::pack:: of fixations



life after tragedy. living while grieving. love and triplets.

1.23.2012

Anatomy of a car crash part 7

I knew I would be seeing Dr Morris shortly, since his face said it all behind the glass as he viewed my images. My stomach was beyond its capacity since I had to drink that CT scan drink & I could only drink about half of what I was supposed to. It wasn't long after I got back & settled that the whole trauma team appeared in my room. "We found the cause of the infection". I was relieved it wasn't in my heart from the PICC. "You have a huge abscess around your left kidney". "That explains why my lower back on the left side has been hurting", I said. For weeks my lower back had been hurting kind of a pulling sensation, just like a kidney infection. We talked about treatment options, first they would install drains & a stent which is the less invasive option. If that didn't work they would go in surgically & remove it. I voiced my preference which is to go in & get it out, but they insisted on the drains much to my dismay.

I was told when I'd first arrived at the hospital the Dr who worked on my internal injuries remembers my left kidney having a laceration (along with my liver & spleen). He cleaned it up as much as he could. But the CT scan showed that I had a hole in the top & bottom of my kidney. My blood was too thin (from all the blood thinners) to do any of the procedures so I was sent up to the ICU to be given Fresh Frozen Plasma, this would help thicken my blood back to normal. & put on NPO; no food or water. My stomach was 10 months pregnant + 10 thanksgiving dinners that night so the last thing I wanted was food... But I'm always thirsty. Back to the oh-so-familiar sponges dipped in water. The nurses in ICU were friendly. Some almost jumped when they first saw me because they'd helped take care of me in the beginning & couldn't believe how much better I looked & how far I'd come. One nurse said she took care of me that first dreadful night & said they had to put me in restraints because I kept ripping out the tube that goes down your throat. Blood had to be drawn & sent to the lab after every couple bags of plasma to see if my blood had thickened up enough for the surgery. In the beginning we were scheduled to do the surgery in the morning but it took twice the amount of plasma than anticipated. My blood wasn't thick enough until 430pm, I was so thirsty.

They wheeled me down to radiology to install a drain that goes through my side to the abscess & on the outside of my body there's a bag & some sort of suction ball. I was to be awake but lightly sedated. They did a few X-rays then gave me a shot of lidocaine & began cutting a hole for the drain to enter. This was very painful. When the procedure was done, the resident Dr on call in the ICU told me I could only have a few sips of water because I was going in for another surgery the next morning. I took my few sips & fell asleep in the ICU The next step was to put a stent along the bottom hole of the kidney until it healed, which was put in the next day. For a few hours I felt better, maybe this could really work. They moved me back to the the orthopedic trauma floor, not rehab with Ryan. It was really hard not being with ryan. But every single afternoon when he had finished therapy he would come up to my room & lay next to me in his jazzy, until bedtime (love that guy).

A few days later another CT scan was done. The Drs told me that it wasn't just one big abscess like they thought. The drain was helping a tiny bit but they found a part of it was moving down to my bladder. There were several pockets of infection, my body had built walls around the fluid, which actually turned out to be urine that contained bacteria. Antibiotics would unlikely be able to go through these walls. I still had a low grade fever & basically sat in a pool of my own sweat all day & night. Another drain was put in, this one 10x's more painful than the last, I literally screamed more than once during the procedure. This one didn't ever even drain any fluid out. & after a very short time niether was the first drain. I had to stay on the ortho/trauma floor for 8 days, I stayed in bed all but one of those days just wishing they'd do surgery & just go in there and get it out. I could recover on that floor and then join Ryan in rehab until he had to go home and also have one less worry on my mind.

I wondered why they were leaving the drains in if they werent even draining until one day. Nurses work 12 hr shifts. During each nurses shift they flush the drains with 10 cc's of saline, so in a 24 hr period there is 20 cc's of saline in my drain bags. One morning one of the groups of Drs came in. They mentioned how the drains were still draining really good, about 20 cc's per day. Aha, that's why they havent removed them. "That's the saline that the nurses flush my drains with, 10cc's per shift=20cc's per day". I really like that group of Drs but they didn't say anything after I told them that, but I saw a small flinch.

