On Sunday, July 26 at noon, my husband, Brent was in a dirt bike accident. He had hit the handle bars and the bike flipped and hit him in the back. He took an ambulance to the hospital where we found out he had 6 fractured ribs, a fractured vertebrae in his spine and blood around the spine and spinal cord and needed spinal surgery. That Monday afternoon, he had a successful surgery to place rods and screws in his back along his spine. The surgeon explained to us how lucky he/we are and that he was 5 millimeters away from never walking again! So we are forever grateful that, that was not the case. On Tuesday morning, he was suppose to be fitted for a brace and start therapy at the hospital, but his oxygen levels dropped and was having difficult breathing. They did an X-ray which showed he had a pulmonary embolism (blood clot) in each of his lungs.They ended up doing a procedure to place a filter in his vein to prevent more clots from traveling from his legs to this heart and lungs and start blood thinners in a couple days. On Wednesday, he was fitted for his brace, that he will be wearing for the next 3 months or so, and started his therapy. He also was struggling with stomach issues which was causing him more pain than his back. I think by Sunday night/Monday he started turning around and we saw the most improvement. That Tuesday morning, he was discharged from the hospital and was transferred to Mary Free Bed, a local acute rehab facility. He was told that his stay will hopefully be a short one and that if he worked hard, he could be by the weekend. And that Friday, Brent, Ayden and I were all under one roof once again at home. Home. Sweet. Home!
I can not explain how difficult this journey was. Not only was I trying to be there for my husband, but was also trying to be there for our 3 1/2 month old baby. I was fortunate to have my mom, mother-in-law and step mother-in-law to help with Ayden. I juggled my time; majority of my time was spent at the hospital and then most evenings, my father-in-law would go up to the hospital and I would try to sneak away for a few hours to see Ayden and put him down. I constantly struggled with guilt. When I was with Brent, I felt guilty not being there for Ayden and when I was able to see Ayden, I felt guilty for not being there for Brent. Everything was a constant struggle. I struggled with letting go a little with Ayden. Up until this point we hadn’t left him alone with anyone else for more than a few hours. But now I was forced to trust that they would take care if him. And they did!
Through all this, we would not be where we are right now without the love and support of our family and the outreach of our friends and awesome neighbors. We feel the love and turn it into strength to continue each day with a positive attitude and gratitude.
Before the accident, I was just beginning to get settled into a good routine. Ayden was sleep great, we were working on a good nap schedule and I was consistently able to shower and brush my teeth. (You know you are doing great when you have a baby and you are able to shower and brush your teeth. At least that is how I can tell if I’m having a good day or a not so good day). I felt like we were all on the right track. And then the accident happened and completely turned our lives upside down. And now that we are home, I find it difficult to do simple tasks. My husband was the type of husband that would really try to help out. He would take out the trash, help change a few diapers, go grocery shopping if I needed him to, do the dishes, do laundry, vacuum, etc. But now almost everything fell on me. I not only had to take care of myself and Ayden but Brent as well. Not to sound like I am bitter about caring for my husband, I am just saying, it’s a lot for one person to tackle. But we are hanging in there! Often people joke and say that I am now caring for two babies, both Ayden and Brent. It has been almost 3 weeks now, that we’ve been home and I consider it a good day if Ayden is happy and sleeping well and if I was able to get Brent a shower and get to shower myself as well. One day at a time!