Mom! There is something wrong with Daddy! These are the words that changed my life. My fourteen year old daughter was hysterical, her daddy was fine when he walked into the store, but when he came out he was disoriented and could not speak. When the ambulance came, the driver told my fourteen year old daughter and my eleven year old son that their dad had a stroke.
I was 235 miles away from home on a business trip. It is a four hour drive and no planes flying out at that time of night. We made the drive in two and a half or three hours. I got to the hospital about three in the morning, my husband was laying in a bed in ICU when I spoke to him he could not speak back and he could not stay awake, I found out two days later that he needed an operation called a crainiotomy, that is where they go in and remove a piece of his skull bone to give his brain room to swell, unfortunately, they could not perform this procedure in that hospital because they did not have the facilities. They informed me that without this surgery he would definitely die because his brain was swelling down into the base of his neck, which is the respiratory part of your brain. It would cut off the ability to breathe thus killing him. They would try to find a hospital that would accept him in that condition and had facilities to perform the needed surgery, that was Mothers Day 2006.
I went home and prayed, I received a phone call an hour later that they were transferring him in one hour to a hospital in the Medical Center Downtown Houston. I'm terrified to drive downtown, my husband did the driving in that area and it was raining HARD! Thank God for my sister she rode with me she left her family at home on Mothers Day and her husband’s birthday to go with me. She stayed with me every day for the first week. She was my rock, she took phone calls so I didn't have to keep going over the story time and time again, this allowed me time to get my thoughts in order and also gave me someone with a level head to bounce things off.
When my husband got to the bigger hospital I was taken in to see the Doctor, he explained the surgery, but assured me they only do this surgery if it is absolutely necessary because it is so dangerous they would do all the tests and let me know if it would need to be done, in the mean time I should wait, when he walked away, we overheard him tell the nurse to order the tests, he did not know we could still hear him, he told her he wasn't going to make it through the night.
Well, by the grace of God he did make it through the night so they had to do the surgery. I was taken into a big conference room with a team of Doctors and told this is the surgery your husband needs here are the drawbacks, he could die, he may have severe brain damage, he may have seizures or he might be okay, but without the surgery he will definitely die. What do you want to do? Well of course this is easy right? NO because I kept thinking what if they are wrong and he really doesn't need the surgery and I have them do it and he dies because I was in a rush to let them cut into my husband’s brain. Or what if he dies because I don't do it, or what if I do it and he's a vegetable and hates me for the rest of his life because he would rather be dead than live like this.
My husband was always very active and I couldn't imagine him not being able to do what he wanted when he wanted and being happy about that, but I couldn't imagine my life without him in some form. I didn't want to be selfish, but I was. I cried because all these thoughts ran through my head in about two seconds flat what do I do.
I prayed hard while they were staring at me waiting for an answer, I heard nothing on the other end, in my mind I was screaming, GOD, HELP! I was completely lost I wanted to talk to my husband so badly, how can I make a decision of this magnitude without my partner.
Then a wise woman (my older sister) told me half a life is better than no life. Give him a chance to come back to you! Thank you God for sending wisdom through my sister. While my husband was in surgery for eight hours, several friends from church and family members sat with me and I kept being reminded of a song that we sing in church. The words simply state: Whose report will you believe? We shall believe the report of the LORD! His report says I am healed! and on and on, this became a song that I sang in my mind over and over. Every time the doctors came at me with another report, I would just sing that song and smile and inform those Doctors that my God says, no My husband would be fine, they looked at me with pity, I could see all over their faces written poor woman she has no idea ……
part 1 of my personal story
written by Heather Young