Friday, January 29, 2010

One Week Down...

First of all, thanks to so many who have let me know that they are reading this. I appreciate all of the comments that you leave, and I read them all to Tim. He loves hearing the feedback and encouragement.

I had my complete breakdown on Tuesday evening just before the basketball game. I had reached exhaustion point and found myself doing things like moving the chair out of the way so Tim could get to the computer, picking up shoes so he wouldn't run over them, expecting him home at 6....let's just say my mind got the best of me and it took off with ALLLLLL KINDS of crazy thoughts.(It does not help that medically I know entirely too much for my own good in these situations) I officially had my first ever anxiety attack. All I could think of was what my life would be like without him ever coming home. An emptiness set in and all I could do was cry. Thankfully, my mommy was here to coach me through it, Cierra picked up on it IMMEDIATELY and staggered to get Landon ready for his game, and I choked back the tears as everyone asked about him while we were at the gym. Coma cannot describe the sleep I had, even though I could have used more!

I have gotten absolutely brutalized at work for the last two days. The hospital is so busy and I slept until 10:30 this morning. Landon is home sick as well, but is doing fine...he's been such a little man, as well as Cierra being so supportive. My mom has kept everything moving along nicely as usual.

Tim's brother drove his parents to spend the day yesterday. From what they said he was a little loopy and losing track of the days. His wound hasn't had any complications that I am aware of and at this point we are just letting things heal up before they try stretching him. I routinely get my phonecall between 9 and 9:30. That is a happy time for me. I will be headed back on Monday and will be home again on Thursday morning.

So many thanks to all of you for gifts, encouragement, prayers and hugs. We appreciate you so much. Blessings to you all....

Monday, January 25, 2010

Headin Home

It's a little surreal packing up my suitcase tonight to leave in the morning. It's a hard place to be in...knowing Landon and Cierra need me at home....I need to work some, take care of some business, spend time with the family, etc...and of course I am torn being gone from here at least until he is in his chair again some in a few weeks. The bigger part of me knows every day this week there will be someone here and that brings me so much peace. This initial week it has been essential and I am grateful I could have the time with him. My plans are to go home tomorrow and come back possibly Sunday evening. I have no idea about after that.

Today the fatigue caught up to both us us! There was an awesome family brunch in the family room where I got to meet several other family members. It's sad to say that Anderson and Spartanburg are well represented at Shepherd!!! We had a sweet friend from Greenville stop by and spend some time with us today and before we left Tim got the nurse, the xray tech and the rest of us so Odie could pray for him. After that we sacked out for the whole afternoon! And IT FELT GOOOOOD!

This evening I went for a cup of coffee here on the floor and began talking to a woman who seemed to have a happy heart similar to how I perceive my own. We began talking about why we were here...each with our husbands...each for a skin flap. You could tell this wasn't her first rodeo either. I began to tell her that I had written a book, when mid-sentence she jumped up and down in the 3 x 4 room with soooooo much excitement saying, "YOU'RE THE BOOK GIRL!!!!!" Caught a little off-guard, I followed her to her husband's room...very nice man....she showed me the bookmark on her computer with my name on it linking her to articles and the book order site. It was hilarious to be a celebrity for a brief moment in time. Even if I did look like hell. I'm bringing her a book when I return.

With the worst of our fears behind us thus brings to light a specific verse that was planted in me today.
The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride. Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the laps of fools.

For certain the end of this journey will be better than the beginning...even if nothing else happened and it was completely uneventful. We cannot be angry in our circumstances. We have family, friends, each other, an amazing church, great doctors, and above all a sovereign and mighty God. Will your end be better than your beginning? How will you make that so?

Be Contagious For Christ...

Sunday, January 24, 2010

God's Ultimate Plan-Whether You Like it...or Not

Today has been a day of God's ultimate plan for us to continue to be revealed. The reasons we are here unfold over and over again. Before I get to that, I began to use this blog long before all of this ever started to bring hope to others through Jesus Christ and the random acts of kindness that go untold on a regular basis. The support system we have is too long to list at this point, but the amazing friends and family we have has left us thankful and humbled. From the nurse's aide named John that went down and bought me coffee on Friday to our friends Heather and Terri who are keeping Landon so occupied he doesn't get quite as homesick for us! Many cards and gifts keep coming, and we cannot thank all of you enough.

Today....I wanted pizza. Not just any pizza. Domino's has flooded the television market with it's new and improved pizza every five minutes, so I HAD to try it out. The delivery guy called and asked if I could come to the security desk five floors down to meet him. I was a little miffed and was contemplating asking him to tip ME, but decided to tip him well instead. On the elevator I met a woman whose husband is a new C-6 quad (Tim is C-5) and by the time we hit the ground floor I was able to encourage her and help her begin coping with their situation. Hold that thought...

