Thursday, December 20, 2007

Sitting in Chairs

I have sat in a lot of chairs this past week, keeping vigil, willing life back into Nicole's body. A body that at times looks exactly like my baby did when she was three. I have sat in the plastic covered chairs that convert to beds but never feel quite right, the springy backed plastic conference chairs, the ledge of the window in her room and once on a closed porta potty. All the while, trying to make her healthy again.

She had a lot of visitors tonight and I think they made her tired. Her cheeks were flushed and her eyes were bright and dull all at the same time. There isn't the happy girl there. The one that draws people to her. The one that was always better at conversation than I. After everyone left, I sat for awhile, hoping my presence would give her some rest...I am not always sure of that because she has always been Poppy's girl. I could not help the tears that came. Tears for her and the thought that she might never have children of her own...and she loves them so much. Her sad little voice had assured me,"Don't worry. There's lots of little kids that need mom's. I can always adopt." Tears over how this had happened so quickly, over what could have been differently. Fresh tears for a fresh situation, mingling with ever ready, already feeling ancient tears for the man I haven't seen in ever so long and still ache to see. He would have made this right. He would have known exactly what to do. He could have calmed all of our fears.

I drove home tonight with James because he is missing me and scared for his sister and sad and all those things that a little boy should never be. I drove home in our too big for us now car thinking about how, just 4 and a half months ago there were four of us. Four of us more content and happy than I ever was grateful for. Tonight there were two of us. And I wish I could stop thinking for awhile.

Your thoughts, your vibes and your prayers have meant so much. The cards and Christmas cards make me smile and I really appreciate them. I put up a picture of Magglio that a friend from DU found in her room and it made her smile. I've printed up well wishes for her to read. You are all really wonderful. I can never hope to repay this kindness.

And on to her status. Her temperature rose slightly to 100 tonight. The nurse turned down the thermostat in her room which could have contributed to that. It was at a very muggy 77. Her hemoglobin is below 8. If it stays that way tomorrow they will give her a transfusion. On the positive side, they clamped her NG tube late last night, and she made it through the day without nausea which means they can remove it tomorrow. Her oxygen saturation remains high. There are bright spots everywhere here. The fever is the thing that worries me most because the chance of recurrent infection is pretty high... her surgeon is excellent though. She worries a lot about things "hurting", like the removal of the NG, the removal of the staples, the drains coming out. My reply is always,"I will be right here baby..." I wish I could trade places with her.


Tall Drink of Water said...


I am so glad to hear that Nik's condition is improving. And that Magglio brought her a smile. That makes me feel all gooshy!


haylee said...

Dear Laura:

I am so pleased you have such much good news to report -- especially concerning her N/G tube -- that's a biggie.

I wouldn't be terribly worried about the low grade fever. A fever signals the body to send out more white blood cells to help fight the infection and is also a normal reaction to any trauma.-- it is quite normal for the temp to rise following any type of surgery - even those that don't involve infection. I hope this helps you put your mind at rest there.

I think a transfusion may be a good thing -- she must feel terribly fatigued with he hemaglobin being so low. It will give her a boost. the fact that her O2 sats are good shows that even though low, her red blood cells are carrying adequate oxygen for her.

As an ER/CCU/ICU RN, it has been my experience that most don't mind the removel of either the N/G or the latex drains -- if the drain is secured with a suture it might pinch a bit but nothing horrible. Both zip our quite quickly & painlessly. You might also want to tell Nik that the suture line feels quite numb for a while so the staple removel shouldn't bother her too much if at all. It might help for her to actully see the remover and have the process explained to her -- it's quite neat the way it just "lifts" the staples out - you would know best about whether or not that would help her. Me? I am a "wanna know explain it to me" person.

What a great gal she is to have such an attitude re: babies. Hopefully her other ovary is unaffected.

I am sure your are feeling punched out & I hope the good news that today brought will allow you to get some rest & relaxation - for as much as is possible. As you know, our bodies have an amazing capacity to heal - especially with youth on her side.

I will continue my thoughts & prayers with extra for James who surely feels anxious about all that is happening.

Wishing you & yours the very best...


Kathy said...

Dear Nicole,
Rest and sleep and feel better. It is all so difficult; the worry and loneliness away from loved ones, the nurses waking you every four hours to make sure you are OK, the blood draws, the bed 'not your own' that never feels quite comfortable, the food... but it all leads to your body recovered and back home again. I am thinking of you and checking in several times daily to see how you are. Hugs!

Kathy said...

Dear Laura,
I worry about how exhausted and worried you must be.
My thoughts and prayers are with you, Nicole and James.

Laurie said...


