Thursday, August 16, 2012

Surgery, Reality Setting In, and the Valium Thief

There are times where the heaviness just sets in. It's not about depression, but how heavy the world sometimes seems.

God shines...His glory stands forever...knowledge of that doesn't change...

Reality is just sometimes rough...just sayin'.

Last night I found out about SELAH.  My heart dropped to the bottom of my feet and shattered on the floor.  A heaviness, full of prayer and petitioning, set in.

I then had a night of dreams.  It was very clear where they originated from.  They are just concerning a situation I'm not free to share and made me feel heart heavy.

Today also was our family's appointment with the psychologist that is required before Jael's surgery.

Just before we left, I ran to grab the kids something to eat (empty pantry).  I am very rarely in the car alone, as you can imagine. 

I immediately went to my de-stressor...blasting music until the rear view mirror shakes.  Ya, I'm THAT person.  The bass boomin', head bangin', crazy lady in the next car.  It releases all stress in a way that nothing else does. 

This time though it released something else. There I was sitting in our 12 seater van, window's shaking, listening to Toby Mac's Showstopper, and I started bawling....not the pretty, eyes barely red, flattering flush on cheeks crying....but the opened up the floodgates ugly crying. 

Toby did me wrong.

In less than three weeks something wonderful happens.  My daughter will start the journey to outrun Oscar Pistorius.  She will begin the journey, a blessing from God.... to play soccer, football (hey, who knows!), or ROCK at volleyball. 

She may even become the first president with a prosthesis...hmmm...a new president....(mind wandering...focus!)

God's glory shines in this.  NOTHING changes that....

I am a human mommy though.  My perfectly healthy daughter is having her legs amputated.  It's not going to feel good, no matter how straight forward the surgery is.  She's going to feel scared, even briefly.  She's going to be confused as to why we are not going home immediately.

I'm going to miss her little feet, EVEN KNOWING that this is the right thing.


When I arrived home it was time to leave for the appointment.

We met with the psychologist and the first thing Jael said to her was, "I'm getting new feet".  Apparently this impressed her.  Jael is excited, can show realistically (as much as a four year old can) what is going to happen, and tells us what she will do with new feet (run faster than mommy...not gonna take much).

The psychologist shared with us stages that we will probably face (can TOTALLY see it) of the doubt (not enough to change the mind), the reality of our daughters little feet not being there, and the joy the first time she stands. 

She also shared a little more how surgery is going to be and that Jael has what's called Tibial Hemimelia.  We just found out we were understanding wrong...not rare around I write everything down...scary. 

I'll share more about what is going to happen in pictures later.  If you want to read the details we already have shared of the surgery, you can read HERE.

We were told some very rough things.  Things like the doctors won't give parents Valium (hee hee) and to please not call the Prosthetist a prostitute by accident (I needed to go to bathroom about then from laughing so hard).

The cutest thing though (ya, the above wasn't exactly cute, but probably much needed) was the doll Jael got to play with.  It had a prosthesis on both legs, just like Jael will.

When we were done, we figured it was a good sign they didn't call for straight jackets and got out of there quickly. 

Our tour began at that point.  I'm not going to conduct our picture tour in the exact same order that they took us, so we can show you where we'll be and how the time will go for us. 

On August 31st we will come into the hospital for our pre-op day.  It will be for testing, assigning us a room, showing Jael more pictures about what will happen, etc.

On Monday Sept. 3 (night) we will check into our already assigned room.  They assign single rooms first, so if any are open, that's where we'll be.
 Jael's floor at the hospital.

This is a room like Jael will be in.  It was the first thing that we have seen at the hospital that has brought real fear into her eyes.  We tried to explain it to the sweet woman giving the tour, but....
This probably reminds Jael of one of the most traumatic times in her life, blessed... yes...but traumatic.  We believe it reminds her of the hotel room we stayed in when we brought her home from China and most likely brings back a fear of everything changing again...and of loss.

We will most likely be the first surgery of the day on Tuesday (unless there is a baby that is scheduled).  They will put her in kind of a body sock that is heated from what we understand (1 hour before surgery).  Next she will be given loopy happy medicine.  Thomas and I will then go down with her into the holding room.

We will stay with her until it is time for them to wheel her into surgery.  This is the time I look forward to the least...turning my daughter over to those I don't know intimately. Not fun...

Please know when I say this I'm just being honest.  This is NOT a doubt that God has this.  This is NOT doubt in HIS might!  This is just a mommy being human...and as truthful as I can.

The psychologist said that three hours is probably the longest this surgery will last.  It is a very clear cut and least painful amputation surgery.  They go through mid knee and so muscles and tendons will not have to be cut through (to put it bluntly).  She will be on prescription pain meds a limited time and at home mostly at night.