Several weeks ago in Anderson, a teenager at Hannah High had an unexpected stroke. It did some serious damage. Tim was on pastoral care staff for the weekend and went to the hospital to speak to his mother who was completely, of course, distraught. We knew they were transferred here to Shepherd several weeks ago, but I had been unable to locate them up to this point. As I stood in the hallway speaking to the woman I met in the elevator, another woman that obviously knew her came up and they began talking. A strange feeling swept over me. And before I even knew what hit me, I asked her if she was from Anderson. Her face froze as she answered, "yes," and I fought back tears as I said,"I've been trying to find you." I told her I was Tim Evatt's wife, and she wept...right there in the hallway. I explained why we were here and we had been trying to find out about her son and meet up with her. Boldness came over her as she explained to the other woman what an amazing man Tim is...and that you don't even see that wheelchair. I looked at her and said..."God has brought you from a level of brokenness to encouraging and lifting up others around you." She cried again and said, "I never imagined being able to do that. Even before this happened."
We are planning on all three meeting daily for encouragement.

Lastnight I also met a man whose son was struck by a bullet and paralyzed from the waist down. I brought him to our room where we all held hands and prayed with him.

We also received some interesting news yesterday. It's been a mystery to all how we ended up on the OR schedule for Thursday. None of the doctors knew why, so we decided God had that one worked out too. We were originally set for Friday. One of the nurses told us that there were two or three skin surgeries scheduled for Friday and when they got them to the OR they were told their surgery could not be done, and they would have to come back in a couple of weeks. Tim was the last skin surgery that was done. I know. You are as speechless as we were. This gets crazier by the day. The chaplain came in today and spoke to Tim. He will be wheeled down IN HIS BED in two weeks to preach on Sunday to all of the patients and their families FROM HIS BED!!! Like I said....this gets crazier by the day!!!!

Acts 4:29-31 says, "Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus. After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly."

Good Night, and God Bless...

Friday, January 22, 2010

Rollercoaster: Day 3

I entitled these blog posts "RollerCoaster" because that's how it felt to me. Low's because of constantly deteriorating problems and feeling like nobody was listening to me, and high's to watch how God has worked throughout all of this. The thing about this particular roller coaster is....just when the ride is supposed to passes the station and keeps on going all over again! Today it slowed down enough to let me off for the time being. This has been going on for months and I am finally at a place of positive thinking again instead of anger and fear.

Yesterday when people I would run into here at the hospital would ask how the surgery went, I would reply with hesitation.."He had to have the full skin flap." After about the fourth reply of excitement, I had to ask-"WHY IS EVERYONE SO FLIPPIN HAPPY ABOUT THIS!?!!?" I was distraught, angry and although very thankful, still very worried and confused. It was then explained to me this morning that he was having this skin flap no matter what. I missed that memo. Worst case scenerio is they wouldn't have enough muscle and tissue to close it, so it would have to be left open and taken back in in a few weeks-that quite clearly would spell D-I-S-A-S-T-E-R from an infection standpoint. Best case scenerio is they did the flap and were able to close it on the first go around, which is what happened yesterday. God just cracks me up sometimes. I don't ever lose faith...not ever...I'm tough enough to make it through, sometimes I am just impatient for what His purpose is. After the news...I had the best two hours of sleep I have had in weeks!

Psalm 41:1-3 "Blessed is he who has regard for the weak; the Lord delivers him in times of trouble. The Lord will protect him in the land and not surrender him to the desire of his foes. The Lord will sustain him on his sickbed and restore him from his bed of illness.

Let the restoring begin. It has been a good day.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Roller Coaster: Day Two

Isn't it funny when you BEG God for something and you get just the opposite? Tim was wheeled into the OR doors this morning an hour earlier than was a jovial time for all as his nurses roared with laughter when he yelled, "It's NEKID TIME!!" The doors closed and there I was....alone in the hallway..not even knowing which direction to go coffee.

I walked around for a while, just talking to God. Even though I asked Him for a simple surgery....and pleaded with Him for no skin flap....the little voice inside of me told me that just would not be the case. I have known that for a few weeks. But then I had to hear the words the come out of the surgeon's mouth five hours later. I had to remind myself to breathe.

Panic set everything he said to me became a blur. Blah, blah, least 6 more weeks, maybe 8 in the hospital....blah, blah, blah...I am happy with the results. I did't know what was worse...hearing it for myself...knowing I had to tell him...or having to tell his mother. None of the above turned out to be easy.

