Saturday, September 21, 2013

Post Vacation Trauma & Drama & Stress

This here is a dish on real life.  Behind the scenes at the Hughes house.

* Alzheimer's.  It is an extremely sad disease, one that David's father has suffered from for some time.  He's in his mid 80's and his health is declining quickly.

On the drive down to Houston, the day before our trip, we received word of two incidents that occurred involving my father- in- law.

(Not a great news to hear when you are ready to leave the country.)

Thankfully, David's five brothers and sisters and he were all on the same page about what measures needed to be taken next.

They got the ball rolling.

* I mentioned my mom's back surgery postponement here.  Well, it is  this  Monday @ 7:15 am  CST.

We all will be so relieved when this is behind her.

Mom has been nothing but a rock star patiently waiting!!

And remember that remodel job I mentioned?  The one about building a shower on the main floor for her and moving the washer & dryer to a closet in the kitchen?


Removed washer & dryer   -  removed panel and plaster  =  a big mess!


Her "Almost finished"  new full bath  :)


Old double pantry closet set removed  +  new laundry closet being built  =  another big mess!


New closet built out  -  holds new stackable washer & dryer  =  no more stairs for Mom to climb!!

Mom is going to LOVE this new set up!!

*  Washing Machine near death is  every mom's nightmare!

So we arrived home Sunday evening and  immediately started the laundry.  A BOAT LOAD of it, too.

Holy Toledo!

Monday night my washer made a funny noise.  Tuesday morning my washer stopped washing.

Was I calm?  Hell no!

The kids were starting back with their schooling...I had my YEARLY check up scheduled  (oh joy!)...and the baby started acting funny (as in sick)...and I had to plan for my first Confirmation class I would be teaching the next night.

My beloved was on the phone ASAP with a repairman he knew and trusted.

Washer fixed by late afternoon.

A dime!  A bloody dime was stuck inside the agitator and ground the entire machine to a halt.  A dime did that!

(You should see the dime!)

*  Remember the sick baby?  No sooner did the repair leave, and I walked into the door from my check up, then David, baby, and I headed right back out to the doctor's office.

Clementine was having severe, intermittent, abdominal pain on her lower right side.  Our amazing doctor did everything she could to keep us out of the ER, including an EKG and blood work.

Couldn't find anything.

Pain subsided so she thought it might be an infection causing stomach cramps.  Watched her overnight at home.

*  ONLY through the grace of God, come Wednesday I  juggled taking baby back to pediatrician for another check, home schooling four kids, and prepping for Confirmation class (that night).

Since Clementine was pain free for the afternoon...and still thinking it was an infection...I headed out to teach Confirmation.

The entire time I was at class, David text updates of Clementine's  painful attacks.


*  6:00 am Thursday, Clementine woke up with one of her worst abdominal attacks yet.  We were on the way to the ER.

Clementine was diagnosed with a   intussusception.  (By way of ultra sound and x-ray.)

Big word.  We know!

(Affects between 1 and 4 infants out of 1,000  -  more common in boys.)

There are two kinds.  The worst one includes the colon which she had.

It tries to collapse inside the a telescope effect.  Causing the intermittent, severe, abdominal pain in the lower right quadrant.

*Left untreated, the child can die.*

Usually comes with blood in stools and vomiting.  She had neither.  They think we caught it early.

(That's the reasons the pediatrician did not find it either.)

This was taken after all the tests and needle pokes...waiting for a procedure to fix it.

Her eyes are so puffy from crying so terribly hard.  They had just placed her i.v.

After the procedure.

Our poor baby girl was exhausted :(

It was VERY, VERY traumatic for Clementine.  They took us into a room where a radiologist and nurses performed a procedure on her while she was awake.

Mom and Dad were asked to leave.

Mom cried as she heard her baby girl SCREAMING for her.

Heart wrenching, I tell you.  Geesh!

This was taken about three hours after the procedure.

She was so much happier after resting and getting some fluids into her system.

They admitted her for 24 hours since there is a small chance of relapse.  (It usually happens in the first 24 hours.)

We are staying positive (and a wee bit guarded.)

*  Homeschool.  It's at times like this that I wish I did not have to home school.  Talk about adding another layer of stress.

This is where I give a HUGE shout out to my kids.

I have some awesome students who know how to stay the course even when life gets really hairy in our house.

I truly appreciate their excellent focus!

*  Prayer warriors needed.  For all the things I listed above, please keep them in your prayers.   Especially for my mother's surgery this Monday.  I will keep you all updated.

Thank you so much and God bless you!!

