Saturday, May 31, 2008

Ada's New Cast

This week has turned out to be busier than Ada and I thought. Ada had surgery on Tues. to straighten out her right ankle. The doctor had hoped for a simple lengthening of ligaments but had to do a more extensive surgery to allow the ankle to have a more natural appearance. We had to stay in the hospital for two days for observation and to get pain meds right. As usual Ada was a trooper...better than me I'm sure. I found sleeping in a straight back chair while looking across at the the other empty bed in the room a bit difficult to say the least. I never thought the extra bed in Ada's room at the nursing home could look so good. As you can see in the picture Ada has a very large cast on her leg...the size is due to the padding they put inside to protect the incisions. I told Ponsawan it's a large enough canvas for her to paint the entire map of Thailand with native flowers!! The new orthopedic doctor who is taking over Ada's case is a very caring individual....and the nurses all have kind words for him. You can always trust the nurses least I think so. I have forgotten to mention that last week Ada got her hair washed for the first time in twelve weeks...can you imagine how good that felt. We had bought her a blow up sink that we lie on her bed and place her head in it...this thing works great and Ada loves it. Since then we have washed her hair twice more and plan to do this at least three times a week. You know Ada had the greatest hair so now that it's starting to grow back we need to keep it the way she would want it.

Those two nights in the hospital as I stared out the window and watched the Lifeline helicopters coming and going my thoughts always drifted back to Ponsawan and the strength she had in those first five weeks. I think all but one of those nights she spent sleeping in chairs, floors, cots, and probably even standing up. I know why she did it...I just don't know how she was able to function. It's in those moments that I'm glad that I was able to be by her side so often to help take care of things... even if it was the simple task of buying her raspberry ice tea and pizza. She has taught me so much and yet it's lessons that I wish I never had to learn. I also began to think of all the guardian angels that have crossed Ada's path. In these dire situations it's easy to recall all the bad things that have gone wrong and believe me there have been but it's better to stop and remember all those angels that have stepped up to the plate to help Ada and her family. You know who you are, your the ones when it looked like the system was going to fail them you called in some favors. You wanted to be a part of her made some phone calls, you opened up your heart, and you did the right thing. All these guardian angels along with the doctors, nurses, therapists, aides, and all those who stay so positive contribute to Ada's recovery. From the bottom of my heart...Thank You!

Due to circumstances beyond her control....let's just say Ponsawan's has had a lot on her mind lately...she has screwed up her return flight plans. Instead of coming home on Tues. she will arrive home on Thurs late eve. The punishment for this forgetfulness is a side trip to Hong Kong...not bad is it. Her trip to Thailand had been going so well I was afraid she would decide to stay there for awhile and just phone me for reports. I am so happy she has decided to go on to Hong Kong with Yui. I didn't want her to travel home alone. Those two started this trip in JFK with a hug and I'm glad they will end it there with lots of hugs.

And if I may I'd like to say a big thank you to my husband Tom... who from the beginning has been very supportive of helping the Silapuritis' in any we can. He is what is called a road warrior..his computer business keeps him away from home except weekends. Tom is not much of a gardner and it's the last thing I'm sure he wants to do but this weekend he planted flowers for me. So, Tom after thirty seven years of marriage I know I don't say it enough... Thanks for taking care of me.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

If I could save time in a bottle

I had a great time in Phuket with my friends. Just eat, sleep, talk and laugh. We barely went to the beach, except on one evening to watch the most beautiful sunset. Nithi is a wonderful host. He owns the island by the way. (Some day)
I had save many wonderful memories, lots of love and friendship in the bottle. Best of all, I had saved enough laugh to last for a year.
Thanks Ardis for taking care of Ada while I am gone. The funeral will be held this Thursday and I will be home next Tuesday. More details and pictures to share.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Sunny Days