During rehab a few days later we were about to start my 3rd (out of 4) sessionof therapy. We just got done with lunch and I was told earlier that I'd probably be able to take a shower later (my first one since Xmas eve approximately 3.5 weeks ago). My therapist Darcy whom I love and is absolutely incredible at what she does took off the blanket and pillow I had on. One of my legs was wet. At first we thought my bags were leaking but we quickly discovered it was my catheter. Earlier that morning my aid was violently yanking on it, so when they told me I'd probably pulled it, I told them why I thought it was leaking. My nurse was called down to the gym, meanwhile my therapist fixed the problem. When the nurse arrived she didn't put gloves on or even bother to lend a second pair of eyes on the problem. She offered to take me upstairs so I could change my pants, but then I would miss out on therapy & I was just barely granted weight baring on one leg. I smelled like urine. Darcy advised my next therapists to wear gloves because of what happened. My aid came in to tell me that the drs decided i couldnt shower while my (stupid) drains were still in. I steered my jazzy chair over to where they wanted me, wearing my dirty pee pee pants & began to laugh. Like I'm wearing my dirty pee pants, so the therapists have to wear gloves, & I don't get to shower because the drains that aren't even draining are still there kinda laugh. After therapy I changed my pants & cleaned up a bit & had a small mental breakdown. The next day my mental breakdown spilled over while talking to the Drs. And that day my drains were removed & stitches were finally taken out of my right hand.

32 comments:

  1. This is so remarkable. You are in my thoughts.

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  2. Kelly, this is Valerie. I worked with you at Nordstrom......a long time ago. I heard of your family's accident. Like everyone, my heart aches for you and your loved ones. You are living every mother's nightmare (hell). I have been following your blogs. I wait anxiously for updates. (you should puplish them) Know that you are in the prayers and thoughts of so many. Keep healing and blogging.

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  3. Kelly, I am so impressed with your strength. I first heard of your story from your sister Katie on Facebook. I haven't seen you in years, but I just wanted to say that we have been praying for your family. This horrible hell you are going through has literally changed the way I look at my life and my family. Keep writing and sharing your story, you are one amazing person!!

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  4. Really? They couldn't figure out the math with the saline? I'm so sorry!! You've gone through so much. I look everyday for new updates, thank you for taking the time for your updates!!!
    Continue to stay strong!!

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    1. This equation and how they did not realize it also makes me worried yet confident you are wise enough to know what is going on with YOUR body to speak up and be heard.

      Came to you via Nie Nie and so sorry for the huge loss of your son. I am so sorry.

      All the best to you, your husband and son in this very difficult time. Sending a cyber hug that is so big and ferocious you could not handle it.

      Amy

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  5. You are an inspiration. I'm so sorry for your loss. I know how it feels to lose loved ones in unanticipated ways, but I can't imagine how it must feel to lose a child. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family in your recovery.

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  6. Isn't it crazy how you are the only one that really knows what your body is telling you. The Dr's, nurses, and aides think they know and for the most part it sounds like many of them do...BUT there you sit laughing at what you know and what they don't...THEN because of all of that you go back and have a breakdown. I am so sorry all of this is frustrating for you. Don't be afraid to speak your mind as I am sure you are. Make them listen to you. You sound like you are healing, I just hope it's more quickly so you can be with your sweet hubby and cutie pie Finn. Baby Colum is watching over you all, I am sure of it and he is cheering you on! Don't give up, he wouldn't want that. Keep trying and giving it your all...Things may be dark now, but I am certain there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Much love!

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  7. I'm another one of those total strangers. I just want you to know how your story breaks my heart. I lost my 17 month old son just 19 months ago from unknown causes. It has been a very difficult road to travel without him. I can't imagine grieving for my son while being in the hospital trying to heal my body and my spirit. Your family is in my daily prayers and I hope you receive the spiritual comfort you stand in need of, and the physical comfort too.

