It was extremely difficult for my family to be confronted with such a severe crisis when their home was in Florida. My father and Kathy had to work so they were only able to come to Oklahoma on weekends. My younger sister, Carrie, had to attend school in Oklahoma and live with my grandparents as mom chose to remain with Jeff and Dawn so she could be near the hospital. My father, who is a pilot, had the solution to the problem; fly up and bring me back home. My dad brought a doctor from Miami and to Oklahoma and rented a sky bed so that he could fly me home.
The plane was ready and all that was left to do was to prepare me for the trip. Dawn thought it was just terrible that I would be wheeled through the airport bald. She decided to take care of this by putting a hat on my head. Normally, I would have been very embarrassed at my appearance as the hat was red and it was tied onto my 83-pound body but Dawn was so proud of herself for thinking of this that she just had to show me. She sat me up and put a mirror in front of me and made me look at myself. I did and laughed out loud. All of the doctor’s and nurses had to come to hear me chuckle. This incident happened December 6th and was the first positive sign that I had given since the accident.
Then it came time to get onto the plane. I stared at my mom the whole flight to Miami. She kept repeating, “Susie, we’re going home”. Kathy met the plane and I cracked a big smile when I saw her. I must have known I was home although I have no memory of my arrival. I was then taken by ambulance to the hospital. My room wasn’t ready so I camped out for a while in the adjoining room. I wouldn’t let any of the nurses touch me but they held me down and finally put a catheter in me. It was late and everyone left me alone. I showed my hatred for this hospital by pulling out my nose tube. The nose tube is a feeding device that goes through the nose down into the stomach. They had to x-ray me before another one could be put in. I was now given the title “semi-comatose” because of this little incident.
The nose tube was reinserted and I pulled it out again. The doctor’s x-rayed me for the second time that evening and put the third tube down my nose. I was put back into my room and the nurses thought I was through causing havoc for the evening. I decided that I was uncomfortable being hooked up everywhere so I took care of that; I yanked out the nose tube and I didn’t like the feeling of the thing in my throat either so I pulled it out. My bladder was still emptying into a bag so I was going for that when a nurse walked in and foiled my plans. They left my throat tube out, x-rayed me, put my nose tube back in and reinserted the catheter. This time they tied my hands my hands down to the side of the bed and got Kathy to come in and watch me. I was determined to get that nose tube out so I bent over and put my face down to my hands. Kathy had to slap my hands to make me stop. Yes, I was home and I didn’t like it one bit.