Nick’s update, May 29th 2019
Success...on all fronts.
Nick had his surgery yesterday morning at 8:00am and it was a success. Scheduled for up to 5 hours, it took just 2 to resection his bowels and reverse his ileostomy - RIP Fiona!! (Fiona was Nick’s name for his ostomy bag). Also completed during this operation was the reconnection of his abdominal muscles, which have been separated since August of last year.
His prognosis for recovery looks great and he’ll be headed back home is 3-5 days. After that, he’ll have about 6-8 weeks of general recovery, PT and rehab. A huge milestone in this journey, this has been what Nick’s been waiting for since getting home in October. While he’ll have some adjustments to make and get used to, he’s simply thrilled, and we couldn’t be happier for him. “I did it” were Nick’s words as he sat up in bed yesterday. Yes, Nick, you certainly did.
Another success this week was our celebration of Nick’s 21st birthday - what a wonderful turnout - many thanks to all who came and helped to make it a night to remember! Special recognition goes out to Raquel for the party planning and setup of this special night - from the venue to the note wall, everything was so well and thoughtfully done, of course. Thanks also go out to East Coast Railway - the band was fantastic and kept the energy going all night. Pictures say it best, so please see below for a glimpse of the great times or look at Nick’s Instagram feed.
Now, to wrap this up...
As we look out the window of Nick’s room, directly at the AdventHealth Florida Division Headquarters, I’d like to take a moment to note something. That building is one that was designed by our office. Eddie Portis, a solid rock for us through this journey, was the lead architect and Raquel was the lead interior designer. I note this because, as a result of that project and others, we all have significant relationships with most of the leadership of the hospital and the parent company, AHS. During our journey, most of those great people never knew that we were here, or what we were going through, or they came to learn of it like many of you, over time. We sought advice and comfort from some that we know, but we had neither the time, nor the desire, nor, it turns out, the need to ask for any special treatment. The care that was given to Nick and our entire family was delivered by the men and women in the rooms with us, through their own hearts, of their own minds, through their own faiths, and with their own skills and determination to not only save lives, but to improve them. We’ll never be able to find the words that will adequately express how impressed, humbled and profoundly grateful we are to have been the recipients of their commitment, care and love.
I imagine that we’ll have another post or two with photos of Nick leaving here for good, but we’re clearly in the cornfields now so some gratitude and acknowledgment is in order, though not the acceptance speech kind, as this will be a lot simpler: to each and every one of you reading this, and to all the rest who prayed for and with us, who cried and laughed with us, who helped and hugged and healed with us...Thank you, and may God bless you. We are eternally grateful.
So, here we are...Exactly 10 months from the day that we first entered this hospital, Nick enters what will hopefully be his last few days here for...well...forever (as a patient at least, as we’ll always come back to visit the friends we’ve made). We started out on the East side of the hospital, being lifted by beautiful sunrises that promised hope for the hard day ahead. We end our time here on the West side, high above the “noise” of the world, able to think and reflect on how far we’ve come, blessed to watch the spectacular sunsets that seem to hold the entire day’s energy in them until that last second when they tell us that we’ve made it through another one, that it’s time to rest easy.
It seems fitting too, that we’re here on the 14th floor - the top floor. After bouncing around this place, going up and down, in and out, both literally and figuratively, physically and emotionally, we’re finally at the top, on our way out. Nothing but up, up and away for our Superman...congratulations, Nick. We love you, son...we all love you.