As I had predicted the Memorial Day weekend was sunny and warm so Ada and Care Bear eagerly went out in the sunshine to start working on their summer tans. We took in the sights on the lake. There are very tame geese, ducks and one large swan named George that Ada got to know. Kyle went fishing and caught some bass but he is a kind fisherman and after getting them off the hook... back they go into the lake. Care Bear particularly was happy about that. Macey and her mother came for a visit as did Marisa and Abby. But probably her favorite visitor was her seven month old cousin Eliana. They really had a good time checking each other out.
Ada is doing well. She is having ankle surgery Tues. and hopefully that ankle will be on the road to recovery. She is a great roommate...Ada allows me full access to the bathroom, she never complains about my choice of music or movies, I get control of the remote and unlike her mother she doesn't snore!! She has managed to put up with me but I know she misses Mom . Ponsawan calls daily and yes Ting, she is in Bangkok visiting more friends and family. This will be a week of joy and sorrow for her but as I told her she will always be their little girl and they will live on in her heart. When Ponsawan calls I put the phone to Ada's ear and even in a deep sleep she wakes up and turns her head to the sound of her mother' voice. She knows her mother is always close... and of course when Dad enters the room to see her she also knows she is going to have her work cut out because he likes to exercise her arms and work on her stiff neck. Thanks again for all your sweet thoughts...they too sustain me. Love, Ardis

Friday, May 23, 2008

A Wow Day !!

Before I begin to share some news with you all. I want to first say that with all my heart I was blessed today to be the one to tell Ponsawan and Terry that their prayers, wishes and faith in Karma had come true. Ada had an appointment today with her neuro doctor. His name is Dr. Jude and for those who read this blog you may have seen his name. To make along story short he said that Ada had risen to a level that exceeded their expectations. We discussed a few things and then with a little coaxing from me he made a call to the best rehabilitation hospital in the state to have Ada evaluated. This is huge and what the family has been hoping for since Ada left the hospital. It does not mean that she is ready to go there but what it does mean is that she's going to be under their umbrella and if Ada makes the kind of progress she has been making she will get there. On Tues of next week she is going to have minor surgery to remove the pins in her ankle... they are causing her discomfort and since the Botox injection did not help her injured ankle the new ortho doc will also be lengthening a ligament so her ankle can be straightened. Ada will be wearing a new cast so I would expect Ponsawan to paint a beautiful picture... maybe the beaches of Phuket! The Botox injections are working in the other places that were injected. Ada has started to raise her head more often as if she is ready to get up and out of the room. We will be doing that today since the weekend weather is suppose to be warm and sunny.

Today after the doctor walked out of the room I shed a few tears and thought about Ponsawan and Terry. I thought about how for twelve weeks they have heard so much bad news. I don't want in anyway to minimize the news she was alive... but fighting for her life wasn't good. But what they heard for weeks in the hospital was very grim. Their belief in Ada sustained them and yesterday the news was great. I told myself that if it took all day I would not tell a soul until Ponsawan and Terry heard it first...fortunately in a couple of hours Ponsawan called while we were still in Ada's limo with her favorite drivers. She wanted to know if I had killed any docs and I laughed and said only with kindness. I then gave her the good news and told her it was due in part from all the good Karma from Thailand this week. It has been flying across the oceans to get here for Ada. I told Ponsawan to go and hug Yui for me and celebrate with friends.
I had not expected the day to go so well...not because we who have been around her hadn't seen progress but the fear that her doctor might not feel there had been enough...that was very real to me. One thing he did say was twelve weeks was not long for someone like Ada who had sustained much damage to begin to recover. That was the reality check we must all get used to...including Ada. You can sometimes see frustration and confusion come across her face... wanting to communicate somehow someway. I have been telling her all week we are working on it and this is not her problem it is we who have to find the key to unlock the communication. I hope calm soft voices soothe her for now because we will find a way.

Tonight Ada is resting and dreaming. Her dreams are of her mother... happy and smiling in Thailand, her father's gentle smile and kisses, and of how when she is able she is going to get back at Archie and Arthy for all their brotherly teasing. Tonight she is at peace. She has done her job for now. Ada has proven she has what it takes to make it.

