So, it’s no secret that life around here has been crazy, hectic, and stressful the last few weeks/ months as Sarah has battled Crohn’s Disease worse than ever and had surgery one month ago. Two weeks after the surgery, she ended up back in the emergency room with a new, large abscess that stretched across her abdomen and she was in the hospital for four days. She’s had a drain in the abscess that I’ve been flushing twice a day for a little over two weeks now.
We went to the doctor yesterday, hopeful that the drain could come out, but the doctor said she’d have the drain for another two weeks. It was disappointing news, but Sarah took it like a trooper. She’s hanging in there and I’m glad to see her positive outlook because when she first learned she’d have to have a drain, it was quite devastating.
With the number of doctor’s visits and hospital days, the new year hasn’t been exactly like I had imagined. Well, actually, going into the new year I had no idea how tough things would be. It’s been hard for her to get around and basic things like showering require my help. But, I’m not complaining. The size of her abscess could have been deadly and the narrowing of her intestines before surgery was dangerous. I’m so thankful for her amazing surgeon and for modern medicine. 100 years ago, we would have probably buried her in the ground. I’m so thankful for every day we have!
We are going to try and take more walks this week to help her ease back into being active and hopefully by the time the drain comes out she’ll be feeling strong and healthy.
Sarah did travel with us the week to Knoxville for her sister Hannah’s ice skating test and performance. Which leads me to the next part of this post.
So, as many of you already know, my daughter Hannah began ice skating about 2 1/2 years ago after begging us to let her take lessons for over a year. We live 2 hours and 3o minutes from the nearest ice rink so that means she gets to ice skate one day a week. And on that day each week we wake up at 3:30 in the morning, get dressed, load the car and drive to the ice rink so that she can be on the ice at 7:00 am and have her first private lesson of the day at around 8:30 am.
She typically skates for a total of 8 hours with a few breaks and has a second private lesson at 4:00 in the afternoon followed by a stroking class and then her Freestyle class. And then we pack up and head home, usually getting home around 10:00 at night. It makes for a long day.
It’s a huge commitment.
But, watching her work so hard for something she’s so passionate about makes every sacrifice, every long hour standing in the cold helping coach her, every exhausting morning/ day/ night and each long drive back and forth worth it. Before ice skating Hannah struggled with self-confidence. She struggled with not really knowing what she was good at and maybe even feeling like there was nothing she was really good at. Ice skating changed all of that and I’ve seem her blossom into this beautiful young woman.
I was looking back at videos of her on the ice one year ago, two years ago and the difference in her poise and confidence is amazing! She still has much to learn and there is always something to work on or polish. But she has worked diligently and it has paid off. And I’m so proud of her.
She had her Freestyle 3 Test this week on Tuesday afternoon and she passed! It’s something she has worked on for months, so it was exciting to watch her on the ice, showing off her skills. Her sisters Sarah, Emily, and Laura came to watch and support her, too. It was a good day – a day to celebrate her accomplishments. She scored a “9” on her Backward Arabesque and an “8” on Salchow Jump!
After passing the test, Hannah posed with her private coaches – Larry LaBorde who owns the ice rink and is a USFS Gold Medalist in Ice Dance and Devon Renfro. These two people have invested so much in Hannah and I’m so thankful. I said they look like proud parents in this picture!
And finally, I had so much fun – as always – helping Hannah get dressed for her performance and doing her hair. Just like when my other girls have their music recitals, doing their hair special makes the day even more special. This hair style was done a on whim – I was playing with her hair trying to come up with an idea and I am in love with this hairstyle. It was so easy to do too!