As soon as we knew for sure that Bogey was going to have to have the Furlow secondary palatoplasty, we started planning our trip. Ace and I were both going to go. Plane tickets weren't terribly expensive, so we started getting things in order. Out of nowhere, Ace decides one of us should stay home with the other kids. I'm pretty adamant, that I go with Bogey every time, so our plans changed, and tickets for Bogey and me were purchased. Every day after that, I had this nagging feeling something was going to go wrong.
Hotels in Palo Alto are super expensive. Hotels outside Palo Alto are far away. So far. With San Fransisco traffic, they seem even farther. Even though we had our name on the waiting list for the Ronald McDonald house, we knew it would be full, and that our chances of getting in were slim.
|This was the hotel in the Boonies. I felt like I needed more security than what the deadbolt offered.|
I ended up staying in a hotel about 30 minutes from the hospital. That would have been perfectly fine, except, for the time Bogey would actually be in the hospital. Normally, I would just sleep in his room, but that isn't super encouraged, or possible in the PICZoo...er..U.
The day before Bogey's surgery, when we went to his pre-op appointment, the cardiac anesthesiologist heard some rattling in Bogey's lung. The surgeon also heard some rattle, but didn't seem to worry so much because Bogey was acting fine. He told us to go ahead and come in the following day as if we were going to have surgery. They would listen to him again, and make a final decision. Again, the anesthesiologist listened to him, and told me not to get my hopes up, and check into changing flight tickets. I was so distraught.
Bogey and I headed on our journey back to the hotel in the wilderness. In our room, I dropped to my knees. I poured my heart out in prayer, explaining that even though I looked upset on the outside with all the tears, in my heart I really truly trusted in Heavenly Father's will. I knew He knew what was best for Bogey, and for our family. I also prayed again that we would be able to somehow get into the RMD, if we went ahead with surgery.
The next morning, we woke up early and headed to the hospital, as if we were going to surgery. We checked in, and the anesthesiologist came to listen to Bogey. She heard nothing. The NP came and listened to Bogey. No rattle. About 4 other doctors/ nurses listened to his lungs. Clear as a bell. They whisked him away to surgery before I had time to panic, grow that ever invasive pit in my stomach, or even inhale enough Diet Coke to get me through. Now, had I not prayed and asked for clear lungs if it was safe, I would have thought this hospital had fooled me, to save the social worker from having to deal with me!
After lots of pacing, and Diet Coke, the surgeon came to tell me everything went well and that Bogey would be taken to the regular recovery floor. He told me I just needed to wait for a few minutes for the nurses to get the room ready. I waited and waited. About 45 minutes passed and again, the surgeon came in to the waiting room to talk to me. I thought it was strange that he would come in twice. He told me that they decided to take Bogey to ICU instead, so they could watch him closer. He was having a hard time with his oxygen levels.
My first thought was that hotel so far away. How would I get to the hospital overnight if I was so far away? The invasive pit had grown. Panic had settled in and taken hold of my heart. When we were finally reunited in the PICU, Bogey was being prepped for an EKG. Apparently, he de-satted (I don't know if that's a real word, if you're a medical guru, sorry if you're cringing right now.) to below 20. I was not super excited about that at all.
After Bogey had fallen asleep, I snuck out and headed to the far away land to our hotel. As soon as I got there, all of the sudden, all of my emotions dumped out. I had just hung up the phone with my sister, and I missed being home. I felt lonely, scared, and something else that I can't describe--maybe like the adversary doing a victory dance on my heart. I started bawling. I could not stop.
Waiting for me at the front desk, was a box. I took it to my room, opened it, and continued bawling. My dearest friends had sent me the sweetest messages, quotes, pictures, Oreos, Nike, and chips as a reminder to me that they were there for me, and were thinking of us. Could the timing on that be any more perfect?
I slept for a couple of hours, showered, and headed back to the hospital. Bogey was swollen and puffy. He was retaining a lot of fluid, and he wasn't interested in drinking or eating anything. He was ticked that I had left him, and even more mad that he had woken up in the same noisy place.
My mom called me. She had talked to my sister (who I was talking to en route to never never land). She told me she didn't feel good about where I was staying, and that she would find me another place. That very second the angel from social work waltzed in. Karen Jensen. Everyone needs a shirt with her picture on it.) I explained to her my situation, and because she knows me in both my mellow mode and maniac mode, she pulled all the right strings to get a hotel just a mere 6 minutes away (she prefers me in mellow mode). Soon after, I got word that there was an opening at the Ronald McDonald House for the following night until I leave on Wednesday.
As soon as Bogey fell back to sleep, I left to check out of the far off place. I returned in time to visit with Stacy--a friend we met here 3 years ago. Usually people you're acquainted with for only a month, can be forgotten. That has not been the case with any of the friends we've met here. We think about them often. We pray for them daily. Stacy and her family have been through far more than anyone else I know, and they remain faithful. I have learned a lot from their example. That afternoon, Stacy and her daughter brought me a salad. Sometimes when I'm here, I literally forget to eat. I'm never hungry because that pit takes up a lot of space in my stomach. I felt a new wave of hope and energy by the end of the day. Mostly because of the salad, but also because there was finally room upstairs, out of ICU, for Bogey.
In the meantime, Gimme called me in tears telling me that her tummy hurt. I knew right away, it was genuine pain. Ace had mentioned she had been feeling sick, so he kept her home from school, and tried to get her to rest. While he was picking the other kids up from school, I called the doctors office and scheduled an appointment. I felt an urgency to get her in. When Ace got home, I told him he needed to get her in. Double Bogey had just broken 12 eggs on the kitchen floor, and Ace was trying to get that cleaned up while trying to help Gimme get out the door (Welcome to my every single day, buddy). I didn't hear anything else about it...
...Until about the time Bogey was getting transferred to regular recovery. I got a voice mail from the doctor that said, "Hey, Your daughter has appendicitis, so call me back so we can make a plan to get that taken care of." That familiar nagging feeling reared its ugly head. However, within minutes, our kids were cared for, Ace and Gimme were at the hospital, and then it was over. So many people texted or called me, volunteering to help. Our friend took dinner out to Ace and kept him company. Gimme got out of surgery and went home. She was so excited to have visitors when she woke up. She was also very pleased that she got to ride in a wheelchair twice. I was here in Palo Alto wondering how life flight worked, and if my chances would be better getting Gimme on the life flight to CA, or if Bogey and I could take it to Idaho Falls.
By the end of the night, I had had it. Bogey fell asleep late, so I was even more grateful that I was able to move into a closer hotel. I decided that I want my bedroom to look just like the room I stayed in. Each time I come out here, the Cardinal in me grows, and I become a bigger fan. If we ever have another son, we will name him Stanford. If we ever have another daughter, we will name her Cardinal. (All you pregnant people struggling to decide on names--You're Welcome.) I slept so deeply and comfortably, that when my alarm went off it actually startled me.
Bogey was discharged from the hospital this afternoon. We have cozied up to the $.25 Diet Coke, and the familiar surroundings of the RMD. Being here brings back so many memories--both good and bad. But there is peace here--such humble people, in humbling circumstances.
Every single day, something has happened, that has been a direct, clear answer to my prayers. These are not mere coincidences. This is the Lord in the details of my life. This is God, hearing me, knowing exactly what I need, when I need it, and delivering it to be me in the most perfect way. The night before I flew out, Ace gave me a priesthood blessing and in that blessing he promised me that my testimony would be strengthened throughout the time I was here. Indeed it has.
'Ere you left your room this morning, did you think you to pray? (https://www.lds.org/music/library/hymns/did-you-think-to-pray?lang=eng)