Rewind. It’s the night before my appointment with Dr. Park. My husband is sleeping next to me. I’m laying in the dark, wide-awake. My mind is racing. I’m going over all the what-ifs that tomorrow could bring. My body is exhausted but I just can’t seem to sleep.
So, I do what anyone would do in my situation? I whip out my phone and find something to read until I can quiet my mind. What I found is the last thing I would have ever expected to see was this…
It took me 32 years to discover SDR and now the night before I am meeting with Dr. Park I read an article all about the success of SDR. What the what?!?!?
I took it as a God “wink”. As if he’s calling down from the heaven’s to say…
You’re on the right track.
It will all be ok.
And with that, I did.
As my husband drove us to St. Louis Children’s Hospital the next morning, I was texting my Mom. I couldn’t wait to tell her about article I read the night before. The impact of this article proved to be so much more than I could have known at the time.
There were very few people in my life that knew that I was going to St. Louis for this consultation. I am such an emotional person and when it came to all things SDR I felt raw. The depth of what this could mean for my future was more than I could articulate beyond tears. What if everyone knew that I invested so much emotionally and financially to make it to St. Louis for this consultation? The prospect of not being a candidate for the surgery was something I was prepared for. Having to explain that I wasn’t a candidate over and over again to my nearest and dearest was something I knew I wouldn’t be able to do.
I kept my circle very quiet and very close. I told only a handful of people. My mom on the other hand, told a few more. I didn’t mind, but I also didn’t know until later. It seems that after I sent my mother the article, she had everyone she had told logging on to people.com to read this story. It truly was such a relief to know that there was now a connection and understanding as to what I was doing that went beyond brief conversation. Who doesn’t love and adore Susan Lucci? My grandmother proudly told all her friends at her senior residence all about what Susan Lucci and I had in common. My grandmother gets it. She always has. But, her friends would now have a greater appreciation for my story on a level that went beyond my being Charlotte’s granddaughter with CP.
It may seem laughable to most but it wasn’t to me. Not one bit. What do I care if my grandmothers friends have a clue as to what I’m doing? I don’t…and I do. I care that they understand that this is a HUGE deal for myself and my family. I care that they get it so they can be supportive friends to my grandma. I care that the list of loved ones my mother confided in now get a better glimpse of the bigger picture of SDR. I care that the people who are in this tight-knit circle, who know and love me, also know that this is not just another one of the countless orthopedic surgeries I’ve had before. SDR is a game changer!
It was only after I returned home that my Mom and I were able to sit down and discuss the article. My Mom and I both learned how we shared a deeper appreciation for this article but for different reasons. My mom went on to explain that Susan Lucci gave birth to her daughter, Liza Huber, at Winthrop Hospital, where I was born. When I was suddenly born 10 weeks premature, the NICU nurses comforted my mother by explaining how they also cared for Susan Lucci’s premature baby girl. At the time that connection offered my mother great comfort and hope as she knew Liza was a preemie like me, and had grown into a healthy little girl.
That was a MAJOR full-circle moment in my mothers eyes and mine. What a beautiful God “wink” to let me know, again, as I prepare for SDR surgery…
I am on the right track.
It will all be ok.
As much as I question why or how I didn’t learn about SDR until so much later in life, it is moments like these that remind me that I really am on the right track. Here, now, THIS is my life’s journey. This is the path I was meant to take and there is no rewinding. My life is so incredibly blessed, I would never want to.