31 March 2008

Let Us Rejoice.

This weekend was quite a dramatic weekend for my family and friends. While a storm raged in Fayetteville and woke me up around 3 am, 200 miles away my brother woke up because he felt mucus in his throat. But it wasn't mucus...he was bleeding profusely. He promptly woke up our parents, and they all rushed to the hospital. Miraculously, the blood became thicker and darker and the bleeding stopped as they arrived at the hospital. This rather miraculous clot allowed time for the doctors to prep George for a safe surgery. Mom called me around 6 am to let me know George was going in to surgery at 7. I didn't realize how serious it was, and silently said a prayer for his safety. Mom called again while I was in the shower and Brooke answered and delivered the message to me. I believe she said something like, "Katie you should go call your mom back right now. They said they almost lost him." I grabbed a towel and ran to my phone soaking wet. That was the end of silent, sob free prayers. There were "complications" during the surgery. While they were intubating him, the clot apparently dislodged and the bleeding resumed. I can't imagine how terrifying it must have been for my parents as they waited for news. The doctors said it would only take 15 minutes to intubate him...10 minutes, 15 minutes, 20 minutes...30 minutes passed by before the nurse called and told them of the complications. I was terrified enough sitting in church. The surgery itself was rough as well. After they patched up one side of his throat and stopped the bleeding, other side of his throat started gushing. So the surgeon basically had to undo the incisions etc from the initial surgery and patch him up again. Again, I can't imagine what it must have been like in the waiting room for my family. The nurse came and told them there had been further complications during surgery. His vital signs were stable, but he had lost a lot of blood...they had blood on standby if he needed a transfusion. The doctor estimates he lost 2 units of blood...(1 unit = 450 milliliters). So he probably lost about a liter/ 2 pints of blood. The adult human is believed to have around 10 to 12 units. George is a young adult...two units seems like a lot. Maybe next time I see a blood drive I'll donate. I'm pretty much terrified of needles, but blood donors are really important. After that 9:20 call, I was pretty freaked out.
I cried until Chase picked us up. I cried all the way to church. I cried all the way through church. Brooke joined me in the crying about half way through. We cried as the pastor (guest pastor from Missouri) prayed for George after the service. While sobbing, I called and left a message on Myranda's phone. After the first message, I decided to leave another...I forgot to say he's stable and recovering on the first one. I'm sure that caused a moment of panic on her side. Inspirational Singers at the University of Arkansas prayed for him (Myranda is the chaplain). I called and told Megann. Chase called his church who prayed for George. I told Dr. Rosenkrans that I wasn't going to work on my thesis and make the Discovery deadline, so he prayed for George too. Brooke told one of her friends, who had her church start praying for him. My BSF discussion group was already praying for George this last week, and they'll be praying this week. All of my relatives were praying too. Aunt Pollie's church prayed for George. I would bet Waller's Chapel did too. The Strobels, Eiflings, Rhodes/Wrights, Murphys, Darrs, Hamlins, Hicks, Lochalas, Burks, Weeses, and many more families prayed for George. So I figure that's roughly 6 churches, a good portion of the general population of Arkansas, and a Missouri pastor who prayed for George. Mom and Dad I'm sure prayed unceasingly. So kiddo, if you read this you better be pretty darn sure of the power of prayer. You're a blessing to the world and we're all so glad you are here. God isn't finished with you and certainly has some amazing plan for your life.
I spent the first half of Sunday basically in tears calling my praying friends to pray for George. Since mom said I shouldn't drive home, I decided to enjoy life for the rest of the day. So Brooke, Chase, and I ate pizza and junk food and watched movies. Good stuff. Throughout the day, a particular verse kept ringing in my head:
This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it
Psalm 118:24
So that is what I did. After all, focusing on what could have happened is no good. George is alive, and he is going to recover. What better thing could there possibly be in life? I know we haven't always gotten along, and I've kicked, slapped, bitten, punched, and tackled him at least once during our life, I will always love my brother. Since the first day I held him in my arms - funny looking red thing that he was on day 1 - I knew I would always have my brother. Someday I know I'll have to be without my parents and, if I am blessed to have a normal lifespan, many of my friends as well. But I never want to be without my brother. He's 3 years younger than me, so I expect him to outlive me. These past 4 years of college have really changed our relationship, in a good way. I've seen my brother grow not only physically taller, but also mature into a charming young adult (most of the time). From the distance of F-ville to the Rock, I can see how he's grown and how much he's changing. I'm so proud of him...my brother who perseveres in the face of multiple surgeries, who fixes car, who always catches the most fish, who buys the best, most thoughtful gifts, who has the best laugh and smile, who loves the Razorbacks, who is handsome and intelligent,who is going to grow to do wonderful exciting things. I pretty much think he's awesome. I love George. So I rejoice in the day the Lord has made, because I have a brother and that brother is George.

Thank you merciful, heavenly Father.

Let us all rejoice.


1 comment:

Murph Bird said...

Hey Sweetie,
I am not sure what caused the bleeding on the other side...but it had no stitches. From my understanding, they typically do not put stitches, but cauterize.
Anyway, each side is now stitched up.

Today,he ate rasberry and custard filled donuts this morning and is doing better, although sleeping a lot. He refused to get up and eat lunch. Thank you and "all of Arkansas" for your much needed and appreciated prayers.

Phil is on his way to meet Aunt Polly to bring Papa up to stay with us this week. Phil had a bit of excitement today as well. A lady rear ended him... fortunately no one got hurt. Our old white Honda toughed it out without hardly a dent, but the lady's car did not fair so well.

Oh, well. Love you!