Chapter 2

The hacker is back. . .

I promise this post won’t be as long as the last one, but I wanted to bring you up to date.

Shelli arrived in the hospital on Thursday; it’s now Wednesday morning, right? (My days are running together a little bit.) It’s been almost a week . . . a very long week!

Up until yesterday, she was on the trauma floor, with lots of testing, poking, prodding, and physical therapy. She sat up and sat down, wiggled and stretched, tried hard to do everything she was asked to do.

Yesterday morning, one of her physical therapists announced that she was going to walk down the hall with the aid of a walker; she made it to her doorway (about 15 feet) before finally admitting defeat and heading back to the bed.

Despite that, by mid-afternoon, we “got a raise” as my father would have said, and moved one level up from the trauma floor to the acute rehabilitation floor. Within an hour, the supervisor of the occupational therapy team dropped in for a visit, and all I can say is, he wasn’t gentle. His job was to find out what Shelli can do and what she can’t do, and while I understand that’s his job, it was hard to watch. By the time he left, Shelli was close to tears. Didn’t feel like much of a raise.

And it got harder,

A couple of hours later, we were getting ready to take Shelli to a visit to the bathroom when two nurses came in to help. When they explained they were going to spin, lift, and sit, we told them we had worked out a much more gentle method (learned from therapists from the floor below). After a fairly lengthy discussion, we persuaded them to let us at least try it our way while they watched and evaluated, but halfway through, one of the nurses couldn’t stand it any longer. She insisted on showing me the spin-lift-sit method, which I tried. When she asked me if that didn’t feel better, I had to be honest—nope. She was not impressed.

After they left, Shelli and I realized we’d entered a whole new world.

The trauma floor is full of people who are gentle and soothing and focused on getting their patients to a good place; the rehabilitation floor is full of people who are strong and demanding and focused on getting their patients past the good place to the even better (because they can go home) place. It just doesn’t feel like a better place quite yet.

Thankfully, the highlight of the day was yet to come—a shower, followed by a visit from Tawnya, her friend and stylist, who gave her a haircut. When you can’t even touch your head, a quick, easy hairstyle is a must for everyone who is helping!

As I left Shelli last night, she was exhausted. On the drive home, I thought about the past few days. While Shelli is getting stronger every day, she’s still in a helluva a lot of pain. (Excuse my language, I am country boy, after all. . .PLUS she’s not reading this over my shoulder!) And the reality that this is her life for quite a few weeks is sinking in. I have no doubt that she’ll make it, and that that stubborn smile of hers will stay strong, but this is going to be hard.

On the bright side, we are both touched and amazed at the outpouring of love and support. We’ve read the comments on the blogs and almost every comment talks about kind thoughts and prayers being offered on our behalf. Thank you! We are both absolute believers in prayer and want you to know that they are helping; we feel them.

Before I end, I wanted to mention a couple of “housekeeping” items (and you thought I wasn’t listening during Shelli’s convention speeches!).

First of all, a couple people have sent e-mails to the hospital, asking hospital officials to forward them to Shelli. While we are both touched by these expressions of support, we want to keep the hospital staff on our side, and we’re pretty sure that they’d prefer not to add “messenger” to their already long list of responsibilities. We’re telling people to check here on her blog for updates, and also to post comments and well wishes here; Shelli will get them faster here than anywhere else.

Second, several of you mentioned sending cards, and since Stampin’ Up! is a card-making company with tons of card-making people, that definitely makes sense. If you want to send a card, you can send it to Stampin’ Up!’s home office, and they’ll make sure Shelli receives it.

I did notice, however, that one commenter suggested sending cards not necessarily to Shelli but to someone else in your life who might need it (elderly, military, etc.). This suggestion stood out to me too, because I know the power of cards and know that many people don’t have the incredible support that Shelli has (thanks in large part to you). I think it would be a great idea to send a card to someone in your life who is in special need or someone who may be feeling lonely. Just wanted to share that thought. . .

Third, and this one might sound weird, especially considering that I am a pretty quiet, in-the-background kind of guy. I don’t know the Statement of the Heart word for word like Shelli does, but I know it starts out with something about loving what you do and sharing what you love, and I had this thought—Shelli would probably love it if you shared Stampin’ Up! with someone. Think of your friends, family, neighbors, whatever . . . and as you’re thinking and praying about Shelli, as a name comes to mind, consider sharing Stampin’ Up! with that person. I know that would thrill Shelli. . .

I promise that’s my own suggestion—no one from Stampin’ Up!’s recruiting department has been anywhere near me. I just know how much Stampin’ Up! has meant to Shelli through the years, and how much she loves it, so I just thought I’d put that out there.

Now, this has turned out longer than I thought, so I’m going to stop.

But stay tuned for Chapter 3. . . .