March 29, 2018

Surgery and More Surgery

When I arrived at the hospital in Lakeland, I was prepped for surgery on my femur and shoulder. I was under the care of Dr. Shenkman, and I remember him asking me questions about the procedure.

I didn’t know the answers.

All I told him was to treat me as if I was his daughter, and that is what he did.

Such an amazing man.

Apparently, there is a limit to how long a patient can be under anesthesia, so the doctors worked to fix my femur and shoulder first. Then three days later, surgery was performed on my hand.

By this time, my mom was at the hospital. She was in Idaho at the time of the accident and immediately caught a flight to Florida. The next day, March 4th, my dad, and grandpa arrived, followed by my sister from Dallas.

I would be in the hospital for eight days.

Hospitals are rarely fun, but I have some fond memories of those eight days. The kindness showed to me by two nurses who took care of me – we are still friends – was amazing. I know my recovery was improved due to their warmth. I remember watching the NCAA basketball tournament with my dad and chewing fruity gum. One more fun thing about me – you will notice that I always chew gum. I could not eat in the hospital, but my dad brought me a wide variety of fruity gum to chew to help with the hunger pains. Strawberry Kiwi is my favorite!

I was told before I was discharged that I would be reliant on a wheelchair for the rest of my life. While that was not a happy memory, I told my doctors and nurses I would run a 5k within one year. They told me to set a realistic goal.

I didn’t know how serious I was.

Next, comes the healing and rehabilitation to make my promise a reality.