Thursday, December 12, 2013

Spider Bite Part 3

I'll pick the story back up about a week and a half after the whole thing started.  I was home recovering with my Aunt Diana helping care for me.  Thankfully, Owen was with my parents and Cora was with my friend Claire who lives minutes from us. It felt so strange to have to rely heavily on help from others.  I'm not one who enjoys asking for help.  I would rather take my kids with me to the doctor at times than ask around for a babysitter.  At this point I couldn't even drive myself anywhere and my husband was back at work.  I literally had no choice but to ask friends to take me to appointments and pick Owen up from school.  God really did a number on my pride here.

This picture here is what my arm looked like at that point.  It's one of the least graphic/disgusting pictures I have that shows both bite marks as well as how big the total area was.  You can see the heavy pain medicine in my eyes.  At this point, I was in an insane amount of pain pretty constantly.  The venom was doing its work breaking down my tissue and I'll tell ya, that does not feel good.  At all.  I am so thankful for modern medicine. I can't imagine having to go through this without any help.  

I seemed to be getting better as the weeks went on but things took a bad turn at week 4 so I went back in to my dr.  They referred me to a surgeon because the bites were showing signs of deep tissue death (necrosis).  I was able to get in the next day and he said he thought I needed surgery to remove all the necrotic tissue.  My pain levels that had been previously going down, had severely increased.  It felt like there was acid under my skin constantly and I wasn't on my heavy drugs anymore.  (I needed to be able to take care of my kids and have a clear head.)  We scheduled the surgery for a few days later.  

Before this, I hadn't had so much as a single stitch in my life, so this was all new and scary.  I knew the dead stuff needed to be removed for me to heal properly but I was terrified of the process.  

My awesome Mom came up to stay with the kids while I went in to the hospital that morning exactly one month from the day I was bitten.  I had some books with me and was trying to stay calm.  Things got a little crazy when the nurse started working on my iv.  Y'all, I about lost my mind on that lady.  So, I've been hurting 24/7 for a month and I feel like my tolerance had gotten pretty high.  When she put that needle in my hand (that had previously held an iv not long before and was still bruised), tears started falling out of my eyeballs.  Ray was holding my other hand trying to keep me calm and still.  I didn't move anything other than my face.  She couldn't get it started so she moved to my arm.  Again with the unstoppable tears.  It burned like fire when she put medicine through it and I politely asked if she would take it out.  Another nurse came in and got a 3rd iv started and it was much better.  Then came the funny drugs and all I remember is them wheeling me in and joking to the staff about how huge the room was.  Hopefully me asking them what they would do if I pooped on the table was just a dream.  Dear God, please.  I shall never know for sure.

I woke up later and the first thing I said to the nurse was, "Is my butt showing?"  What is with me and talking about my booty?  Now I'm doing it again!

My friend, Claire, was there with Ray when they brought me to recovery.  Most of that is real foggy other than the fact that she saw more of me than most of my closest friends and she didn't pause for a second to put her scarf around my neck when I told her it was pretty.  She is one of the most selfless people I've ever known. 

When I got home, I could already tell a huge difference in the way I felt.  Before surgery, I just felt sick.  My whole body seemed to be reacting to the death in my arm.  After surgery, the pain was different.  Instead of a burning, fire, acid pain, I had surgical pain.  While it still hurt, it was much more tolerable.  

So God has shown me some things through this.  We all are born with a sinful nature.  We can't help it.  That is why we need Jesus.  The sin in my life is like that dead tissue.  God is the surgeon wanting to remove it for me.  While the process is not usually comfortable or easy, we always feel better afterward.  There are a few areas I haven't let God fully work because I am afraid of the process.  I have chosen to live with nasty, dead places in my life rather than choose complete healing and I'm tired of it.  I want God to come and clean it all out and replace it with him so I can get on with living whole.

How about you?

Thank you Tiffany Reeves for taking off work to come take care of me and the kids and for being my best friend for the past 16 years.

Thank you Mom for listening to me freak out about having to be cut open and for coming to love your grandbabies while I was in the hospital.  You are the best!

Thanks Genessa for bringing me a delicious meal even though you had a lot going on.

Thank you Kara for coming to the hospital so many times to see me.  

Thanks Amanda Davis for bringing me meals and taking me out for breakfast when I had been stuck at home for so long.

Thank you Keri for picking Owen up from school a million times and for bringing us suppers.

Thanks Emily Brown for taking me to the dr and getting us all out for a walk when we were stir crazy.  Oh, and for the awesome food.

Thanks Renee Estes for coming and cleaning my house when I could barely move.

Thank you Will and Marcy Shores for coming up and taking care of me all day when Ray was out of town.  I had such a fun day with you guys!

Thanks Melanie for spending the night and getting up with Cora at 3 am when I wasn't allowed to pick her up and Ray was working out of town.  

Thank you doesn't seem big enough for my friend Sandy.  Her baby is a bit older than Cora and when I had to stop nursing she knew how devastated I was.  She texted me asking what foods I had to eliminate and how long before they were out of her system.  She then restricted her diet for Cora and pumped after feeding her own baby several times a day.  Mind you, she has 4 kids and homeschools.  She's got a lot going on!  Sandy, each time you brought me milk, you helped my heart not hurt so bad.  You helped Cora transition smoothly to formula.  What a testament to sacrifice, God's love and selfless friendship.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.



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