Wednesday, November 19, 2014

In the Midst Of An Ongoing Miracle


Hazel sitting up nice and tall.
This picture was taken 8 days post op.  

Some of you readers have known of Hazel's story since before she was born.  For those of you that are new you can read it here if so inclined.  Hazel's Story    The post from 2009 has some cute photos of her when she was very little.

Nine days ago she had the first of her surgeries to improve her posture due to severe curvature of the spine caused by Spina Bifada.  The surgery is called a VEPTR surgery (Vertical Expandable Prosthetic Titanium Rib).  This device is used over time to separate and lift her ribs and straighten her up.  It is in some ways comparable to Orthodontics.  In six months she will have another surgery to crank her ribs open a little more.  This will be repeated as necessary every six months until the desired effect is achieved and she no longer has undue pressure on her right lung.  From the days I worked in surgery I know that titanium is the only metal that does not cause scar tissue to form at the connection between the metal and the bone.  Thus it has the least likely chance of rejection.  It is a rare surgery but the hospital has a surgeon who specializes in the procedure.  That in itself is a miracle.  It helps to live within a few minutes now of the one of the best Children's Hospitals in the nation.

This is an x-ray of another patient who has had this procedure done.



This was a very serious and invasive surgery for a little girl weighing 32 pounds as of today. She's just barely seven years old.  Jen said they haven't actually measured her yet but we know she's a couple of inches taller already.  She was around 33 inches tall before the surgery last week. Maybe she'll hit three feet!


When her sisters and Grampa got to visit on day three,  
she was one happy little girl. 
Grampa snapped this picture.

Of course her Mom or Dad was with her all the time both day and night. Grampa was going to take a night shift on Friday but she got to come home that afternoon.   So he was spared from "sleeping" on those unlovely hospital chairs that supposedly convert into a "bed".  Oh, Jim just corrected that for me.  They actually had a better bed than the last time I was there.  Still it is nearly impossible to sleep with all the commotion.


This is day 4 and Hazel is beginning to look like herself again.  They let the kids order their own meals.  She got to call the kitchen and tell them what she wanted for breakfast.  Her choice was bacon and...not eggs or oatmeal, but mac and cheese!  She thought that was pretty fantastic.  Grampa was there that morning and said,  "Hazel don't you want something that is more like a breakfast food?" 
"OK Grampa I'll order an apple then too!"  I've never seen Hazel eat any fruit but I'm pretty sure I do know who did eat it.  Grrrraaammppa?


Julia and Hazie

Hazie was quite perplexed by waking up with a newly reconstructed body.  The first few days she did not want to move and getting her to want to get in the wheelchair wasn't easy.  We all felt like the changes were much more drastic than expected.  No one felt prepared and so days of adjusting and learning began on day two.  Learning how to hold her and even pick her up were needed.  Grampa said she felt heavier and with a different center of gravity and balance.  Coupling that with medications, etc. one might only imagine how she felt.

I was so happy that Grampa was there to help them with all the extra work and cooking and transporting of the other girls and doing the laundry.  I stayed here and fulfilled our duties and responsibilities and helped with a wedding that I had happily committed to long ago.  Dividing and conquering sometimes is needed to get it all done.  I'm glad he is such a great helper to them.  As for me if I had been there, I'd be the hugger and chatter with the girls.  The white tornado leaves very little room in his wake for an assistant.  He can run circles around most people.  He runs a pretty tight ship but he does allow Chloe to help him cook!  Now that is another sweet story for another day.


So yesterday Hazie had her first outing with Mom and things started to begin to look a little more like normal for them.  Her poor Mommy had a five day migraine almost immediately following the surgery.  There had to be so much stress and concern over this whole thing for her as one might imagine.  Thank heavens everything is going better now.  Slowly but surely the new things will become the new normal. 

Here at the park Hazel wanted to swing but it was too soon.  So her little doll, Ruby, is going for a ride.  Hazel is learning for the first time that she can use both her arms together more without tipping over or having to use her right arm for support while sitting up.  Miracle!


I like this quote but it doesn't fit Hazel exactly.  She is the farthest things from an ordinary individual I've ever known.  She is angelic, happy, determined and adaptable and full of love.  She loves her life and everyone she meets.  She does find strength to persevere and endure and progress in spite of overwhelming obstacles and she is a teacher to us all.  She is adored by all of us in our family.  Having her as our beautiful granddaughter does, indeed, place us squarely in the midst of an ongoing miracle.  Thanksgiving is everyday for us!  

5 comments:

rwmjs said...

Thank you again Bonnie for your beautiful narration about Hazel's recovery from the surgery. It is a treat to read from your wonderful explanations. Gives us a closer look at Hazel and what she is going through and how she is recuperating. Our Thanks as well to Jim for the great help he gives to them all. I know Lowell & Jen are so grateful to you as well-another Miracle worker! Love to you both! MJS

rwmjs said...

Thank you again Bonnie for your Beautiful writing and sharing with us the continued recovery of Hazel Jo from her back surgery. Appreciate your keeping us updated and closer to Hazel and understanding more of what she is going through. Also, Many Thanks to you Jim for your continued dedication and commitment to Lowell, Jen & family so it is easier for them to go through all this-Miracle worker yourself. Love, MJS

Nellie's Cozy place said...

Morning Bonnie,
Thanks for sending your email with this post attached. So happy to hear Hazie
is doing so well, and that things are going better every day. so happy to hear that. Yall truly are in the midst
of miracles with her all the time.

Happy Thanksgiving to you too sweetie.

We are excited that Dee and Jerry are
coming next Wed. nite, so we will get
them all day Thanksgiving day, then they will go to her in-laws for a few
days and come back here Sunday afternoon until Monday at 6 p.m. when we take them to the airport to go home. We are having a care plan meeting for Susan today at 1p.m, to find out about her progress and when
they plan for her to come home. We
are concerned she really isn't ready
yet but she is insistent about getting out to go home to her pets...
So........guess we will see what happens!
Take care and May the Lords blessings
chase you down the street........
Love, Nellie

Sister Susie Says said...

Hazel is your special gift! I'm so glad her surgery went well and she is now home! There's no place like home!
Love to you all, Susan

Deanna said...

She is such a trouper! How can she ever be anything other than cheerful with a loving and supportive family? I hope by now that she has made tremendous improvements and will continue to do so again after her next surgery.