Terry told me tonight that he had a new title for me... The Voice of Ada. I am humbled because I know if Ada could speak she would be advocating for herself one would need to.
I thanked him and told him I didn't kiss the Blarney Stone twenty-seven years ago for nothing!!

Hugs to all,

Thursday, May 22, 2008

These Small Hours

One might think that there is a lot of down time in a nursing home and maybe with some residents there is but not with Ada. Her mornings consist of nurses, aides, and therapists coming and going trying to do their best to not only take care of Ada's needs but the family's as well. The afternoons are just as full with physical therapy and getting her up into her fancy chair. The aides in the beginning used a motorized sling to move her but recently they feel confident that a few of us together can lift her out of bed and into the chair. She usually sits up two we tried out three...she did fine but once back in bed she slept for five hours. Most of us cannot imagine that sitting up in a chair can wear you out but when you have spent twelve weeks in a bed a person loses muscle tone that has to be built back up. Most afternoons or evenings Ada has a visitor or this might give you an idea of Ada's day. This of course is a normal day there are those days when she's out on the town meeting with doctors and on those days unfortunately she might miss needed therapies. But it is not those hours of the day that give me pause it's the quite time before Terry, Archie and Arthy's the small hours in the middle of the night when she is left undisturbed to sleep and dream.

It is then that I sit in the darkness not sleeping and knowing I should that I think of Ada and the beautiful person that we all know she is and has become. She usually sleeps very peacefully, sometimes with Care Bear who has been placed in her arms by dad or a young aide who always talks about the Care Bear they had as a baby. Sleep is as important and maybe more so right now than lots of stimulation. There are times during the day that I wonder if she doesn't want everyone to shut up and go away....hopefully one day we will all get an insight as to what she thinks and dreams.
It is in that dark stillness with the sounds of feeding pumps and air purifiers that I think of Ponsawan and all the nights she has sat here with her precious daughter that I shed a few tears. I think of my friend's courage and determination that the Ada who is here is as well cared for and loved as she once was as a newborn in her arms. Thanks to all of you in Thailand that are giving Ponsawan the new memories, warm hugs, and laughter that will help her in the days ahead. When she calls she worries not only of Ada but of me... I asked if she was having a good time and she said, yes. I told her then that is all I need to hear. I am fine Ponsawan and I am humbled by your warm words and your trust.

I will sign off with this verse:
Our lives are made in these small hours
These little wonders, these twists and turns of fate
Time falls away but these small hours still remain


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Two Days With Ada

I know many of you are waiting for some news about how Ada is doing so far this week. Well, as usual the best laid plans don't always work out. Sunday was suppose to be a day for Ponsawan and Ada to have some quiet time together along with the rest of the family but late afternoon Ada's feeding tube became clogged and she had to be taken into the ER in hopes they could perform a little magic and unclog the tube with a Clog Zapper. It didn't work so Ada had to stay the night and have a new tube inserted...she did very well and so did Mom. Ponsawan left yesterday morning and should be arriving to her destination in Thailand during our Tues. afternoon. She is so looking forward to seeing everyone there and spending time with Yui.
Today Ada took another limo (ambulance ride) with some of her favorite drivers to get her Botox treatment...she came through all of it just fine and we should know in a few days if this procedure will be successful.
Ada will have a couple of days off and then she has another doc. appt. on Fri so we get to ride in the limo again. One of these days maybe for fun and mischief they will turn on the lights and siren. She is a Diva, you know.

Ada is doing well considering all the doctor and ER visits. She continues to try and reach for things with her right arm. This movement seems very deliberate and despite missing the item she wants... many times she keeps at it till she is satisfied with her attempt to grab the "prize".
I told her today Dad can't give her a workout tonight because of the Botox injections..she seemed relieved!! Last night the Silapiruti men came into be with her. The brothers enjoy teasing her and trying out new ideas to get a reaction out of her. But sometimes she does something that gets a reaction out of THEM which always gets everyone laughing. Ada has been quiet and a bit unhappy this past week but we have to remember everyone has bad days. Today though while waiting in the surgery room I saw a big difference. Yesterday was chaotic and she knew Mom was gone ...but today she seems resolved to put up with me for awhile. Let's just say we are settling in. Probably she 's a bit worried how a mother of two sons is going to know how to take care of a girl. She doesn't realize that I have had a good teacher...Ponsawan. She also has to put up with a blond "mom" who doesn't speak Thai. The only real problem Ada and I will be having is finding the time to work on our tans with Care Bear considering all the limo rides she has to take. The staff here at American Village continues to exceed our expectations as to the quality of care she receives. It is a testament to them that Ponsawan decided to make this trip to her homeland.

