Today marks two months since I fractured my left knee and 2 weeks since the surgery to remove the cancer from the same leg.
Like everyone else, I’ve had difficult times in my life. For the most part it’s all been health related. It’s hard to explain the feeling you experience when you’re diagnosed with something. It’s like your insides emplode.
So with all the health issues I’ve lived through since the age of 8 this recent one has been the most difficult for me and it has nothing to do with the physical part of healing.
For the first time in my life (and I’m old) I lost hope. In the hospital I actually told my mom I was tired of being me. Maybe it was due to the shock of the fracture, having to deal with two health related problems at one time, or just being tired and worn down from a life of illness.
When I got home from the hospital I wasn’t myself. My sister kept asking me if I started back writing. Eventually, I forced myself to open up my files and write something . . . anything. I really had to claw my way back to hope. Writing The Dance has been a big part of my healing.
So, why I’m I boring you all with this? Because if you’re dealing with something that you think is insurmountable and your hope has disappeared, hang on. Find that “thing” that gives your life purpose and do it. Even if you’re just going through the motions at first. I promise you soon the light at the end of the tunnel will get brighter.
I went to my first physical therapy session today. It went well. I’m going to have to work hard to get back to where I was before but I will do it. I have my hope back and its made me stronger than I ever imagined I could be.
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11 Comments on Hang on

  1. katielowden
    April 4, 2016 at 11:22 pm (2 years ago)

    Thinking of you and wish you all the best in your healing process. I’m sorry you had to go through that. ❤️

    Reply
  2. Tanya
    April 5, 2016 at 1:21 am (2 years ago)

    You’re so strong Alison! Thank you for sharing this with us! Love you, beautiful woman!

    Reply
  3. Jackie
    April 6, 2016 at 3:31 am (2 years ago)

    Happy to hear you are back to healing and have found your muse to write again. Keep your head up and stay strong.

    Hugs, Jackie O’Donnell

    >

    Reply
  4. Jennifer Lessard
    April 6, 2016 at 5:47 am (2 years ago)

    Hang in there Alison! I thought I had been through the worst of things when I ended up having to have my prosthetic hip removed because of infection and they have pretty much given up hope of being able to put another one back in ever because I have battled with so many infections since my car accident. My arm was amputated in the accident and there was so much vascular damage done that they were not able to save it. That and the fact that I had to be airlifted over 200 miles away so I pretty much lost that “golden hour” and if was just pretty much a fight to save my life. Well after 13 days in a medically induced coma I finally opened my eyes and they were able to take me off the ventilator once I was breathing well enough on my own. But was still not out of the woods because they were still having trouble getting a good blood supple to the amputated area of my arm. So my arm which was amputated just before my elbow ended up amputated completely to my shoulder. They used plates and pins and screws to put my entire left side back together. Well, of course, I have to get infection again and it ends up that they have to go in and remove all of the metal. So now I am only held together barely and laying flat on my back in a bed and waiting for all of the bones that had been held together by the plates and screws to finish healing. It was at that time that they decided they had to go in and remove the head of my left femur(the ball of my hip( because it had been damaged in the accident but the thought it would be ok for a few years. Well because the ball had been damaged, the infection I had decided to take up residence in it so it had to go. Now that surgery is the only one out of the 23 surgeries I had that I actually get sick to my stomach talking about. I have never been in pain like that ever. Not even when my arm was torn off in the accident. All the injuries I suffered in the actual accident didn’t hold a candle to the pain I suffered every single day for about 3 months, until scar tissue started to form in the area where they removed the head of the femur, did I actually get any relief. I was fine as long as I was laying on my back. But in the hospital they had bandages on my lower back that had to be changed twice a day so that meant rolling onto my side, which almost made me pass out. After 3 months movement was tolerable, well then it was therapy. But that was a good hurt! That meant progress. Well to make a LONG story short, I was in the actual hospital for 10 months. Then I had to have a couple more surgeries and spent another 2 1/2 years in a bed. Just when I thought I was going to get my new hip, my insurance changed and I needed to go to a different surgeon and a different hospital to see if I was infection free and ready for my new hip. Well needless to say it was the darkest and worst part of the whole ordeal. The surgeon was a quack, the hospital was even a bigger joke and needless to say they hacked me open, filled me with infection, almost killed me and then told me that there was nothing more they could do for me and I needed to go back to Mayo in Rochester Minnesota(where I originally was). I called the ambulance service from where I lived(who I became extremely close to because they had to take me to all of my appointment while I was confined to bed)and asked them to come get me, which was about 40 miles away. I tore out my IV and told them they had 1 hour approximately to get paperwork ready because I was leaving. After all of their threats, which I laughed at, they finally got my discharge papers ready. Well, about 2 miles down the road in the ambulance I pretty much fell apart. I had hit my bottom and I hit it hard. I just didn’t have anything left in me. The last thing I wanted was to cause anymore heartache for my family but I really didn’t have any control of it anymore. I told myself over and over that I’d be ok but the bottom of that barrel is not that easy to crawl out of no matter how much you feel like you want to. It was about 2-3 weeks that were dark, ugly and a complete blur for me. I plain and simple was giving up. I was done. Thank God for my family and for an amazing hospital and loving staff, I found my way out of the blackness. It’s not something I ever want to go through again. Well since just before Christmas I have been dealing with 2 venous stasis ulcers on my left leg. Well needless to say, they still have not improved much in all this time and last week they became infected. But I am just resorting back to my tactics I used back when I broke before. If things are bad I only live day-to-day. When things are real bad, I live hour-to-hour. I have not gotten so bad yet that it’s been minute-to-minute, but if it gets that bad, I to will get through that. My motto is what doesn’t kill us, only makes us stronger! So I know what it’s like to be broken so badly that the only thing that can fix you is, family, love, faith and time. It can’t be rushed. But another thing that helped me was to talk about it with someone who knew nothing about me. No idea why that worked for me but it did. Then once things got back on track and I was able to get up and into the wheelchair, I even went to the high school in my hometown and spoke in a few classes with the kids. Not only about the accident, but on other things like why insurance is so important once your out in the real world. And how financially devastating the medical bills can be and how I was so thankful that I had an amazing job previously and great insurance and benefits. So if there is ever a time you need to talk to someone or even to bitch to someone, I am a very good listener. I don’t have all the answers and stuff but I do understand and I know how dark and lonely the bottom of that barrel is and I don’t want anyone to have to be there in that dark place without a lifeline. So if you ever need a lifeline, I’m here!

