Sunday, August 29, 2010

Miracles Witnessed Here

I'm no stranger to emergency rooms, however it only occurred to me today - 24 days After Accident - that my myriad of ER experiences never included Trauma. I've been in emergency rooms for strokes, heart attacks and the usual kid and geriatric events. Never for anything remotely like this. I am in awe of people who choose to work in trauma and have a new appreciation, an undying admiration and respect for them all after this experience.

Being a huge fan of the past drama, "ER" and the current hit "House," I considered myself nearly an emergency room expert of sorts. Besides which, psychological thrillers are my favorite books to read, meaning literary blood and gore is commonplace in my head. Tess Gerritsen is a favorite medical mystery/thriller author. These facts came to me as I nearly passed out at least five times during the nine hours I was stuck in a corner while they worked on my husband. Well, dang it if that blood just wasn't so REAL and so EVERYWHERE. Trauma doctors and nurses and attendants and whoever rushing back and forth with blood bags and tubing and syringes and bandages and electronic doohickies, running tests and sewing stitches and creating a pile of bloody stuff that surely to God I hope they burned.

Oh, and then there was the paperwork. For every 15 minutes someone administered care to my husband there was some poor gal filling out 30 minutes of paperwork. With. Every. Deed. Massive amounts of trees were felled so that the proper papers could be filed in triplicate.

Eventually, blessfully, hubby was placed in SICU around 1am Saturday, August 7th after having been med-flighted by helicopter to Huntsville Hospital around 3pm Friday afternoon. Twelve days in-hospital and 3 surgeries later he is home. Both cheekbones were fractured, his jaw was broken in 4 places, lost multiple teeth, crazy amount of scalp and chin lacerations, broken right upper shin bone and right talus/ankle bone.

The cause? Discovered only the last week in the hospital hubby has an unusual heart arrhythmia that apparently developed over the last year. They only know because during his stay he was having some "blank out" times that couldn't be identified. A heart monitor proved that his heart would suddenly race like a machine gun - often for as long as 2 minutes. His blood pressure would plummet and he would basically blank out, or lose that time. So his last surgery, or procedure really, was the implanting of a teeny tiny defibrillator which will literally shock his heart when it goes into this "sudden death" (their word, not mine) arrhythmia.

Which leads us to the ladder. The last thing I said to him as he was leaving was "Do NOT get on a ladder today 'cause I won't be there." "Of course I won't," he quipped as he dashed out the door. However, right before leaving the lake house to head home he decided it wouldn't hurt to Spackle some cracks before painting. His feet were 10 feet up when he "blanked out." He's 6'1. You can do the math. The maxillofacial specialist said the only times he's seen this extent of massive trauma to the jaw also involved a broken neck, and/or paralysis or death. Hubby was "loose as a goose" therefore his injuries were much less than they could have been. Kinda like a drunk that walks away from a 10 car pile-up of his own creation.

So, there ya have it. I'm now nursing a very changed individual. We have been blessed by the generosity and kindness of manner of family and friends and its to them that this post is dedicated. Thank you all - each of you - for your cards and prayers, thoughts and generosity of time. My photography days have been put on hold for a bit, obviously. But those of you who know me KNOW that I've a bevy of images saved to share and stories to go with them. One day I may even do a great blog about Blue Cross Blue Shield. It won't be a pretty one, though.

Thank you all for your kind comments! I've missed being here and have missed you all!


Gaelyn said...

It's never Real until it happens.

I'm so glad your hubby is on the road to recovery and home under your excellent care. Maybe some of the TV medical watching will pay off now.

You've been missed. Please take care of yourself as well.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Oh, NO!!! How awful for you both! I am so glad that he wasn't injured more severely. I wish him a speedy recovery. Bless your heart...

Diana (Di) said...

What a horrific course of events. I am so sorry, but so pleased to know that things are proceeding well.

I haven't done too much blogging this summer either... other things call and first things first. ;)

As for the red tape, my guess it is going to get a whole lot worse before it gets better; the bureaucracy is overwhelming.

Have a wonderful week ahead and know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and your husband for a good recovery.

Rachel said...

I'm so happy that things have progressed, that he is home, that it could have been worse and wasn't, that there was room to be grateful, that you are back here, that you both are safe.

My love and wishes for continued improvement.

R (bac)

Jan (Thanks For Today) said...

Wow, Debi...just wow. What a post you have written here. Thank God your husband is finally home. Thank God he made it through. The healing time will be long and seemingly unending, at times...but time does help and heal most wounds. I'll be thinking of you and am glad you were able to fill us in. So glad they figured out what was very sorry to hear about his accident. Looking forward to your stash of photos, from time to time:-)

Rural Rambler said...

Debi so nice to hear from you! Glad your hubby is home and I am sending prayers and quick recovery vibes. I am also happy they implanted the teeny tiny defib thingie to deal with the nasty problem that caused the whole thing. Been thinking about you two!

Blessing Counter said...

Oh my friend, I am so sorry! Praying and hopefully we will TALK this week! Love you (and Bobert)!

Jenny said...

I'm amazed you've found time to blog about it all Debs! Make sure you take good care of yourself as well as your Bob. Warm and healing thoughts wending their way across the puddle to you two! xx

Eve said...

I'm a firm believer that everything happens for a reason even tho sometimes we don't quite get it right away. My heart goes out to Bobert that he had to endure such an experience, but glad to hear he never saw it coming. Poor dear! We're all rooting for ya Bob and you are just being a wonderful supporter Debs. (I've picked up on Jenny's cute little pet names haven't I!)
Look forward...get well...the road ahead doesn't look quite as steep.

wcgillian said...

Long road ahead for your family Debi but you will make it. All of the stuff I saw as a police officer and to think that today if one of my kids has a scrapped knee I get light headed. Strange how that works. Then there was the time I went into a class so I could be in the delivery room with my first born. We walked into the delivery room for a lecture and the next thing you know, I am sliding down the wall. Needless to say I was not allowed in the room when the time came, Its amazing that I ever went on to become a cop. Keep your chin up buddy!

bunnits said...

I've been wondering how things were going for the two of you since your last post. Wow. I'll keep those prayers going.

Shelley said...

Deb my dear, my heart stopped and the chills began as I started to read this post. My dear girl, keep that man on the ground for goodness sake. This is an awesome post- thank you for taking the time to share with us. Know that we are thinking of you. Shout out if we can help in any way.

Shelley said...

Deb my dear, my heart stopped and the chills began as I started to read this post. My dear girl, keep that man on the ground for goodness sake. This is an awesome post- thank you for taking the time to share with us. Know that we are thinking of you. Shout out if we can help in any way.

Diane said...

Thank you for the update. He is one very fortunate man. So glad he's now home.

I hope life is still magical for your Mom :)

PS: I too loved ER.

Julie Magers Soulen said...

Oh my gosh I am so sorry to hear this news and also so very happy that it has a happy ending. Sending many thoughts your way. Take care of each other.

Julie Magers Soulen Photography
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