The next couple of days should be quiet and it will give the therapists time to work with Ada. So if you plan on visiting please call first the best time would be after 2:00 and before 8:00 for visiting. A cell # is listed here on the blog some of you have my personal # which is fine to call also. Ada and I do need our beauty sleep. more than her unfortunately they used all the Botox on Ada's limbs today none left over for me. It is suppose to be nice weather this weekend so maybe we will get outside and do some Indy 500 racing in the wheelchair.

A side note:
From the bottom of my heart I want to first thank Ada's parents for trusting me with Ada's care. It is an awesome responsibility that I don't take lightly. When I am asked to sign medical papers I do so as if she were my own. Also I want to thank friends who have started to pitch in with meals for me etc. if not I would have to either hook myself up to Ada's feeding bag or eat with the residents and their food might be a little too bland for me. It means the world to me to know I have such good friends who worry about me and pray for Ada
Last but not least thanks to all who read this blog from all over the world. I hope it gives you some insight and comfort to know what is taking place here in Indianapolis. I know you want to be here for Ada and her family, your comments sustain Ponsawan everyday.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Dear Mom and Friend

We wanted you to know that we wish you a safe trip and even though you will be greatly missed we will work hard as a team and keep each other company. We want you to get lots of rest, eat good food, sit on the beach and watch sunsets, but most of all be in the company of old friends and family who love you dearly. Give them lots of hugs from Ada. Ada, Ardis, and Care Bear plan to work on our tans, watch movies, tell each other all our secrets, and read. Send us some pics. and we will too. Thanks Yui for taking care of Mom and being with her on this journey home. Don't worry we are in good hands (each others)!!
We love you,
The Three of Us

Leaving on the jet plane, I'll be back in 2 weeks

It will take me a day and a half to get to Thailand from here. Flying to Detriot then JFK, stop at Alaska then Hong Kong then Bangkok. A brief stop before heading to Phuket. My friend, Yui will be travelling with me. We had planned this since last year and I have to go back for my father funeral. My nephew, Tao, will become a monk for 2 weeks in honer of Grandpa. It is a tradition for male in the family to do that. He will get married on June 22nd. I haven't met his Fiance' yet and can't wait to meet her. The funeral will be on Thursday 29th. Thanks for my brother, he is taking care of everything.
Ada has been very quiet lately, she does not pay any attention to anyone. Just close her eyes or look away. She also sleep a lot which is good. We get her up on the chair everyday and get out of the room. We go outside if the weather permit, or just sit in the sunroom. Ardis will be in charge while I'm gone. She has a tough schedule ahead of her. First, Tuesday morning, Botox injection at OrthoIdy, then Friday, c-scan and appointment with Dr. Jude. Hum... Do you think he reads her blog? I guess not, may be he does not like the Beatles.
Ardis, Macy and Abby will also handle the visiting hour with Ada. Please call before you come.
We also contact Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor who is a Professor of Neuroanatomy at IU School of Medicine. She is just named TIME magazine list of 100 most influential on the planet. She suggests that we all read her book and then she will talk with us and set a plan for Ada. This is exciting news for us. Just like walking through the dark tunnel, then suddenly someone has offered a flashlight. I will have plenty of time to read her book. Let's hope that she has the answer that we are looking for. Something else I can do to help Ada, beside keeping her clean and make sure she get fed, changed and gets plenty of hugs and kisses from me.
I will ask Ardis to update the blog so we all can keep up with Ada's progress.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

