I think I’ve lived a lifetime in the last three weeks. Life is like that sometimes, it happens when you’re not looking. Then it sneaks up behind you and bites you in the ass with a mouthful of razor sharp teeth.
In the last 21 days I spent two days in the hospital due to a really bad allergic reaction that almost took my life and two weeks later my youngest was rushed into emergency surgery because of a broken finger nail.
Yes, you read that right…a broken finger nail. She broke it at the quick and within a few days it got infected. On Friday I drained it with sterilized equipment and cleaned it out. I’ve done it dozens of times before back when I was still nursing and never thought anything of it. It’s sore, but heals completely within a couple days. Not this time.
Saturday morning we took her to the Immediate Care Clinic. They took x-rays, cultures, blood draws, drained it, dressed it, put her on antibiotics, and sent her home with instructions to call the Indiana Hand Center to have it checked in a week or so. By Sunday evening I went to change the dressing and saw that the infection had spread from the tip of the finger halfway down the nail.
Monday, we took her back to the Immediate Care Clinic. The doctor wouldn’t even touch her, but sent us up to St. Vincent’s Hospital in Indianapolis. She was admitted through the ER and taken back into surgery. The infection had managed to spread down into the bone. So, she spent the next three days being poked and prodded by the hospital staff, but managed to come home with 95% of her finger. She was finally released Wednesday evening with a pic line (46 inches of tube running through her veins from her bicep to her heart) so I can administer IV antibiotics at home every day for the next five weeks. Plus, we get the added bonus of running back and forth to the hospital three days a week while trying to find time for work and school.
But I must confess it was rather fun call her High School and informing them that she was going to be absent all week because she broke a nail…I could just picture the administrative assistant rolling her eyes and whispering ‘drama queen’ under her breath.
I am so grateful and thankful to the amazing team of nurses and doctors at St. V’s who took such wonderful care of my baby. Not only did they take care of her, but they also cared about her. And that made a world of difference for her and me. She is slowing but surely bouncing back and returned to school, pic line and heavily bandaged. Fortunately, her sarcasm is fully intact and she is stubbornly trying to catch back up in record time.
Still, I think this little experience with my daughter has made me germ phobic. Plus, I will never laugh again at anyone who complains that they ‘broke a nail’.
After all my family has been through in the last three weeks, I have a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. We are happy and healthy once more. And while we will dearly miss my son who is currently deployed in Kuwait and my other daughter who is going to school in California, we shall treasure the memories of this year and be grateful for all we have.