I am grateful for the update, so sad for what you are having to endure right now. Praying for you so much right now. And for dear Nicole, so much for her to have to deal with and for James, sweet James who must think his world is falling apart again. I ask God to give each of you His peace tonight and to let you feel His arms around you. Praying for her temperature to stable out and for her body to heal completely. So many needs and so many prayers Laura. Give her a hug for me and let her know she is loved. You all are loved by me and I will not stop praying for peace and healing for this. Take care of yourself Laura, you need strength for yourself and for the kids.

Love and ((HUGS)) to you all,
Laurie in Ca.

Gina said...

You are all in my thoughts tonight, Laura.


Emblita said...

Oh Laura. I'm having a hard time expressing how I feel mad at the world for all these horrible things happening to your family in such a short time period. At the same time I'm infinitely relieved that Nicole is already feeling better- I'm certain she will be fine. As for her having kids, that will sort itself out. And like she pointed out herself, there are lots of children in the world in need of loving parents. But thats something to worry about in the future. Right now, lets just hope that everything turns out okey with Nicole.

You are all in my thoughts.

Sharpie said...

Your daughter's outlook and looking to the future with a positive spin is a great indicator of 1) she is beginning to feel better 2) what an amazing job you both have done as parents. None of us know what the future will bring, we must always be optimistic and allow those good things to come.

I just know good things are coming your way, honey. I just know it. For all of you.

I wish you daughter a speedy recovery. I wish you sleep and peace and more peace. And do not worry, your son knows you are there for him. He is comforted by that.

Huge hugs!!

Rebecca said...

Keep holding on to the bright spots! Improvement is improvement and that's wonderful!!

Laura, you're doing a wonderful job, even tho I know you don't feel like you are. ((hugs)) and strength to you.

And Nicole, what a bright, sweet girl you seem to be. Keep getting well and have a wonderful Christmas!

Jeanette said...

So glad to hear Nicole is improving. Sounds like she's being well taken care of. As always praying and keeping you all in my thoughts.

Scott said...

Good news, glad to hear of Nicoles continuing recovery. And Haylee's assessment is encouraging as well. It won't be easy but it does sound like things are on the upswing. My thoughts and prayers to ya'll on things improving every day.

Jess T said...

I'm sorry you are having to deal with this right now. I hope your family gets through this illness quickly.

Donna said...

Wonderful news!!! Believe it sweetie, she'll be fine!!! I just feel it...Wish we could all be there to help you through this!!! Sending lots a love and light!!!

haylee said...

You know, Laura, I am wondering if Nik thinks her staples are fixed like a paper staple - i.e. crimped together on the inside. Assure her they are not -- they are like a staplegun tool -- the staples are straight in perpendicular to her incision. However,the remover is very much like a paper staple remover -- the bottom prong is curved to easily go under the staple and when the top prong "dents" the top of the staples, they just lift straight out.

I hate to think she is fretting over these things. Removing the N/G cannot be compared to its insertion - like I said, it just zips out.

Hope things continue to look up.

Laurie said...

Hi Laura,

Just checking in on you today to let you know I'm thinking about all of you and praying Nicole gets better and better each hour. I pray that all the remaining procedures that need to be done will go easy and painless for her and that she will not be too anxious. You all need a strong dose of peace in your lives right now and this is what I am asking God to give you. She is going to be okay Laura, I just know it. I hope you can all be home for Christmas.

Love, Laurie in Ca.

Nance said...

i continue to think of you so often in my day. in your heart, you know what to do for your children. and they know you are doing your best. be confident in that. i read it in every line you write; your prose sags with devotion to your family. right now, it is everything.

The Stevens Family said...

I am glad to hear this news. I was just checking in. I've been praying for you and will continue to do so.

Ortizzle said...

Thinking of you, dear, and sending prayers. I know you will both find the strength to get through this. In the meantime, soak up the cyberlove. :-)

Shari said...


I'm glad to hear that Nicole is getting better. I have been busy with finals the last three days and just starting to get caught up with everyone's blogs.

I wish I checked your blog earlier to send prayers. Never too late, though.

She might still have babies if her other ovary is okay? Well, the important thing is for her to get better. She has a positive attitude about adoption. :)

God bless and may He watch over you and take care of Nicole and your family.

Shannon said...

When I had a uterine infection, I was told my fever would go down and then go back up at least once. Mine wasn't the severity of your daughter's, but I was hospitalized nearly a week.

If her staples are like a c-sections, they just tug and don't hurt. I always worried it would hurt and was pleasantly surprised when it didn't.

I know nothing about NG tubes but that both my girls pulled theirs out multiple times so it must not have been horrible. Of course these were infants and not teenagers.

My thought continue to be with you, Nicole, and your son.

Jess said...

Thank you for your update! I am relieved that she seems to be improving and I hope that the worst of it has passed.

Take care, Laura, you are in my thoughts.