An Ada Essence

I have all these small memories, they don't make good stories- they don't even make much sense. They just are. They are the ones that come to me at random moments. They rush up to the surface while I'm doing daily things-- watching a cooking show and thinking about a time we ate barbecue chicken pizza-- or putting on boots that remind me of a time I broke off a heel and Ada had to help me walk so I wouldn't fall on my bum.Now and then I think of staying up all night talking in her bed, cruising around with the windows down in the summertime, riding backwards in Rhonda's car, sitting on the deck in the sunshine, sitting at the kitchen table when everyone else was asleep, or sitting on the floor anywhere, listening to the same cd with one pair of earbuds – on a bus, a train, a plane.
In the majority of these I can't remember where we were going, what we were doing, or why we were doing it. For some reason we were just there, lounging around, chilling. Going no place in particular. Like that even mattered.
Still they all have this in common—Ada-- talking about Ada things. Being around Ada is like being at peace with the world- seeing the ridiculous, the hilarious and seeing also the fantastic possibilities, the potential for nothing to amount to something. It's like an Ada vibe. It's what stands out when I amble through these memories. Everything is good, everything is cool. No one else can evoke the vibe, you can only just be in it.
I know it's selfish. But even if she's not talking yet, I wish I were there now if only just to mellow in that vibe.
With love,

Friday, May 16, 2008

I feel like I know her

I've been writing little updates about Ada in my classroom newsletter for my first grader's parents to read. Each blurb comes with a different picture of Ada is easily found on the facebook account Ada for President and her own profile. Of course any college shenanigans had been cut out...leaving only lovely Ada. Hearing someone who has kept up to date on Ada by reading my blurbs say that…is a great thing to hear.
Over the past few months, I have had the honor to sit with, talk with, read to, sing to, sleep with and watch movies with Ada. I have been able to watch her progress through the ICU and into American Villages. I've talked with nurses, listened to therapists and tried to figure out what the heck that doctor guy is talking about.
I've kept as up to date as possible so that others who are not able to visit can know that Ada is Ada is Ada. I'm with her not because of a job….I am NOT a babysitter…but because she is Ada and this is something Ada would have done for anyone else.
Random memories go through your head while in Ada's room….
Chinese class: "Hey Ada"
"Hey Abby"
…..nap time
Talking about the boys that would become prom dates and boyfriends.
Creating choreography with George for Encores and then fighting with our group to just, "watch, it's not that hard"
Girl Scouts
Church at the ECC
Mario cart at John's
Midnight squid cooking…at John's
Deciding to live together…looking for houses and stepping knee deep in snow.
Ballet class
Going to "Rocky Horror"
The house at Highland and Atwater
…….There's just too many.
In the weeks, months and years to come there will be many more memories.
I'm not claiming to be her bestest buddy. As years went on after sophomore year, life happened and a random visit or dinner was what we could get. We were supposed to get together before she went to France. And then we had to push that off until she got back. She's on my list of bridesmaids.
What I am saying is…
Ada is that friend that can walk in and out of your life---but always be in your life. And I'm just tying to make sure that at this moment she is in my life. --
Dear Abby, during the first 3 weeks that Ada was in Critical care unit, I could count on you to be in the room with Ada while I took the break. We were told not to use the cell phone but you manage to sent text messages to everybody. Remember one night when Ada's finger tips were turning grey and the nurse told us that it was because of the medication they gave her and it should be change, otherwise the fingers could fall off. You and I took Ada's hands which were icy cold and we keep rubbing and rubbing until they turn to normal. Remember staring at the monitor, watching the pink number go up and down. At 3 am. almost everyday for 2 weeks, when the number went over 20, it beeped and the nurse would ran into the room and kicked us out. Remember the first time when Ada squeezed your hand and you almost faint. Abby, you always there for Ada and me. I have never thank you enough. Thank you for being such a good friend.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

