Friday, October 7, 2011

Army Strong - Day One post surgery

Outside the hospital
We're sitting in a darkened room at Keller Army Hospital on a crisp autumn day at West Point. The sound of the CryoCuff Cooler chugs along giving Nate icy respite from the pain of surgery. We are only a few hours post-ACL surgery and even though this is not easy for any of us (especially Nate!), I'm so happy my middle OS and I are here.
Nate will come to love and hate 
this machine during his rehab

Though my family often chides me for asking a lot of questions, today I think Nate at least would agree, that trait does have its merits. I had myriad questions of the surgeon but didn't barrage him. A mama wants to effectively advocate for her son. If you've ever been to the doctor or had surgery, you understand how important it can be to have another voice speaking on your behalf. In the short time he has been a patient at the hospital, I have run interference for my OS. When Nate was thirsty, I requested water, when he drank Sprite, I asked if he could have more. The medical staff have many patients, Aaron and I have one. It's not being a diva or a prima donna, I'm not a Kim Kardashian or Paris Hilton, just a mama, if I can do something quicker or easier, than I want to assist. 
Saw this in the waiting room - Rick Springfield 
on a talk show this morning...
I think he's had some surgery too! :) 

When Nate's IV monitor was sounding "occlusion," I fetched someone to investigate. When he thought he might throw up, I inquired of a barfing receptacle. I'm sure Nate would have managed but not very comfortably because he's too weak to do much. Aaron has faithfully stayed by Nate's side even though there's really nothing for him to do here. I am proud of my boy for his sacrifice and love. 
Aaron and I went apple picking with a friend
yesterday - we are the two amigos!
Here's an example of how Aaron and I have been a good team. A short while ago, a male nurse came to help Nate with a basic biological function. Nate did not want my intervention (totally understood that!) so Aaron and I waited in the hallway. The nurse gave Nate his privacy once he had transferred him to the toilet. He left the room and told Nate he would get him back to the bed. Nate used the restroom and Aaron and I stepped back in the room. Nate began to wobble and he looked white as a ghost. I yelled for Aaron's help in case Nate fainted as I retrieved the nurse. Aaron stood by his brother's side until the staff got him safely back to bed. Now Nate is fast asleep, problem avoided, thank the Lord. 

My OS has entered the subset of cadets who find themselves needing surgery during their 48 month sojourn at USMA. It's a unique subset of the Corps and if possible, I'd recommend finding another "club" to join! Seriously! Thanks for your prayers, concern and support, it means so much to us. Army Strong!

1 comment:

Hillcrest Cottage said...

So awesome that you can be there for him! Hope he continues to get stronger and stronger.

My cadet was in the hospital in South Korea (in August) with tonsillitis so painful that they gave him morphine. I could not be there, of course, and it broke my heart AFTER he was released because he didn't tell us about the incident while it was happening (of course).

Patients definitely need advocates... great for Nate to have YOU!