My life as I knew it was forever changed on August 23, 2019. It was on that morning that I found myself being loaded into an ambulance and rushed to the nearest hospital. It wasn’t because of a car accident, or heart attack, but a medical emergency that for a person born with spina bifida could be life threatening had it gone undetected and untreated. Unbeknownst to me or my mom who helps me with my care, I had developed a urinary tract infection that had mushroomed into my kidney and down into the tissues of my thigh. I spent 12 hours in the emergency room as doctors from many different departments worked to stabilize me and get me off to surgery to remove the bad kidney which had pretty much died. Hospitalized for 88 days, I was discharged to begin what would be a long recovery at home.
Back home again by the middle of November. A slow process indeed. Did I mention I’m not the most patient person in the world? How did I stay busy being bedridden all these months? I read, and I read, and I read some more. Fiction, nonfiction, magazines on writing and genealogy (more about that, so stay tuned), and I learned to appreciate my mom’s love for old movies.
Which brings me to my final thoughts on the past 18 months. My unsung hero, my mom. Throughout my 58 years of life, she has always been my cheerleader, nurse, champion, and best friend. And along with me on this journey, we’ve cried; we’ve yelled; we’ve laughed; and at nearly eighty-five years of age, she’s extraordinary, and I surely would have struggled and suffered far more without her by my side. “I love you, Mom, and I know I haven’t said it often enough over these past months, but, Thank you!”