The following was an entry on my caring bridge journal:
MONDAY, MARCH 24, 2008 08:01 AM
When Mike had his surgery last week, the surgeons had to lay him face down in order to get to the artery in the back of his knee. Fluid built up in his face and when we saw him the next day he looked like Jay Leno's twin. The swelling has gone down but now he has a huge blister on his chin that is oozing something we won't discuss in great detail.
Yesterday, Mike's mom made a nice Easter dinner and brought it to the hospital for me, Mike and the kids to enjoy. Something was mentioned about Mike's chin and Job wanted to know what happened. The following is the conversation that took place.
Job: Yeah Dad, what happened to your chin?
Mike: Well, when I had surgery the other day the doctors had to roll me on my belly and I was face down on the table...(he continues explaining for what seemed like way too long to Job.)
Job: (brief silence as if he's going to say something about it, then he asks...) Can I have another piece of ham?
Mike: Well, at least they still have their appetites.
Having the kids here definitely makes life sweeter. Mike is still able to smile through all the pain and the kids are able to see that daddy is going to be OK. I won't lie and say it's a piece of cake. Things have been tough. I think it's important for me to give a good report here, but the reality of the matter is that Mike hasn't gotten out of the hospital bed since March 4, with the exception of sliding into a hospital chair or onto some sort of medical contraption.
I keep hearing that 'he's going to make a 100% recovery' and 'he's healing nicely,' and 'you'll be home in no time.' Of course, no one has mentioned whether or not that will be before or after he's able to walk again. Mike doesn't complain. I think I do enough of that for both of us. He wants to go home and that's all he's concentrating on. I want him to do all the things he did before the incident and that's all I'm focusing on.
When Mike signed his name on the line to enter a life of service to the government, no one had to mention the price he was about to pay. He knew. I knew. Yet, we certainly weren't prepared for any of this. Many have mentioned how lucky Mike was to come out of this alive, but I don't consider it luck at all. Contrary to what some may think, God is still very much a part of our lives. It's taken me years to realize that bad things still happen to God's children and not because they deserve it or because they're living in sin (insert eye roll) but because we need to experience even the most horrid of tragedies in order to be there for one another.
I certainly can't own this tragedy. This is Mike's tragedy. He experienced it. He's living it. I'm simply going to be there for him while he's going through it. I appreciate all of you out there, who are thinking of him and aching for him. Even though, you can't be here with him, you're still there for him and his knowing that is making the road to recovery a lot less bumpy.
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