~  Patty  ~


  1. I will gladly sign up to be a prayer warrior! Wish I lived closer to offer a helping hand too. I know you will receive abundant graces from all of these trials...Just hard to be patient in the meantime:) Hang in there!

    1. Thank you, prayer warrior. I'll be sure to keep you updated!!

  2. Oh Patty! What a terribly stressful few days? I do know about intussusception. It is so painful! I am praying that she is now in the clear. And good for you for sticking with her, even without the GI problems.

    Your before and after pics are completely amazing. That bathroom? Wow. It looks so clean and lovely.
    I'll be praying for your Mom and you on Monday. I'll be at church for sure. I guess I don't know what she is having done, but prayers for her successful surgery will be enough.

    God bless you for your constant attention to others. You are a lifesaver for so many! So inspiring.
    Hang in there, my friend.

    1. Thank you for the prayers, Ceil!!!! Mom will definitely need them. She is having back surgery. I linked above to her condition and what will be happening. She's a trooper and misses my father terribly at this time. (He passed away almost 7 years ago from cancer.) She sent me the photos of the remodeling job. We are so excited for her. Her choice of bathing/ showering was either two flights upstairs or one "steep" flight downstairs into the basement. Not good for her age or condition. I'll definitely keep you updated.

    2. Just wanted you to know I'll be praying for your Mom, and all of you...that all goes well tomorrow.

  3. Replies
    1. Thank you, Laurie! We will take all that we can get. (It brings her such comfort. Really and truly!)

  4. Woah! You are so lucky to have caught that, how did you know how serious it was hurting her when she was so little? I feel like I would have missed it.

    1. Excellent question! I should have mentioned this. When it first began on Tuesday, she simply pointed "specifically" to her spot and say Boo Boo a few times while wincing. As each "episode" came on, the pain progressed, and there was NO consoling her. She would flail her body something terrible that I literally could not hold her for fear of dropping her. There was absolutely no doubt that something terrible was happening. The only time I had seen pain like that was on our daughter's face after having open heart surgery at five months of age.

  5. Oh ...dear Patty! What stressful days you are enduring. Nothing tears at a mother's heart more than her child in pain. Add to that the anguish of your hubby's father and his disease. I know the heartache that causes...I am traveling that road with you. I will be offering prayers and holding your hand across these cyber-miles, my friend, for all your needs...your sweet baby, your father-in-law, and your sweet mother.

    I will also be praying for you. Please take care of you, my friend. Sometimes that is easy to forget.
    Wish I were there to do more. : )

    1. I know you know, Billie Jo. I truly appreciate the prayers!

  6. My first thought....she's still trying to school?! Wow-wee, girlfriend. don't fret if you need to take a few days to get your house in order. Praying that healing happens for your littlest one, your mom and David's dad. God Bless!

    1. Thanks, Heather. It's hard to slow down the High School classes. They are almost impossible to catch up if you get behind. Even in homeschool. I wish they were all in the primary grades and I could just stop. This coming week is our 9th week and they've been in the midst of studying for quarter finals. Thank you for all the prayers!! Every bit helps!

  7. Oh my, I feel like my little hectic week was a vacation compared to what you've gone through. And even through all of that, you found the time to read and post a sweet, uplifting comment on my little blog. You are remarkable! I'm SO sorry about everything, especially your sweet little Clementine. I hope she's better and no other problems arise. We will include you in fervent prayers for an uneventful upcoming week. :)

    1. Thanks, Haunani. :) I would catch up on blogs when Clementine was asleep in the hospital mostly. One finds a lot of time on your hands when in the hospital with a sick one and that sick one is resting. I'll keep you abreast on her surgery. Thanks for the prayers!

  8. Replies
    1. Thanks, Phyllis. I know you know how much prayer means :)

  9. Oh Patty, that's more than stress... that's agony! Oh, your poor sweet baby girl... my heart breaks for her that she had to go through all of that. Is there more with this condition or is she okay now? We are in and out of the hospital with Abigail (6) with her digestive disease. She's put under for a "routine" endoscopy every 8 weeks but she's not in pain like your little one. But I know the stress of hospitals, needles, and mom and dad having to leave the room for the procedure. It's so hard to endure. I'm sooooo sorry for you. I hope she's on the mend and wish that you weren't in for more stress and worry tomorrow. I'll be praying for you and your Mom tomorrow morning for sure. You can count on it! I pray that you feel God's peace as you enter into this next stage of helping your mom after her surgery. ~tara

  10. I cannot even imagine being on the other of the door. How terrible for you. Prayers for no relapse.


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