Sunday, August 9, 2009
Second Child, Daughter Noelle
Noelle is our second born (San Angelo, Texas, 1976). She is 30-something, living in Salts, doing occasional work as a freelance copy editor, coping with spina bifida, and providing support to a significant other who has recently spent nearly three years on life support but is now breathing on his own but restricted to a nursing facility.
As a youngster, Noelle was quite feisty. She learned and did many things that one might not expect from a paraplegic child. For example, she learned to roller skate in long-leg braces, thanks to a wonderful physical therapist who believed that nothing was impossible. She went on hikes with the Girls Scouts. At one point, the American Association of Pediatric Neurosurgeons used a slide show of her swinging on swings, playing ball, feeding farm animals, and the like as an example of what spina bifida children can do.
During her childhood, Noelle had more than 30 surgeries. Once she had passed #30, I stopped counting. She has had 12 different shunts to control hydrocephalus. She has had surgery to straighten her legs so that she can wear braces, to cure decubiti (3 times), to give her an ostomy, to take down her ostomy, and many others.
The most recent information on Noelle is posted on the Blest Atheist website (Twitterlets on the right-hand side). Sigh! The run of no medical emergencies (19 months!) has come to an end. A returning decubitis on Noelle's right foot has spread infection into her bone. Amputation may be required, but we are praying that they will be able to come up with an alternative.
See posts about Noelle.
More pictures, in order:
1. With Ray, her significant other
2. After neurosurgery in 2008