Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Count Your Blessings

Too often, I think we take our lives for granted.  And when life throws us a curve, we respond as if life as we know it has ended instead of taking it in stride.  I believe I am guilty of doing exactly that.

Today, I am writing to you from Bellingham Washington.  Why, you might ask, are you in Washington?  Back in December I wrote briefly about my sister and that is the subject of today's post. She has had a tough month.  Along with the infection that took her by surprise, the subsequent hospitalization, the mental fight she had with the hospital (who refused to comprehend that SHE.DID.NOT.HAVE.THE.SUPPORT in Kentucky), the release AMA (and subsequent threat, by the hospital staff that her insurance would not cover her illness), the flight across country to check into a Washington hospital, determine the infection has spread to her blood, the immediate need to remove (on Christmas Eve) the prosthetic hip to stem the infection, the "need" of the surgeon to fracture her femur to remove the joint resulting in massive quantities of pain, the fact that they are unable to replace the hip until they can verify the infection has been removed (8 weeks from removal) so a temporary "spacer" was placed where her hip should be meaning she is unable to place any weight on the hip (seriously...stop and ponder the ramifications of this, for 8 weeks, unable to place any weight on half of your body), being moved from a hospital to a convalescent home for two weeks, followed by her release yesterday.  To sit at her boyfriend's home and "recover".  Recovery means counting the days by performing 3/day antibiotic iv infusions, high doses of narcotics, until her body tests free from the infection.  Then, and only then, will they go in and put in ANOTHER prosthetic hip.  And she will then get to recover from that.  Again.  For the third time.

So, I flew out yesterday to help her out.  I was at the airport in time. Went through security fine, got to my gate, waited for my flight to Chicago to be called where I would fly out later direct to Seattle, land at 1130 at night and rent a car and drive the 100 miles to Bellingham.  But as I attempted to board my flight, I was told that I was scheduled for the next day.  Since I HAD looked at all the flights on Tuesday AND Wednesday, I thought "OMG how could I have made that big of a mistake (and gotten through security in the process)" when the attendant informed me the issue was my Chicago-Seattle flight had been cancelled because Seattle was expecting a huge storm and they had rescheduled me for the next day.  Instead of panicking, I waited to find out what the alternative was, if there was one, and as luck would have it, they got me on a different airline, a DIRECT flight, that left in an hour and would put me into Seattle at 830 vs 1130.  Through it all, I tried to be accepting of what was happening.  I don't know if it worked in my favor, but I know that instead of arriving at an ungodly hour in the morning, I made it at a reasonable hour, even given having to drive under some less than ideal conditions (as of this morning I was looking at 12 inches of snow).  My goal this week is just to try and make my sister's life a little more comfortable. 

So, when life throws those curves, it might be a good time to count your blessings.  Because those curves?  Sometimes they just need a little perspective.

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