First Post-Surgical Follow-Up
Today was a VERY early day for Ana, Jim and I. Ana actually woke me up at 4:30 a.m. because she was thirsty and I didn’t go back to sleep (yawn). Jim is taking her to Columbia right now – as I type this – for her first post-surgical follow-up. I am anxious about the possibility of them readmitting her. It’s not really related to anything specific except that she has fluid in her belly which isn’t draining (this is obvious because her stomach looks distended and also because there was nothing in the drain at all yesterday).
I also discovered – to my absolute horror – the hugest bruise I’ve ever seen on any human body… EVER when I was changing Ana’s drain yesterday. I don’t know if it was there before and I just didn’t see it because it’s on her side, kind of on her back, and not near her stomach and abdomen where I’ve been focusing all my attention. I just saw a little of it near the scar yesterday and told her to roll over, and when I saw it – my heart did a little seizure and I’m pretty sure some of my hair immediately turned grey.
We called Dr. Martinez’s service and spoke with Maria, the physician’s assistant who works with outpatients (she’s the coordinator that we’ve been working with for Ana’s regular check ups prior to surgery). She said Ana could spend the night at home, but that Jim should bring her in “extra early” today. He was already planning to get her there by 8:30 a.m. today, so extra early pretty much meant avoiding spending the night in the E.R., but leaving while it was still dark outside to have her there by 8:00 a.m. latest. I feel SO bad for them. I am working today and will be here to shuttle Emily to and from school and thus I have the much easier day.
I did check both sides of Ana’s back and there’s actually a pretty large bruise on her left side too – nothing like the one on the right side which of course is the side where her liver is – so hopefully this is just a normal post surgical thing and it’s not anything to be concerned about. If that’s the case I’ll just find something else to obsess over. I’ll post an update when I hear from Jim about today’s visit. She’ll be getting labwork done, a sonogram and a check up from the hepatologist who may also adjust some of her medications.
You may see stories about Ana in a couple of local newspapers this week. The Bluestone Press and the Daily Freeman are both doing follow-up stories about Ana. I’ll link to them if/when they are posted online. Thanks to both papers, and the reporters doing the stories, for keeping Ana in everyone’s hearts and minds – it really is important for us to have the support right now.
I also want to thank Mike Paesano, the manager of Adam’s in Kingston, for helping raise money for Ana.
There are signs with her picture at every register in the store which include a summary of her story and a request for donations. Adams is one of Ana’s all-time favorite stores. Before she got sick, we would typically shop there at least once a week (and it’s not the closest supermarket – it’s a good 10 miles away). She loves their salad bar, but will not be able to eat a salad from Adam’s for at least three months, possibly longer, while the she’s on the highest dose of anti-rejection medication. This fundraising effort was spearheaded by Nancy Swart – who learned about Ana via a mutual friend and whose son Zach is in the midst of his own journey towards wellness as he is battling Leukemia.