The family can wait in her room or in the waiting room (with a Chili's like beeper).

They may call us mid surgery, but if it's really quick, we may just be called at the end.

Again, there are MANY more surgery details HERE.   This is just the new stuff.

We will be there when Jael wakes up.  She won't be able to have anything but clear fluids at first.  We were told she may be pretty hungry.  There will be many IV's and tubes for the first 24 hours and then it will ALL be removed and I can haul her around in a very padded wagon for the rest of our stay. 

It was hard explaining that leaving her with the nurses to grab something to eat is not an option.  If I do we can EXPECT regression and fear.  Her shaking head when we were in one of the rooms said it all...fear.  I will not choose to subject her to more fear of loss during such a HUGE time...whether any one person understands it or not.  I say that because I know many of you do.  I'm not frustrated...they are SO kind...but it is just matter a fact.

I have learned that many are not going to understand that our daughter's foundation has cracks that we need to fill...shore up.  Just as I may not understand someone else's situation.  It is what it is....

Everything is now very real and very imminent.  I may cry a little more the next couple weeks (though I try not to in front of the kids).  No, I'm not depressed or doubting.  No, I realize God is in control and has got this.  I'm just thinking of one little Asian beauty and that she won't completely understand. 

I'm just being a mommy that knows everything is about to change...even for the better.  I'm just human.  I'm not a fragile flower and I am honored to be there for any one of you that needs me when a child isn't pulling off their diaper and streaking through the house.

Thank you friends for joining me in praying for our upcoming surgery.  Thank you for keeping Selah in your prayers as well.

If you've asked us about meals, we are asking that meals be ones we can throw in the freezer BEFORE surgery.  Jael is going to be hard to keep still after surgery.  We want to keep it as calm as possible.  We are SO thankful to you that have offered.

Thank you friends for walking this journey with us.  It's blessed and we're thankful to have friends standing by us.

God is good.

"Be exalted, O God, above the heavens, and let Your Glory be over all the earth." Psalm 108:5


Again, if you have a prayer request that you would like me to share, please email me (email at the side of the blog) or comment.  I will be adding some more to the "Prayer Requests" tab soon.  If you have a moment, we'd love for you to click on the tab above and join us in praying to our Heavenly Father.


  1. Our son Cav jsut had this surgery in June - the 4th to be exact. He was so ready to get shoes. He also has tibial hemimilia and adopted in Dec. Our only hard encounter was as he was coming out of recovery and he cried for me to put his leg back. I lost it, but then they got his meds under control and he did great after. In fact everyone who came into the room he would tell them about his owie and if they wanted to see it. With looks of horror I'd smile . . . cuz he wanted to show them his IV site LOL!

    We have found fun socks and Babylegs have worked for covering up his stubbies while he is waiting for prosthetics (his through the knee has been a piece of cake) the other one has taken all summer.

    Also make sure you can get ahold of a 12 in wheelchair before hand. THey don't carry them for rental anymore and we finally found one one Ebay.

    We showed Cav and the other kids Dolphintale beforehand and truly he has only looked ahead to his first pair of shoes. I can't remember if you have other adopted children, but we spent so much time preparing Cav when we got home our daughter was horrified that she was next - whoops.

    We chose to laugh (of course we also have 2 dwarfs) so we chose to teach him to tell people that "a shark at my legs" Truthfully though the time between getting prosthetics has been hard with the stares and whispers.

    We are praying - she will do great. Also I read the book 1000 Gifts during surgery and hospital stay. Bring favorite Chinese food - I gave him jello and he thought I had lost my mind LOL!

  2. Beautiful. Insightful. Profound. Brutal. Your eloquence at sharing your heart's journey in devotion and faith is only matched by your bravery in the battle of humanity vs hope. I will be praying my Guts out. I love you.

  3. Great post! Let Him hold you Kat..He's got this..Rest..fill yourself with Truth in the next weeks, and it will destroy the arrows of the evil one! LOVE you friend and praying for you all!:)

  4. praying for yall... also, not sure if you read it or not, but there is another blog that I read - the adopted daughter from China also needed leg prosthetics - hopefully it will be an encouragement

  5. Oh girl!
    I think some mommy fear is perfectly understandable--we would so much rather take our children's burdens than to watch them endure them!! You, Jael, and the rest of your family are in our prayers through these next several weeks! {hug}


In the joy of following our Heavenly Father, we sometimes choose to proceed with a whisper, a verse, or a downright matter how we follow Him, the momentum that follows is like nothing we've ever experienced before.

Join the is a beautiful place to be. It's not always easy, but then the best things never are.

Related Posts with Thumbnails