Another Turning On Our Journey



Nyel’s surgery yesterday was two-thirds successful.  First, they were able to take out all the hip repair hardware from his first hip repair surgery two months ago.  Second, they were able to put up necessary antibiotic barriers against the staph infection which apparently came along with the “hardware failure” (as they call the screw that went through the bone and eroded a tennis ball sized hole in his pelvis.)


The third thing the surgeons hoped to do was a new hip repair/replacement, but things got complicated.  Something got into his bloodstream and impeded his breathing.  They were able to stabilize him but, once his heart/lungs get back to “normal,” he will continue living without a hip.  And, his left leg will be shorter.  “There will be no more hip surgeries for Nyel,” the orthopedic doctor said.  “His heart can’t manage it.”

“Will he be able to walk?” the words came tumbling out, of course, though they really weren’t my first and foremost thoughts.  There was a long pause.  And then, “Maybe some.  With crutches or a walker.”  Another pause.  “It will depend on how determined he is.”

Nyel is still in the ICU and on a ventilator.  He is responsive – can nod or shake his head in answer to questions and squeezes my hand when I tell him I love him.  The doctors have not told him yet about the one-third of his surgery that didn’t happen.  The one-third which would have kept him along the path he has walked these past seventy-five years.


As I sit in the ICU trying to make sense of all the information on the monitors… trying to understand what all the doctors are telling me… my thoughts run the gamut.  Will we have to have all the left legs of his trousers shortened?  How much mobility can he expect – as in will he be able to cook in our current kitchen or should we consider remodeling?  What will we be like as a three-legged team and how can I be of most help to him as we begin this new path on our journey?

And please, please keep him safe and strong and pain-free…

8 Responses to “Another Turning On Our Journey”

  1. Pat Wollner says:

    My heart is breaking for you both.

  2. Cyndy Hayward says:

    Oh, my heart is broken for you two. Such valiant steadfastness Nyel and you have manifested to get him (literally) back on his feet. So much that Nyel has endured. I know that you two have the grit and love to overcome the new obstacles and new “reality”. Just remember that there are so very many people whose hearts are with you and who will want to help in any way we can.

  3. Michelle Rogers says:

    Sending so much love to you both. Please please let me know how I can be of help!! Sending healing light to Nyel’s heart and lungs as well as to body for rising to
    This new challenge!! All my love!

  4. I have no words. Just sending your my positive thoughts. One day at a time, Sydney. One day at a time.

  5. Laurie Anderson says:

    My mother once made a 3-legged stool. It had an odd stability. I predict it will feel odd at first and then, once grounded in the solid love you have for one another it will become your new normal. My heart goes out to you both as you face these challenges.

  6. Mary Garvey says:

    Wow. What not great news. I am hoping the tides will turn.

  7. Deborah L Wells says:

    So sorry to hear of what is happening to you both! We will put you all on our prayer list at church and keep blessings coming your way! Hope that all goes well with you both on the recovery from all this! Debbie

  8. sydney says:

    Thank you from both of us!

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