We’re on our last leg of our trip home…

23 Jul

Wed: 9:45am

Well, Monday and Tuesday were busy days. Monday we FINALLY got discharged at about 1:30pm. Dr. Hey had discharged Molly that morning but our nurse had 5 other patients up on a floor she wasn’t familiar with and on a floor that didn’t seem to like the fact that all the orthopedic surgical patients HAD to be moved up there. It felt kind of like they felt we were intruding on them big time.

Anyway, Philip from down in the medical equipment area finally came up with Molly’s stuff she’ll need to make life easier at home. He had to order them and wait for that delivery.

Like I had said the other day, Dr. Hey surprised us and showed up to say goodbye to Molly even though he was supposed to be on vacation!

Dr. Hey and Molly on Monday, discharge day.

This is in her “new” room up on the 5th floor. Molly liked this little bookcase to display her animals and flowers!

Molly finally felt like eating a little breakfast on Monday. Her first time really eating.

Here is Molly trying to check her email. It is very hard for her to type still as her arms pull at her back when she raises them.

Taking one last spin with Kristin, one of her physical therapists.

Dr. Hey had called ron around 12:30 and told him to have Molly and I come over to his office for xrays and a good bye shot. But, the hospital wouldn’t let us leave until we were fully discharged. Dr. Hey really wanted us there (as I am guessing he should have been home because he “was on vacation”. But hospital politics, understandably, won out. We were ready at around noon finally with paperwork signed but then they wouldn’t let us go until Molly’s stuff was out of the room. And Ron and the boys were in town somewhere at a Target stocking up on some travel goodies.

Ron and boys arrived around 1:15pm and we were finally allowed to leave. Yeah!

Getting discharged!!!

At Dr. Hey’s office, Molly got another set of “long” xrays taken. Her correction turns out to be more like 45 degrees vs. the 32 we thought in surgery. In surgery, the portable xray machine can’t get the whole spine to assess the whole curve. Her 45 degrees still is within the realm of high normal.

Here is a team picture with her xray in the background.

Formal Long xray post op taken at Dr. Hey’s.

Formal front view post op.

It was over 100.1 degrees when we walked out into the Raleigh air! And the humidity was unbearable. And there was Ron trying to reorganize our van for Molly’s belongings in this heat. I helped him and by the time we were done we were both dripping!

We hit the CVS pharmacy for filling Molly’s Rxs and by the time we left Raleigh, it was 3:45pm.

We decided originally to drive to Beckley, WV, about 4 hours away. Molly did excellent in the car and our only mandate that we had to follow, was to get Molly up and walking every 2 hours.

Here she is using her muscles to get out of the car.

In the car.


Silly Matt.

Out like a light with all her pillows!

Pilot Mountain.

Connor drawing, drawing, drawing.

One of Con’s works of art.

Matt watching a movie.

A redneck and proud of it.

And Matthew would yell out “Look at that crack” every time we saw these! It was cute!

Another runaway ramp. We heard a story about a family who decided to pull off on one of these for a picnic…and well, I guess a truck needed it…. end of story.

Dad looking pretty annoyed by my documentation of the trip.

Driving by the Charleston, WV Capitol building we were in at the beginning of our trip.

It was shortly after 9pm or so when we decided to go another hour to Charleston, WV to hit the Embassy Suites we were at on the way down. Unfortunately, when we arrived at about 10:30pm, we found out there wasn’t a hotel available in the entire Capitol of West Virginia! Charleston has a population of about 50,000 people but on this day there were over 6000 more travelers in town for a Free Will Baptist National Convention!!! It was nuts.

We drove and drove around with me with my laptop open trying to hijack someone’s wireless connection so we could find a hotel elsewhere. No luck, everyone was smart and had wep passwords. Ron found a wifi McDonald’s through his palm pilot and we headed there at about midnight!!! For $2.95 we got 2 hours of wifi access and found some hotels to start calling. I didn’t trust that person that said the hotel was full so we started calling all the “suites” hotels. We got a Country Inn and Suites number that told us they were full, but their sister hotel, Comfort Suites, had rooms and they shared the same parking lot.

So, at about 1 am, we checked in. Lesson learned, make reservations ahead. I always do, but we thought this trip home, we’d wing it with Molly and how much she could handle. Big mistake.

We all slept in till 10am yesterday (Tuesday) and then we managed to get a late checkout of 1pm. Taking care of Molly is quite labor intensive and we needed all that extra time. Plus, I wasn’t leaving till we had a hotel reservation for last night. We decided to take the remaining trip in 2 days. Less travel on yesterday and we headed to Columbus, OH.

Molly had her first trip out to an Ihop for a late afternoon breakfast. We brought a pillow in with her for her back and the folks at Ihop were very accomodating for us, as we didn’t know whether a booth or a table would be better for her. It turned out to be the booth and she did well for a short period of time.


At one point, Molly was coloring on one of the kids’ menus (she’ll often just grab the menu for the paper and grab a crayon and start doodling out of boredom at restaurants) they left at the table and she said… “How pathetic is this, I am coloring the picture on the actual menu… Someday I’ll be on a date and still be coloring on the menu!”