What makes A Family

I've been asking myself this many times and for many different reasons all my life...but this time the answers don't come as easily or maybe they do when you aren't looking so hard. All I know is because of Ada the Hendrix and Silapirutis' have formed a new family one that has come together in grief but have found joy in each day. In a blink of an eye two families' lives have changed forever. Ponsawan and I recently discovered that both Ada and Kyle had told us each separately that we should be friends. Maybe Ada sensed that her mother would need a friend someday. Someone who can take charge, someone who loves her Thai culture and someone who knew Ada for a short while but fell instantly under her charm. Kyle probably had other reasons for wanting us all to be friends, but he also knew that Ponsawan played golf and thought that I should get her out on the course. Our kids have good instincts, don't they. Ponsawan is a treasure to me one that I hold dearly but I would give it all back if Ada hadn't been involved in this tragedy I chose to think we would've found each other just as our kids planned.Tom and I both wanted three kids but it wasn't to be but since adoption formed our family it seems only right that Ada has become my adopted daughter. Remember that adoption is forever...and that is how we see our new family, a forever family. I have had the experience of watching someone I love die slowly before my eyes but nothing prepares or compares to watching Ada working so hard to get better. Her brain may not be working the way we hope but her spirit and her heart are with us and that keeps those who love her strong. As I sit by the ocean this week my thoughts are with those at home. Ponsawan being so strong but scared at the same time...and what to say about Terry. From the first moment I laid eyes on him I saw the face of all the fathers I know. Dads are suppose to know what to do, to make things better, and be strong for all those around them...but how in this nightmare do you do that. He comes to visit always with a gentle smile and soft voice for Ada but not too long into his visits he's teasing Ada, moving her arms, trying to spray breath freshener in between clinched teeth. For a few minutes he's trying to make things normal...usually at some point he picks up Care Bear and puts it into Ada's arms remembering the times when she was daddy's little girl...she still is. Then of course there are the two guys that mean the most to Ada...Archie and Arthy. In these situations it's easy to misplace the other kids in a family, especially when they are 19 and 17 yrs. of age. Ada had told Kyle many of her hopes and dreams and always they included her brothers. They miss her so much...they too want their lives back. They want to talk to Ada about things you don't tell your friends or parents. She always understood them and she would be the first to remind us all how fragile they are. Like their father they come into her room and tease her in the way that only brothers do. They all gather in her room many nights just being who they are ...a family who has strength that compares with nothing I have ever known.I have seen two gifts Ada gave to her night she shed tears as Terry talked to her and recently those in the room shed tears when Ada after days of not turning her eyes transfixed on Ponsawan's voice and touch. It is these moments that sustain us all in this journey.I can't explain any of this there are things we just don't have answers for and to try to make sense would just drive us crazy. It is just what it has become...a family for Ada...a family for all of us.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Her Private Limo

Not quite cozy as a luxury Limousin, but it is very comfortable and cost so much more per ride than renting a Limo. I am talking about the Ambulance. The red or green or white big box car that comes here to pick up Ada. She still has to go back and forth to the hospital or doctor appointment. Some EMT personals had become familiar faces and become friends. They take extra time and extra care to make sure that Ada gets the smoothest ambulance ride any girl could ask for.
Next Tuesday, Ada will go back to Orthopedic Clinic for her Botox injection. Being young and already beautiful, You wouldn't think she will needs Botox this early. Botox is known to help relax muscle, so she will get the injection into her arms, feet and her neck. All the limps became too contracted and twisted in the way that she might not be able to walk, when she can walk, or use her arms when she can reach for something. By relaxing the muscle, we will be able to maintain her flexibility, stretch and exercise her arms and legs.
Ada has been really calm and spend a lot of time sleeping. She does not need any pain medicine like before. I know that the cast on her foot was the major source of pain. She sleeps well and so do I.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Her Waterfall

From everything bad must come something better.
From everything better, something more perfect is yet to come.

That’s what she brought together.

Just erosion through rocks. Trouble, it must have felt when this occurred.
Then, heavy rain, from dark clouds. A perfect day ruined—possibly.

But here we stand, strong, feeling—this perfect waterfall.
What only had come from trouble, yet here we stand.

