Saturday, August 22, 2009
*Update: Carley is going home from the hospital today, Friday 8/28.
My Silver Lining Needs Help
My Mother's death has been a dark cloud in my life this year... her illness the two years prior. But there is always a silver lining to each dark cloud. Silver linings come in many shapes and sizes. As I announced a few weeks ago, my father remarried. His wife, Judy, is a mother of 3 and "Nanny" to 4 (with #5 one the way.) I have new family. Judy was a friend before she was family. Did you know my parents named Judy & her first husband Jim as my brother & sisters' guardians in their will, if my parents had both died before we were 18? Not my grandparents... not my Dad's brothers... Judy & Jim. Growing up Judy's daughter was a good friend of mine... as good of a friend as you can be at 5. It was fun to visit her when we would return to Michigan. Her parents had a pool... how cool was it to have a pool??? Totally! And she was pretty and fun and had her own room. We were pen pals until high school... when we abandoned the ritual for boys & cheerleading & driving in cars with friends. She began her family before I did and I watched it grow through annual Christmas cards from her parents to mine. A daughter followed by two sons and another baby girl as the caboose. Now... all these years later we are both the mother of four... and old friends reunited when my Dad married her Mom... sisters of sorts... a silver lining.
I mentioned my old friend turned sister has four children. More family. I tell you this today to ask you to pray for her oldest daughter, Carley. Seventeen-years-old and a rising high school senior, Carley is active in sports and recently became aggravated by a sore right arm. Thinking it was probably a sports related injury, her mom & dad consulted a doctor. Physical therapy was prescribed. After several weeks there was no improvement. Tingling and loss of feeling began to develop in the hand. The therapy actually seemed to make the pain worse. The surgeon who operated on my friend's hand for carpal tunnel was contacted. The appointment at his office revealed a series of blood clots in her forearm resulting from THORACIC OUTLET SYNDROME. She was immediately admitted to the local hospital in Kalamazoo where she was started on heparin to try to dissolve the clots. After 2 days and 2 angiograms doctors realized the clots were not resolving and her condition was worsening and she was life flighted to Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit where she had emergency by-pass surgery of the artery in her arm. The progress has not been good. She has endured several more surgeries, including another emergency surgery when the by-pass formed a clot leaving little blood flowing into her hand. We are asking for prayer that her hand will be saved. Doctors fear that her fingertips may already be lost... and are waiting to see how much more of the hand may not have enough blood flow to sustain it. She was moved to a regular room today after spending more than a week in Intensive Care. She will undergo more surgery tomorrow... a skin graft will be preformed to close the wound on her forearm.
When I was seventeen I was worried about how high I could tease my bangs and being the tallest girl on my cheerleading squad. The summer before my senior year I was worried about getting a good parking space and passing Mrs. Wilde's english class. My biggest horrors were not being allowed to go to Panama City Beach for spring break and having to drive my Mom's hand-me-down station wagon. Though those things may have seemed like big things... they were really small beans compared to losing part of one's self... literally. I can't imagine the challenge it would be to accept such Providence. Please pray. Pray for the miraculous restoration of Carley's right hand. Pray for her to accept the outcome. Pray for strength for her parents... can you moms and dads out there even imagine watching your child go through what they have over the past 10 days??? Pray for grace and hope and wisdom. Thank you friends.