Coloring but also looking annoyed with Mom here.

Molly and mom.

Dad and Matt. Matt insisted I capture this moment.

The trip to Columbus was pretty. We were traveling on a one lane road through the country. We passed many farms.

A nuclear power plant so very close! Yowsa. It was quitting time when we went by and there were so many people exiting the plant they had police directing traffic. But at first glance, it looked like an emergency and we were in it! Briefly scary.

Dad (Ron) taking a photo of himself!

Where the Kanawha and the Ohio rivers meet.

Welcome to Ohio.

Car 54 Where are you?

At one point, I called Dr. Hey around 7pm. Earlier, I had figured out where a pharmacy would be near our hotel by calling the hotel. Molly’s rash on her legs was getting very blistery and was more painful than the back pain at the time. I also noticed late last night while getting her up around 3am for meds, that she has a spot on her arm too. Ugh. Anyway, I called Dr. Hey, and he said “Wow, I was just thinking about you all 2 minutes ago during dinner and was getting ready to call you and see where you all were!” So, I let him know about Molly’s increasing pain with the infection and he called us back with what to do. Infections are common after surgeries because the antibiotics they give you are so strong, they mess up the good bacteria in our bodies. You can end up with infections inside your body, outside like Molly’s, or even inside your throat (Thrush).

Downtown Columbus.

Connor looking out our bedroom window across the Sciotto river and the Cosi Museum. The Supreme Court is the building to the left.

A closer view of the Cosi Museum.

Another view of the Supreme Court.

A pretty fountain with words… We could make out Wisdom, Peason, Compassion, Truth, Honesty, Integrity, Tranquility.

We are in a Doubletree Suites and it is very nice. We have a riverview looking out with the Supreme Court and The Board of Education right across the street.

We checked in around 8:30pm and got settled in. I got Molly showered and cleaned and we settled all in to watch a movie.

I get up a couple times a night on a schedule to make sure Molly’s meds are given. We have a chart we have to keep track of them all. She has oxycodone, Valium, Motrin 800mg, Tylenol ES, and lactobacillus acidophilus. But her pain is fairly well managed.

Today we woke up around 9am and the kids are watching tv right now. Ron ran out to Subway and picked us up some breakfast sandwiches. Yummy. We will check out at around noon or so and head home to Kalamazoo.

We expect to be there around 7pm tonight, fingers crossed! Which the boys and I have decided that finger crossing must have come from a form of making the sign of the cross, thus a sort of prayer!

We are excited to get home but Molly’s journey will still be long for her road to recovery.
She isn’t allowed to lift anything more than 5 lbs for quite a while!

Lastly, I am trying to figure out a way to share the surgical photos. If you click the link below, try selecting slideshow, a little grey movie screen at the top right, to watch them. Click her for graphic surgery photos I hope it works for you.

If not I will figure it out tomorrow.

Well, I will sign off now so as to eat my breakfast sandwich and to start packing.



3 Responses to “We’re on our last leg of our trip home…”

  1. The Shufelts July 21, 2008 at 12:39 pm #

    I saw a show on pbs last week (which I don’t normally watch but was flipping the channels and the subject caught my attention) about the Internet being the biggest generation gap since the introduction of rock n roll in the USA. Well, I believe its true. I have been trying to figure out how to type a message on Molly’s blog and now have officially given up (until I get educated on how to send one).

    At least I have been able to read your updates! We just want Molly to know that she has been in our prayers. And judging by the smiling photos of her, the prayers have worked! Molly looks great! Please send her our heart felt wishes for a quick and easy recovery. Tell Molly that David says “Hi”.

    Tell Matthew that Jake missed him at his birthday pirate party but we will have him over as soon as you guys get back in town. Andrew and Lawrence also had to miss the party but I told them we would do the lake another day. We took the boys to see Wall-E a couple of weeks ago and Jake also loved it. He got a new Nintendo DS for his birthday and his Grandma got him the Wall-E game. I’m sure he’d love to share it with Matthew!

    Have a safe trip back. Please let Molly know how brave we all think she has been through this ordeal. She is blessed to have such caring parents, Lysanne and Ron you guys are troopers and I can’t imagine any better care a parent could give a child. You both have done a fabulous job.

    Take good care,

    Melissa,Dave, David, Alec and Jake

  2. Mary Beth Thomas July 24, 2008 at 2:24 pm #

    Wow, what a journey! So glad to hear that the surgery went well and that Molly is up and around. What a crazy trip home. Long car rides can be trying under the best of circumstances and there you are worrying about meds and pharmacies and no vacancies! I hope you’re reading this message from the comfort of your own home and that the rest of your trip was uneventful. Can’t wait to hear how the homecoming was!

    May God continue to bless you all.

    MB and Conner

  3. Sydney July 24, 2008 at 2:47 pm #

    I am so glad that you made it home!! I missed you so much!! Get as much rest as possible, and get well soon!! 🙂
    Luv ya lots,

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