End of One Journey Beginning of Another

It's 10am Thursday and Jamie has just gone in for, hopefully, her last leg surgery - please god.
Today is where they will close the "stump". I realize that is a horrible word for her beautiful legs but unfortunately that is how it is referred to by her DFD(doctor foot doctor), prosthesis world, other amputee and many other people. We'll let Jamie have her own word or words for her own leg or legs. Surgery will take approximately 2 hours and like before she was scared but I reassured her that this is it. DFD will not be doing anymore surgeries on her legs. This is the beginning to get her back up on her 2 legs. I cannot wait - to hold her, to big her a big hug and kiss her in an up rite position. Praise God I can still hold, hug and kiss my daughter.

Saturday we will go into the world of the unknown - Jamie's first of many hand surgeries. Surgery is scheduled for 9 am. One hand will be done at a time and will come across her chest to be placed under her armpit. Just to recap - the hand will stay there for approximately 2 weeks. When it is removed it should resemble a mitten. Next surgery will be cutting along/between fingers to create fingers. Then it is done with the other hand - 2 more surgeries. Unbelievable -

On a side note: A feeding tube will be placed in Jamie's stomach during Saturday's surgery. Jamie is still not getting enough nutrients to sustain her. Although her blood count(RBC-WBC) is wonderful her protein/pre-albumin levels resemble that of a malnourished person. The level is at 7.6 but needs to be between 20-40. I want you to know that Jamie's appetite and eating habits aren't bad but she still has the occasional spouts of nausea and vomitting. She doesn't like eating breakfast but she never has. Her lunch is okay, by dinner she is famished and she definitely grazes all day. Now keep in mind these levels are still very important because of the amount of healing that Jamie's body is still going thru. She still has an significant amount of wounds all over her body and now her legs will require added nutrients to heal and close.

Jamie is an awesome young lady - her spirits are okay - better than anybody could imagine. However she still has her occasional "why me's" and she should, she has every right. She sits more and more on the chair for longer and longer periods of time. Her new things is how she rolls all over while she's in bed. Every time I look over at her she's either on her right side, her left side and once I caught her sleeping on her tummy. With all her IV's and catheter still in her I'm amazed she is not all tangled up. And now when anyone comes to pick her up to go to surgery or whirlpool she just rolls right over to the stretcher. No one needs to assist her anymore.

Speaking of whirlpool - Wednesday we had a great productive meeting with a representative from each department that may have something to do with Jamie's care - Jamie was even there (oh, yes even papa gene). Unfortunately the only ones not in attendance were her Dr.'s - but they sent their notes - they are busy people. A schedule of Jamie's daily activities was created. We reviewed her meds with recommendation to DC a few. Options were brought up for Jamie's overall comfort, especially her butt. A game plan has been discussed to move forward with Jamie's recovery including getting the hell out of here (sorry!! love you but enough is enough).

Well it's now past 9PM, it's been one hell of a day and I am f*@#ing exhausted but Jamie is my hero. How much more can this poor child endure. Surgery took around 2 1/2 hours and after recovery we were back in the room by 4. Surgery lasted a little longer than expected. The reason it took longer than expected was because of this - you see at the end of her leg (the stump) there is not enough skin to cover and close wound. The fact that it is only tissue and not skin doesn't allow for closure/stitches. Stitches will tear right thru tissue. So a plastic surgeon was called in to place artificial skin (if you will) on the wound. It will be left there with no bandage changes for 5-6 days. No one but DFD and Plastic Surgeon are to touch the leg bandages. At that time if skin has not closed, skin grafts will be necessary. So now I have to tell my daughter that there may be more surgery on her legs. How things change, constantly. BTW irrigation and bandage change were done on her hands and buttock but someone in OR skipped the class on wound care because no bandages were placed on her buttock. The same buttock that is so painful, that has so many open wounds and needs alot of bandages. What was that all about. Thank goodness Allison from Advanced Wound Care was able to come in to help bandage her buttock so she could be comfortable.

I think Jamie's pain is little more bearable. I can't tell you how much pain she was in. But I'm staying awake to make sure she gets her scheduled pain meds. It's important to me that she be comfortable, as pain free as possible.

Tomorrow is the beginning of the weekend and I'm so thrilled and greatful because Nick and Roni will be here. I understand Michelle is coming, too. Jamie will be so happy to see them. Thanks for Papa for coming in, for my cousin Lissy for watching Jamie while I ran to take a shower (YEAH!), to a surprise visit from David & Melba Lucio(family friends from Brownsville). They came today after surgery while Jamie was in so much pain. So while Melba fed Jamie grapefruit (Jamie loves grapefruit) David sang to Jamie. But Jamie kept telling David he must sing louder. Next time he promises to bring his guitar. Time for me to go till later - Remember to keep praying - pray for courage and strenght for my Jamie. And Pray that her Saturday surgery goes well - Pray for her Caregivers and Physicians.