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  8. Kelly, you don't know me. I heard about your story on Christmas Eve. I'm so sorry for your loss and all that you now have to overcome. Stay strong and continue to heal. I know that someday you'll be with your sweet baby boy again! You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

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  9. Kelly, I'm just a person that came across your story from the news. I have been reading your blog every since and just want you to know what a true strong person you are. Your story has made me cry so much for all the things you have had to go through. My heartaches for you all and you have been in our prayers. Your strength inspires me and I look up to you, I pray everyday for your recovery and for you all to have comfort in this tragedy you have had to endure.

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  10. My thoughts and prayers are definitely with you and your family. I can't imagine losing a child and the pain that must bring. I am a bit saddened by the lack of appreciation and the distain for the Dr.'s and nurses who have worked so tirelessly to bring your family back. Perhaps you could remember them in your prayers as others remember you and your family in theirs.

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    1. People make mistakes. Medical professionals make mistakes. I think perhaps you have made a mistake in passing judgment on Kelly. My goodness. I don't believe for a moment she feels anything less than deep appreciation for the treatment they have given her. BUT, they made a mistake, and she had to let them know that. How amazing that her response was to laugh and not cry (which would have been appropriate!). She merely let them know what she understood so they could alter the treatment. I am going to remember you in my prayers. We are all at different stages of learning in life. Kelly and Ryan have learned some terribly tough lessons, which I hope never to have to learn myself. May heaven bless you with compassion and empathy.

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  11. To anonymous poster(Jan 24th 1:16pm) - Your comment is a little disturbing, not to mention out of line.
    I'm assuming you only read this recent post and not previous ones, as Kelly does recognize the angels she has had surround her in her time of need, including the medical staff.
    How about instead of preaching prayer to others, you keep yourself in your prayers. sounds like you can use some self humbling and self insight to your demeaning ways.

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  12. Kelly, you are simply AMAZING! Keep up the good work, your strength is strengthening others.

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  13. Kelly,
    i cant imagine how hard this recovery has been on you!! You are very courageous and strong. Keep up the excellent progress and the updates. Many blessings your way.

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  14. I agree Completly.. You are an AMAZING Woman and your courage and strength is Unmeasurable. You are my Hero, I mean that FULL heartedly. You and your Family are in my thoughts and my prayers. Get well soon Girlie :)

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  16. Wow. These posts are gripping and beautiful. I don't know you at all but I am SO sorry for the loss of your little boy Colum and for the pain and discomfort you go through constantly. So many hearts are hurting for you. I am so, so sorry. Thank you for sharing your story. Life is so precious.

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  17. I'm so sorry for you and your family and all that you ahve lost and struggle through. My problems are nothing. May God Bless you all and keep you in His loving care forever. I am so very sorry.

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  18. I can't imagine how uncomfortable everything is, that you have gone through. I pray you heal fast and can get home to Ryan and Finn. The rest of us understand that you love your doctors/nurses/therapists/etc. and that everyone is entitled to a little frustration...especially with all that you have gone through. Like someone else said, you know your body...so don't be afraid to let the doctors know that.

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  19. I'm another Reader who does not know you but I am praying for you and learning so much from you. You are such a strong woman, wife, and mom. May you be blessed with peace and comfort at this most difficult and heartbreaking time.
    And thank you for sharing your story. You are courageous and strong and there are lots of people out here in cyber world cheering and praying for you and your your sweet family!

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  20. Dear Kelly, Please accept me deepest condolences on the tragic loss of your son + your
    Life. What a strong, beautiful + brave woman you are. Best wishes for continued recovery...
    it sounds like you have a few rough years ahead. May you somehow find peace in your family as
    You grieve your losses. I will pray for you + your sweet family. Love, Love, Love to you all.

