Saturday, June 9, 2012

Goodbye Hospital

Please forgive yet another post about the past. I am trying to get my memories written down before I forget them forever.

I had been given a few tentative release dates from the hospital. They had all been cancelled due to pneumonia, sepsis, feeding tube problems, etc. My first one was early January but I was still there In March. I was given a target release date of March 17, 2008.  I held on to this idea with all my might and my therapists, nurses and other staff all cheered me on. On one of my daily visits from the Doctors, I casually remarked that they would have later rounds on Thursday because of their weekly meeting. Dr. Edgley laughed and said that if I knew their schedule, it was definitely time for me to go home! My wonderful therapists, Libby and Rachel, had done a home visit to my moms and my feeling was, if they say it's okay, it IS okay.  A  couple of days before my release, I got really sick and my heart rate was high and we were worried about pneumonia again. My dear nurse, Terrie, sat in my room nearly the whole night, just taking care of me and trying to keep me from, once again, heading to the ICU. Unfortunately I was worse by early morning and was transferred. My mom was sent there when she came and we both prayed and hoped that this wouldn't ruin my hopes of leaving. (On a side note--that day my therapists came to visit me in the ICU and even brought gifts. That memory still warms my heart and makes me smile.) I was only in the ICU for a while and was back in Rehab by that night. Everything was still a go!
The day finally came! Many hugs were given and tears shed. The people there had become like family. They had seen me at my most vulnerable, had given me care, love, and compassion, offered me encouragement, treated me like a friend, and laughed and cried with me. They taught me what true charity was. One CNA even fell onto my bed with me. I still laugh about that, Amy!
I was really excited to go home or rather, to my mom's house. I knew it was a huge step and I could have more freedom to go, do, and see people. But I was scared to death. The hospital was home. I was secure there. I knew that if something bad happened I would be taken care of. I was not at all sure I was ready for real life. More tears were shed out of fear.
Right before I left, Terrie gave me a snow globe music box that has the word hope in it. Around the bottom are various words of encouragement and the inscription reads, "Find the light in every day, Jodi."I still keep it in my front room where I can see it every day.
My mom left early and Robert got to be the one to actually take me away. It was so strange to see the world again. Just driving from Salt Lake to Riverdale was totally foreign to me.
When we finally pulled around the corner to my moms house, I couldn't believe it. Family and friends all crowded into the drive underneath a huge sign welcoming me home. People obviously had taken off or raced home from work and there were about 40 or 50 aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings, nieces and nephews, and friends. I still can't believe they had come for me!
After greeting some but not all, I went inside where there was another sign on the mantle to welcome me home (my temporary home).
It had been a very long day and I was both emotionally and physically exhausted. All I did that evening was lie on my moms bed and watch T.V. and as soon as I could, I had my mom give me my sleeping pill.
In that home, with my saint mom, feeling my dad's strong presence, and surrounded by the love of family and friends, I was right where Heavenly Father wanted me.

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