Could we word it any better from our mouths as in our hearts?

I do not know her like she does, like he does, or like you do. Knowingly, we embrace the difference, and each other—our common love.

Take your day and bring yourself joy, whichever way it comes.
Take your days like she took hers, and love. We’ve learned to love—we must.

As we sit a mile closer to the sun, we realize there’s always something higher—always something lower. Something to be…and something to continue.

It’s life, and love. Belief, and support.
Your child, our friend.
We realize that whatever this means, this means something different to everyone.

It’s giving, and embracing.
It is, and continues to be, everything she is.
2 strangers. 3 friends. And here we stand.
Creating everything we are.

“And no one else could ever show me how to see the world the way I see it now. I’ve never seen blue like that before.”

Tina and Macey

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

I made this bracelet for Ardis, she was on vacation with her husband, Tom, in Florida this week. Ardis has 2 sons, so having a chance to take care of Ada and buying a pink nightgown must be quite an experience for her. For the past 9 weeks, she had been helping me taking care of Ada as if Ada is her own daughter, so it's only appropriate for me to share my daughter with her. I always introduce her as Ada's adopted mother and I hope she doesn't mind. It is hard for Ardis to leave, she is worried about Ada and me. By the time I have to leave for Thailand, I will feel the same way. My friend, Yui, will travel with me. I can't imagine sitting on the airplane by myself for 18 hours, feeling lonely.
It is tough being a mother, especially during the difficult time as I am at this stage of my life. I don't expect a big bouquet of flower or any gift, I just want hugs and kisses from my kids. I'm sure I will get plenty from my sons, but still, longing for a hug from my daughter.
My mother passed away while I was here, 25 years ago, I did not get a chance to say good bye. For a long time, I had this thought about if I had one wish, what do I wish for. Not a million dollar or a fancy car, I just want one more chance to go back and tell my mom how much I love her and give her a hug one more time. I love you, mom.
Don't wait until you don't have a chance to hug your love one again, do it today.
Happy Mother's Day everyone.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Don't worry, it just a broken ankle

That's what everyone told me when I asked whether they will fix her broken ankle. She still has her ankle in cast 9 weeks after the accident. Ada is the first one in the family who broke any bone in her body. All of my 3 kids played sport while they were young, but never a broken bone. This broken ankle turn to be a pain in the rear end. I am sure she is hurt, itchy, annoying and angry because she always kicking her leg as if she wants to get rid of it. I painted on her casts, just so I don't have to be angry every time I look at it.

The latest pink one, I dedicated it to my dear friend who always be there for me when I want a shoulder to cry on. Yes, I do cry, occasionally, but not in front of Ada.

I bought 2 night gowns for Ada and had it split on the back. Since then Ada has a closet full of pretty night gowns. Ardis is having fun shopping for a girl, buying pink water melon gown.

Everyone at the American Village is so happy to see Ada. They gave me a hug and I give them a bowl of candy. The trach hole is healing well. She starts making noise from her throat. I told the Speech Therapist who comes in and works with Ada everyday to teach her to say "Ma-ma", but I wouldn't be surprise if she say "Da-da" first.

Ada's right arm is so active, she moves it up and down and start grabbing on to the nurse while they are feeding her. Her right leg (with the cast) is also very active too. Oh, and she will let you know if she needs change. She also shows many expression through her face and her eyes. I can tell that she is happy to see me and gets angry when I try to clean her teeth.

With all the right combination of medicine she is taking, Ada seem happy and more relax. I hope without the cast on her leg, she will be able to focus and work on more basic skill so she will be able to communicate with us. The cast will be out tomorrow,I hope I don't have to yell at anybody.