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  21. Kelly, you are made of steel. Amazing. I am so inspired. I just can't imagine, but you keep putting one foot in front of the other. You can do anything. Anything. Thank you for sharing all of this. May God bless you and your family. It is obvious that He already has.

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  22. Kelly I am amazed at your strength that you have been able to keep through all of this. I pray that Heavenly Father will continue to guide your Doctors and Nurses as you fight your way back to a healthy body. As a nurse I commend you for speaking up to the staff. We want our patients and families to let us know when something isn't right. Stay strong. My family and I will keep you and your family in our prayers.

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  23. Yet another stranger here who randomly stumbled across your family's story and upon your blog ... and was so impacted that I felt I had to reach out and offer whatever comfort and assistance I possibly could.

    As a fellow human being, I am absolutely devastated by all the pain and suffering you've experienced. But above all, as a mother, words cannot express my sorrow, my absolute heart-break over the loss of your beautiful son. I can't imagine there are any words in all the world I could offer to you or your husband that would lessen the pain, but I hope you can take comfort in the fact that while Colum maybe gone, he is not forgotten. He lives on in beating heart of another child, as well as in the minds and hearts of thousands of strangers like me.

    I wish you and your family all the best.

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  24. You do not know me but I found your blog through another that I read. I am so sorry for your loss and will be praying for your family. This series of stories on your crash has left me heartbroken and yet so enlightened. I will be anxious to read the next one. Many prayers for your comfort and healing and I know that the Lord is holding you in his arms and blessing you and your family every day.

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  25. WOW....you seem to be ONE AMAZING WOMAN, WIFE, MOTHER and PATIENT. I pray that I could be at least half as strong as you in dealing with this living hell. Bless you all....

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  26. My mother told me about your blog. I think that it's wonderful that you keep track of your thoughts and days by journaling them. I can promise you that there will come a day when you look back and read what you have written and see what we all see...a courageous, amazing woman of faith! You are an inspiration to many! Losing a child in itself is overwhelmingly difficult...spiritually, mentally, and physically. I can only imagine that the physical pain you are healing from complicates it all the more. And although I can't understand that part, I can sympathize with the pain of losing a small child. I do know that time~with the Lord on your side~is a wonderful thing. It is a great healer, and in my opinion, one of the very best. My heart goes out to you and yours as you all heal. Know that you are NEVER alone and that there are miracles all around you...which I am certain that you have already witnessed by the dozens! We'll be praying for you! Much love...Another Mother

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  27. Colum must be so proud of his Mama and Dad! He'll watch over and protect you always. God Bless you! Prayers and hugs for such an amazing family. I wish you didn't have to suffer, your a beautiful person. Gosh, Colum must be one amazingly beautiful and pure angel..xo

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  28. I think you are amazing and I am praying for you, and your family!!!

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  29. Kelly, every time I comment our computer freezes so I don't think any of them go through. I'll try one more time. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings with all of us and giving us just a small glimpse of what you are feeling. Our hearts are broken with yours. We are doing the only thing we can think of for you guys (praying!). I've been excited to have you guys go home but figured Ryan would probably make it home before you and so at the same time I was torn on the idea of wanting him to leave because I can't imagine being stuck in the hospital without him there and all you are facing and have faced. But it is a good sign I have to remind myself. We love you guys! and will CONTINUE to pray EVERYDAY for you guys! I feel like I owe you guys so much for the special time you gave me with Aunt JoAnn and Uncle Dale in Hawaii by getting married there (I will FOREVER treasure that special time with my Uncle Dale! especially since the next time I saw him he was so sick, and WISH there was something more I could do from so far away to help and say thank you. But the one thing I wish I could give you more than anything is impossible. Please know you are loved and we are so grateful to have you in the pack family and in Ryan's life, he is SO VERY blessed! You both are! I know Heavenly Father will be there to bless you guys always especially as you continually turn to Him. Just wish we could do more too! Lots of Love!!!

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  30. I keep checking back everyday for the next post, I am addicted to your family's recovery and your strength! You have an amazing writing talent, and I am empowered by your fight.

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