Dad and our new son, happy and healthy. Merry Christmas!!!