Autumn - 16 years old
Ever heard the saying that no news is good news? It has been six years since my daughter Autumn's surgery. After having the J pouch procedure, considering the rough start she had after surgery and the year it took to recover, the last 5 years have been great.
We have continued to thank the Lord for His guiding wisdom in the timing of the surgery and leading us to the best surgeon and GI doctors for this particular disease.
Every year Autumn goes to Nationwide Children's hospital for a follow up appointment. This summer, she has had some trouble and has not felt as well as she normally had. She was put on Cipro (Ciprofloxacin), which is often used for bacteria infections. In this case, her pouch had become infected. After being on Cipro from July-September, her Doctor ordered a sigmoidoscopy (obviously she can't have a colonoscopy because she does not have a colon) :)
Yesterday the procedure was scheduled. We left the house at 5:30am Monday morning, dropped Joshua off at church to work, and headed to Columbus. One of the reasons I love Columbus Children's is because we have history there and we know many of the nurses, doctors and cleaning people. It seemed like Autumn lived there for 5 years of her life...You know this is true, when you walk down the hallway and you are greeted by people who remember you and your family! :)
The doctor told us three things. First, he did not see any Crohn's Disease. This was one of the concerns we had talked about six years ago. There was always the question whether she might develop Crohns later. He was able to scope a little of the small intestine where Crohn's disease is usually seen.
Second, there were three places in the pouch that showed infection...he biopsied these. However, he said he was not overly concerned. Putting her back on Cipro should help this.
Third, the small piece of colon that the surgeon had to keep to sew to the rectal muscle when the pouch was created,was infected as well. This was a bigger concern. We had been told that even though after the surgery her colon was gone...the surgeon had to to keep a small piece. So technically Ulcerative Colitis can still effect that small piece...which it has. If this continues and that small piece deteriorates, she loses her pouch and has to have an outside bag. Obviously this is NOT what we want.
The doctor very clearly said that although it is infected, we will continue to treat with Cipro; and he does not think the worst case scenario will happen. With medication, we should be good.
Often times I go back and read or think about those hard time we went through as a family. At the time, it was such a normal part of our lives, now I can not imagine juggling all the children and Autumn's health issues. I truly believe that God gives grace, comfort, and His strength to continue on in the time of greatest need.
We drove away grateful, thanking God again for allowing us to have such good news.
He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
Isaiah 40:29-31 (ESV)
God reached down in love and rescued Cassandra from her sin at the age of 21: changing her life, purpose, and focus forever.