Spina BifidaFAIR WARNING: This is going to be spread out over a couple of posts. It is a drama going on in my life that needs full disclosure to understand. I will try to share bits of humor (like always) as I go, but some days it’s just hard to find a smile. Read on if you are brave, a single parent, a mom or a dad, or if you are a young adult that doesn’t get their parents, and may you fight the good fight…
IMAGINE: A young woman in her early twenties being told by her doctor that due to the trauma from her childhood, she will most likely never have kids. Imagine being that same young woman who just so happened to love kids. Imagine her confusion and heartbreak, then her anger. She did not ask to be molested at eleven years old – but it happened, get over it.
Get over it she did. She went seeking fun at any and every place she could find it. She moved to another state to meet new people and start fresh. Then she met a man that made her very happy. They both had shared interests: Dancing, shooting pool and watching old movies to name a few. Imagine how surprised she became when she, after only six months with this man, found out she was pregnant. The fear and joy she held were amazing. She shared the joy with her man to which he replied, “Oh.” They both left for work, and that was the last day she ever saw that man again.
Imagine about nine months later her fear not knowing if she was good enough to handle a child alone. She pretty much ruled out kid’s years ago, and now was in the process of having one. She considered allowing it to be taken and give to a more suitable home. Perhaps one with at least better income and stability. They the child was born. She had both feet turned into her legs and curled up almost in a “u” shape. The woman knew there was no way anyone else would take such a child, so she viewed it as all oddities in her life: It’s just part of God’s humor running her life again. The child was all hers.
Now the woman was not sad in this circumstance, in fact, she was overjoyed. She had always wanted children (not necessarily a husband, since most the men she knew were just overly large children anyway.), so she was going to step up and make the best life she could for her new little daughter.
The young woman had a strong family and tons of really great friends. The very first surgery on her beautiful daughter’s feet became a marker for the rest. The first was done by a local doctor in a local hospital through ordinary procedures, or so she thought.
- Got to the hospital early to prep.
- Sat with her daughter while the doctors and nurses did their prepping.
- The woman and her mother had been told it would take approximately six hours.
- The hospital brought in a crib type bed, and the woman placed her daughter on it.
- The daughter began to cry and threw up her arms for her momma to pick her back up – and the woman began to cry.
- Two nurses started to wheel the daughter away down the hall, and a third nurse held the mother. Then the nurse said something to the mother that she has never forgotten:
- ”Don’t worry Honey; the surgery will be fine. It is only the anesthetic that can kill her.”
- WHAT?? WHAT THE HELL?? Luckily, the Grandmother was there to grab the young woman as she lunged at the nurse! How could she tell her something like that at such a time?
Well, that was the initiation into the wonderful world of surgery for that once beautiful young woman (obviously losing about ten years of age to this recent bit of information.).
Once that first ordeal was over, and through the help of some outstanding friends, she was able to hook herself and her daughter up with Shriners Hospital for Children. Over the next twenty years of her daughter’s life, the mother went from Denver, Colorado to Salt Lake City, Utah every year (sometimes twice a year) for her daughter’s surgeries (Spina Bifida). Twenty surgeries in twenty years. Through every single one of those surgeries, she prepped herself mentally, and emotionally, for her daughter to not make it. EVERY SINGLE TIME!
The young woman made her decisions and was going to become very familiar with the ways of surgery (and there are many tricks to be aware of).
(to be continued…)