Sunday, January 20, 2013

Trying to get home

We finally made it back to the hotel in time for dinner. Shannon ran out to get food while I got Sara comfortable and started packing suitcases. Her tummy was still so distended that I had to completely let the buttons out on her jeans to even get them closed!

Sara was mad she couldn't just eat anything she wanted. We knew her tummy wasn't ready for that. Shannon left for a supply run and to buy another bag or suitcase to bring all our new stuffed animals home. Then things headed downhill. Sara started saying her tummy hurt and that she was going to be sick. Historically, Sara knows exactly how she feels and we should pay attention. She started throwing up all over herself and the bed. I scrambled figuring out what to do with only Adam to help me. I yelled for him to get off the bed and into the bathroom for a towel. He knew something was going on and listened very well. I called Shannon and told him to get back quickly and set the phone down while swooping up Sara to get her in the bathroom. Next thing I know Adam picked up my phone and somehow dialed Grandma Sue. He was telling her the whole story "Grandma, Sara just threw up and it was green and Dad's not here..."

"Adam put the phone down and come in here to help me! Climb up on the stool and get a washcloth wet."

As Adam followed my instructions, I heard "hello? hello?!" He had set the phone down on the bathroom floor and poor Grandma Sue didn't know what was happening! Thankfully she didn't panic. She may have if she knew that throwing up stomach bile may have meant we were taking Sara back to the Boston ER.

The rest of the night we settled into a routine of Shannon setting alarms every 4 hours to wake Sara and I for her next round of medication. The morning passed quickly between breakfast, packing, and washing Sara's hair for the first time in a week. We headed to return the rental car. Adam really enjoyed watching all the buses.

I did not feel the same excitement about the bus. It was a rainy, dreary morning. Shannon loaded all our luggage, which was now 2 large suitcases, 1 medium suitcase for a carry on, 1 new large duffle on wheels, 2 kids backpacks, 1 adult backpack loaded to a 30lb capacity, and 2 car seats. Sara was not able to walk long distances so we were carrying her everywhere and the only way she was comfortable was in a slightly reclined seated position in front of me. I boarded the bus holding Sara and jumped up from my seat as quickly as I sat. The seat was soaking wet and my pants were now wet from my butt to the back of my calves thru to every layer I had on. By now the driver had already pulled away. I was trying to balance myself and Sara on a moving bus while yelling for him to stop. Who knows why the seat was soaking wet but he knew about it and didn't show much compassion that he forgot to tell me.

Once at the airport, Shannon unloaded all the luggage to the curb while I stood with Adam and held Sara. He asked me if it looked like we had everything. I took inventory...2 large suitcases, 1 medium suitcase, 1 new large duffle on wheels, 2 kids backpacks, and 2 car seats. Yep! The bus pulled away and Shannon's eyes lit up--my backpack! I didn't realize it wasn't there because I was so used to him wearing it everywhere. I shouted RUN and he took off waving his hands over his head to flag the driver. Adam became upset when he understood what was happening. About in tears, he screamed "Go Dad Goooo" over and over as we saw the bus getting further away. Finally after over a block he pulled over and Shannon retrieved the backpack. Adam is such an encourager and Shannon could hear him cheering!

The day just headed downhill from there. We grabbed lunch and battled with Sara's pain level. Her bowels were still trying to wake up. She was suffering from bladder spasms because of the stents. And she was hungry but her stomach couldn't handle much without feeling nauseous. I was so happy she finally got some relief after falling asleep. Unfortunately with the weather, our flight was delayed 3 1/2 hours until 8:30pm. It was going to be a long afternoon and evening.

Adam was also exhausted but I could not get him to lay down. We strapped him in his car seat attached to the luggage carrier and I walked the airport until he gave up.

After being at the airport from 1-7, we finally requested wheelchair assistance to get us thru security. Adam kept wanting to push Sara and when we would stop, he would put on both the brakes. At one point when Adam was hanging onto the wheelchair, I looked over and Sara put her little hand on top of Adam's and started patting him. It was so cute.

Once on the plane, we saw that most everyone else who intended to join us on that flight changed their plans and left about 30 people on board. We spent the next hour seatbelted in our seats watching boxes being unloaded and reloaded from the belly of the plane, as well as de-icing trucks. Adam was fascinated. Shannon wanted to snooze. Sara screamed "Ow, ow, ow, Mommy Owww". Finally in the air, I took off the seatbelt and laid Sara across a few seats. Then she threw up. Thankfully I saw it coming and was able to lean her over so she didn't throw up on herself or me. The flight attendants were nice enough to let us land with her still laying down.

The worst thing about Chicago was making it thru the airport with a wheelchair and all of our luggage. Sara wanted to sit in my lap in the wheelchair so Shannon had to get creative about stacking all the bags on a luggage carrier. That was fine until Shannon took the shuttle to get the car and the woman helping with the wheelchair told me I would have to walk all our stuff out to the car as Shannon would not be able to park and come in. By the time I got it all stacked, it was as tall as I was. Then we moved very slowly for Sara to walk. Needless to say, it was so nice to finally get home.

Sara slept in bed with us for a few days until we learned the right combination of medication to keep her pain in control. She had moments off and on of screaming in pain when her bladder would spasm or there was gas in her, and then she would throw up off and on. We also spent 9 days figuring out why she was running a fever. The on-call urologist finally concluded a yeast infection when I told her Sara had white spots under her tongue. We weaned off as many medications as we could since she was absolutely refusing to take anything, and celebrated a few good days before the next phase of surgeries.

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