    And you have an amazing God-given gift, your writing. STOP! is a testament of that! The signed book you sent me after I readit and reviewed it, then reached out to you to tell you how impactful it was to me, has a very special spot on my “shelf of honor” that I have started for my signed books. The signed books I have acquired through winning contests and giveaways are on that shelf, as that is probably the only way I will get them. There are never any signings close enough for me to attend and traveling very far is extremely difficult because I don’t have a wheelchair acessible van so that means when I go somewhere I can’t bring my electric wheelchair so mobility is limited to relying on others to push me and it is a huge undertaking. So my “shelf of honor” and my priceless treasures on it are the first thing I see every morning I open my eyes! While I was bed-ridden for those 5 years, I compiled and put together a cookbook of my Grandma’s recipes. I took ALL of her cookbooks, scraps of paper and some unbelievable/unidentifiable pieces of paper that had recipes written on them, and typed it all up into a cookbook. Well my Aunt took it somewhere and had it printed up. My Grandma’s is very well known in our rural community because of her cooking and my Grandparents had owned and operated a small rural tavern for years. So Gram fed alot of people through the years, cooked alot of food for families grieving the loss of a loved one and donated huge amounts of homemade stuff to benefits trying to raise money for people and families in times of need. The local Cancer Telethon gets gallon jars of her dill pickles to auction off every year. This year they had 2 gallons. One in the live auction and one in the silent auction. One sold for $300 and the other went for $400! So I have an overwhelming appreciation for you authors and the blood, sweat and tears you guys put into a book. So God Bless you and I pray that your healing is an uphill battle for you from here on out. Just remember that if you feel like your at the end of your rope and the knot is slipping…there is always a lifeline here if you need it. I will do anything I am able to. Like I said I’m a great listener.~Jennifer

    Reply
    • Alison G. Bailey
      April 9, 2016 at 4:37 pm (2 years ago)

      Jennifer, you have been through so much. Thank you for sharing your story. Your spirit is inspiring. I love that you did the cookbook in honor of your grandmother. You have been blessed with patience, strength and a kind heart. <3

      Reply
  5. clickclickmycat
    April 6, 2016 at 10:47 pm (2 years ago)

    Hello Alison, Thanks for the update. I hope you are doing a lot better. I realize you have been through a lot. You are in my prayers. If I can do anything to help with your recovery, I will. Be strong, because I know you can get through this. Best wishes always, Faye Gates

    Reply
    • Alison G. Bailey
      April 9, 2016 at 4:38 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you so much, Faye. I appreciate that so much. <3

      Reply
  6. gemiinii90
    April 26, 2016 at 7:36 pm (2 years ago)

    Hope you are doing better Alison! I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers! <3

    Betul E.

    Reply

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