P.S. Here is the picture of the first cast I painted with the help of Care bear.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

With Love, RN - A6S Methodist Hospital

I received a card from one of the nurse who took care of Ada last week. No surprise that a girl who cannot talk, or barely respond to anyone, just laying there mind her own business, had make so much impact on everybody life. It said "Ada is a beautiful and truly special young woman and I wish I could have known her the way you do. I hope that we can each learn from who Ada was, is and will be in the future."
All the staff at Methodist had been great, but the nurse at A6S wing were extra special. " I need to change my girl, can you help?", that's what I heard one nurse talking to another. They took pride in making sure the patients get turn properly to prevent bedsore.
Oh, yes, she is a special girl. Can't you tell.
We will be back to the village tomorrow, for sure. She gets the right medicine and she looks very happy today. I move her bed near the window, so she can get the afternoon sun.
Good news is I got a chance to clay and make some beautiful buttons and also prepare some articles to send to the magazine.
Thanks Amber, Doris, Emily, Heather, Judy, Kristen, Michelle and many others.

Here's is the message for Dr. Jordan Jude, the Neuro Surgeon:
Hey, Jude, don't make it bad
Take a sad song and make it better
Remember to ler her (ADA) in to your heart
Then you can start to make it better (for her)
We will contact Dr. Jude to have him put the flap back to ada"s skull in June after I come back from Thailand.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

For Good

It's been a month now since I wrote to this blog… so much has happened ...some good, some not so good but what is the constant in all of this is the love and support that Ponsawan has for her daughter. Ada and Ponsawan had something so special before the incident that happened to Ada... a bond stronger than most parents have with their children. They shared secrets and ambitions for each other....they even shared late night snacks and sometimes the same bed. I believe Ponsawan encouraged Ada to take chances, explore the world, and go out and get what you want. It was the kind of life most women Ponsawan's age rarely got to do...because that wasn't the way the world saw women when she was a young girl. As many of you know Ponsawan could've done anything and had many career paths if the times had been different when she was Ada's age. Instead she chose the path of wife and mother and she has done it well...always supporting her children's choices in sports and activities. She drove them all over the country to explore and to help them grow into the wonderful young people they are today. What all of these life experiences hasn't taught is how to survive this kind of tragedy that befell this family eight weeks ago. Nothing and noexperience in life prepares someone for this heartache except being a caring loving individual that Ponsawan is. She doesn't want this role of the strong silent type...what she wants is to scream at the top of her lungs as to why did this happen to her daughter... I suspect she does but it is into a pillow to silent her screams and tears. When she is with Ada she smiles, sings, and gives her small kisses...I don't think she always sees Ada responding to her in a way she has reserved just for her Mom. I sometimes have to turn my back because I am going to cry and I try to never do that in front of Ponsawan. I'm sure most of us Moms would face each day similar to how Ponsawan does..but I don't think I would with such grace and dignity. She says nearly everyday "I just want to take care of Ada"... not all these other messy details. I always tell her you clean her face, wash her hair, etc. and let me do the bumps that come along but I hate it when I have to tell her the day just got a little crazier than we expected. It seems to take two heads to try and stay a step ahead of Ada but it all pays off when she does something you never saw before even if it sitting in ER for 15 hrs. and laughing because that day she decided to move her left foot up and down like she was saying hello to her Mom...Ponsawan needed that gesture and I think Ada knew it.
If I can paraphrase a few lines from a song from the musical Wicked that I have loved since I first heard these words maybe Ponsawan and Ada will know why it is honor to be with them.

I’ve heard it said that people come into lives for a reason bringing something we must learn and we are led to those who help us most to grow if we let them. Now I don’t know if I believe that’s true but I know I’m who I am today because I knew you. So much of me is what I have learned from you you’ll be with me, like a handprint on my heart and now whatever way our story ends I know you have rewritten mine by being my friend. But because I knew you…I have been changed for good.

I have heard friends, nurses and caretakers say Ponsawan is lucky to have me around...that is untrue because lucky would to have been to have never needed me. If fate had thrown us together in some other way we would've been good friends... besides we share the same taste in pizza and breadsticks. This blog is suppose to be for Ada so maybe someday she will know the journey she took to find her way back…but this journey would never have been if it was not for the love her mother feels for her and the small ways Ponsawan deals with each day, each new curve in the road.
Ardis Hendrix