The rest of this is not for the sensitive...people want here they are. Don't say I didn't warn you. The bone that is the ischium was very pointed from a surgery in 92. The wound was in the right groin area. Throughout the course of this the sharpness of the bone has basically mutilated all of the good there was really nothing to work with. Solution: Skin Flap. An incision that looks like a "V" from the front to the back of his right inner thigh. (now you see why we weren't excited) it's about 8 inches long on each side. The bone was shaved down and an area as described to me about the size of the Dr.'s fist was completely necrotic (dead/infected) and that just had to go. Muscle and skin from the surrounding area of the thigh was pulled in and grafted....and POOF>>> there ya have it.
Very long healing chair for many weeks....but the great news.....he can't feel anything so he's channel surfing with the sip and puff remote. We will have a central line put in in the next couple of days to give some high powered antibiotics for several weeks. He is eating and drinking great with no complaints.

So, I guess God knew all along what he needed. Funny how that works. It's been a rough ride for the past few months trying to prevent this....but now it is fixed...and let the healing begin. We so appreciate everyone's generosity, prayers, support, etc. We have a long road ahead of us...but we will be fine on the other side of this journey. Please pray for quick and thorough healing, as well as our family while we make it through this. Giving God the glory...because we know we are blessed to be in such an amazing place, and that He has been steering this boat the whole time. I have been able to meet some wives of spinal cord injuries and encourage them....and Tim just shines to whoever comes in the room! The worst is over...I will post on the days I am here to keep everyone up to date. While I am can I pray for you?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Roller Coaster: Day One

It was a huge blessing to us yesterday late afternoon when we got the call to be here a day early! A whirlwind of emotions flooded us all as we threw everything together and made it here 30 minutes earlier than we need to. Excellent attention and sertvice-as expected-as we were flooded with doctors, nurses, PT, wasn't long before we knew full well why God intervened. The surgeon and Tim go way back...they are constantly teasing each other and dogging one another out. It caught us both off gaurd when we saw his face change and the tome of his voice along with it after seeing the deterioration of this wound in just 9 days. What was supposed to be a fairly sinple debridement and muscle graft has gone another direction-we won't know the extent untill he actually gets him into surgery in the morning. I know Tim will be okay...its just seeing him so vulnerable and scared. Its seeing his face as he was transferred to his bed knowing he wouldn't be up for several MORE weeks. It's the way I love my husband and hurt for him. The way his family saw him multiple times over the years. A big day tomorrow...he is sleeping soundly and flirting with all of the nurses everytime they come in. Thanks for the prayers...I'll update after I hear something tomorrow. We have a mighty God....

Friday, January 15, 2010

Separation Anxiety

Well, as most of you are aware, my husband...a quadriplegic of 25 years....will be having surgery next Friday 2 hours away in Atlanta. I will be commuting a few days there, a few days home, basketball games with our son, night shifts, and a home to run. He will be there at least a month, and spend the first couple of weeks face down on a stretcher. Sounds pretty crazy, huh?

We serve a mighty God. He sustains us in times of need and fatigue. He carries us through times we can't stagger through on our own. And before anyone feels sorry for either of us, realize this: we are going to be okay!! Isn't that wonderful? Guess what? We aren't dealing with cancer, heart attack, stroke, and we aren't standing around in a poverty stricken country in rubble at our feet wondering if our family is dead or alive with nothing to eat or drink. We live in a country where we are free to worship as we choose. People....It's about time...we realized how blessed we really are!!! The funny thing is....if I know my husband.....the will be a SERIOUS revival going on in that hospital!!!

God has blessed us with an amazing family, amazing friends, and a church that has surrounded us with love, prayers and support in a very exhausting and frustrating time for us. I thank each of you that have contributed to this. Know that you have made a difference.

"For he has not despised or disdained the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help." Psalm 22:24 God hears us when we call Him. He answers our cries. My question we only cry out to Him when we are needing His rescue? Why not cry out to Him each morning to bring yourself into His mighty presence before you face this world alone.

I pray that we will all "Praise Him in the Storm."

Saturday, January 2, 2010


So, instead of dressing in the sparkly dress and donning the lovely new princess cut earrings and necklace my amaaaaaazing hubby got me for Christmas to bring in the new year with our insanely loud, but wonderful, group of annual New Year's Party friends, you would have found us at the stroke of midnight with our crystal champagne flutes filled with bubbly, dressed in pajamas, with our 8 yr old toasting his first countdown with the crystal champagne flute! At first we were a little bummed that we could not go enjoy the scene with our buds. My husband of five and a half years is paralyzed from the chest down and elbows down. That's not the problem. He is being required to be out of his chair....flat on his back for several weeks due to a pressure area on his thigh that has decided to go ballistic! We realized as we toasted and kissed at midnight that we could not have been anywhere more wonderful than our home...with each other....knowing God loves us so much. See, this might seem like a sad story to so many. But to have a husband who reminds me routinely....."Only God could love you more..."blesses me far more than anyone could have blessed me that could walk but only loves me half as much.
What an amazing New Year's Eve! I am excited to see what God's gonna do with us this year!!!