I don’t quite know what to write tonight.
This whole ordeal has sent our family into a spin, but also united us like nothing I’d ever have anticipated. I’m staying at my brother’s place, where his beautiful wife and his not-bad-for-an-oldie MIL are keeping me in clean clothes and coffees. To add some perspective to that, they’re moving into their new house this week so they’ve been packing around me. But that didn’t stop them from welcoming 18 family members into their house last night as we rallied behind Tracey at the hospital.
My sister has even flown down from Cairns to help my parents with the kids, and Tracey’s parents have been juggling time with their grandkids with time with their daughter.
And then there’s Tracey’s sister, Belinda, who has stood with me most days in the ICU waiting room, and her husband, Jason, and their kids who have been with us every step of the way in distracting our kids and willing Tracey better.
Meanwhile, Master23 and his gorgeous girl, Charlotte, have taken time off work and come down from Gladstone, and Miss20 has flown over from Perth.
I love these guys. Every single one of them. And I needed them when I broke the news to the kids about how serious this whole situation is for our family in general, and their Mum in particular. I love how they react when someone in the family is hurting and needs their support. They rally.
Speaking of which, the support from the Gympie and BFLI community has been amazing. I’ve had so many messages I can’t possibly reply to them all, and my Facebook page is positively on fire with candles for Tracey.
And maybe it’s all working because either Tracey’s run of poor luck has finally bottomed out or this is the calm before the storm. Obviously, I’m hoping for the former.
Despite the hits which kept on coming, throughout the first couple of weeks of this ordeal I was able to maintain the positive attitude I knew my wife would have insisted on, but finally things deteriorated to a point where I gave my fears permission to run amuck. It wasn’t without a reason. We’d been prepared for the worst and expected to receive it.
Only two days later we still haven’t.
The surgeons trying so wonderfully to save Tracey’s life went in to look at her bowel today, to see how things have progressed. Such is our experience with this sort of procedure and the aftermath, we drove the kids home so we could deal with the emotions ourselves before giving free reign to theirs.
But they sort of, kind of, maybe had okay news.
“Things haven’t improved with her bowel,” we were told this afternoon, “but they haven’t gotten worse either.”
For those unfamiliar with ICU, that is what is known as A WIN!
In fact, the day before surgery was described to us by a member of the ICU team as, ‘her best day since she’s come in here.’ Which immediately made me suspicious of how today was going to play out – but in the end, both myself and Belinda did a little jig on the way down to the car. Things were stable and not worse. Perfect.
Although I immediately worried about this.
The whole time I was positive about how this would work out things spiralled faster and faster towards the ground, but the moment I thought it was all over red rover things calmed down a bit.
So I’m now trying not to be so upbeat about the good news. After all, we might need another 34 days of these, with a few maybe a little better, if Tracey is to have this licked.
Which is another difference today I’m really happy about – the doctors are talking about things further down the track than the next day.
“Her recovery might take six weeks or more,” they told us tonight. By way of example, a much better sentence than, ‘We’ve done the best we can but…’
The doctors have told us if she makes it she’ll be fed through a tube and will have bags and all sorts of stuff we don’t care about – the only bit we care about in that scenario is we’ll have her.
“I hope Mummy doesn’t need a wheelchair when she comes home,” Miss8 told us yesterday.
“Why?” I asked her, a little shocked by this. “I don’t think we’d care how she came home, so long as she does.”
“Yeah,” agreed Miss8, “but if she had a wheelchair I’d get jealous.”
Odd, but not as odd as a conversation I had with Tracey’s lovely grandma.
“Does Tracey like magpies?” she asked me.
“I don’t think that’s ever come up,” I said.
“It’s only there’s been a magpie hanging around these last two weeks and it left ‘a gift’ on my windowsill yesterday and so I haven’t washed it off.”
So for luck, as well as all the candles, there’s a also a bit of magpie shit on a windowsill on Southside.
I really can’t see how she can’t come through this now.
~ ~ ~
Thank you again to everyone involved in keeping our Tracey alive and in with a chance. If you would like to do something wonderful please consider donating to one of the heroes of this ordeal – Care Flight who got Tracey where she needed to be quickly and safely. I gave them $100 as a thank you. This is a service we need to ensure continues because it saves live, keeping mummies around for their kids and hapless husbands.