-Written by Stan-
When we lived in Albany, New York we made the trip to visit Katy’s family in Kentucky dozens of times. We became intimately acquainted with the 820 miles of highway that separated our house from that of our children’s grandparents. Because the trip was so long, we established certain landmarks to help measure our progress. For example, Ashtabula, Ohio was the half-way point and the Dutch Village Restaurant meant that two thirds of the journey was complete. And when we crossed the Ohio River we knew that we had only two hours more until we reached our destination.
Similarly, on this journey with Katy, we find ourselves measuring progress by noting certain milestones that indicate we are getting closer to our destination (full recovery). Moving from the neuro-ICU at Saint Joseph Hospital to a room on the 5th floor on Christmas Day was a huge milestone for us all. And then the move to Cardinal Hill Rehabilitation Hospital on January 1st was another important rite of passage as was the m
ove to Brookdale Skilled Nursing Facility one month later. Yes, these milestones reassure us that we are making progress.
But on Monday, February 29, we celebrated one of our biggest milestones yet when we said goodbye to Katy’s helmet! For the past two months, because of the craniotomy and her tender head, Katy has had to wear a protective helmet whenever she gets out of bed. But surgery on Monday replaced the bone “flap” so that now we no longer need it. Katy’s head is round and solid again! The 40 staples sewing her skin together cause quite a headache but seeing Katy whole again makes it all worth while.
Alexander Solzhenitsyn wrote of his experience in the soviet gulag, that though his years in prison were long and painful, he learned to be grateful for all the wonderful life lessons that he learned while there. He wrote: “Bless you, prison, for having been in my life!”
I guess I feel that way about Katy’s helmet. Though I’m happy to put it aside as a relic of the past, I’m thankful that it was part of our lives.
- The protection it provided.
- The decorative stars that were the gift of a special friend.
- The reminder of the many who suffer with physical handicaps far worse than this.
- The way children would look at Katy’s head gear with jealous envy.
- How cute Katy was when she wore her helmet.
I wrote a limerick to commemorate the passing of a milestone. (Katy often referred to her helmet as her crown.) For those of you who are aspiring poets, I’d like to invite you to write a limerick to Katy as well. And if it’s good enough… we may share it with the entire blog community.
A princess who’s royally bred,
Must wear a gold crown on her head;
But never was seen
A lovelier queen
Than Katy the Great in her bed.
Update: Katy moved back to the rehab yesterday. The staff seemed as pleased to see her as we were to see their familiar faces. The pain has become more manageable but continue to pray for no infection, no seizures, or set backs of any kind. Continue to pray for wisdom as we make decisions about the next step and bringing her home. Thank you!