Tuesday, August 17, 2010

How we celebrated.


(Me and the Mr. sailing today)

Mr. Nielson and I celebrated our 2-year-we-escaped-death-day, or a celebration of life.
To me, they are kinda the same thing.
We woke up and dropped the children off at Mom #2/20 (Courtney) house so Christian and I could have breakfast and then visit the Salt Lake City Burn unit.
Breakfast was not so hot. Sadly the manager was yelling at all of his employees to do this and that, and it made me mad. Then I was kind of frustrated that the fruit tasted like salad dressing. I am pretty sure that they slept over night together in the refrigerator.
Oh well, I'm alive.
Then we drove up the very familiar route to the Salt Lake City Burn unit where I met and saw many burn survivors fighting for their lives. It was a privilege.
And, if I didn't already mention to you how painful burns are, I am going to tell you again.
Burns hurt.
Really bad.


(Remember "All is well"? Now I have "Theres no place like home" necklace given to me by Crystal B.)

And it pained me to see patients dealing with the trauma of their accidents on top of anxiety about what is going to happen in real life after they are released from the hospital.
I wanted to show others that life just gets better.
It is really crappy for a while, but the road to recovery couldn't be more rewarding.
I have learned that we are not burn victims, we are burn survivors.
In every sense of that word.
The patients are in good hands with skilled doctors and amazing nurses!
(missed you Lezlie and Georgia!)
I hope to do that each anniversary.
I want to give HOPE to others and it helps remind me of where I
was and how far I have come, personally.
It felt good to know that I could WALK out of the burn unit with my sweetie on one hand, my wedding ring on the other headed home-together.
And, I wanted every single person in the hospital to know it.
When I was living in the hospital in Salt Lake, I was given room # 20.
That room is located really close to the exit door.
Day after day I listened to family leaving my bedside and wished and cried for it to be my turn.
I dreamed of opening up the door and walking out to my own car taking me to my own house, my own bed, and to my own children.
That moment re-played hundreds of times a day in my head at cozy room 20.
It finally came.

****
When we returned home, Mr. Nielson and I shared a nap on our bed with windows wide open.
We were spooning.
Another privilege I share and one we will never take for granted.
Katy (mom # 3 out of 20) took the children so we could nap and then go sailing to end the big day.
Before we left, Nicholas held me tight and wouldn't let me go
(just as he did 2 years ago when I left on the airplane that fateful day).
I had tears in my eyes as I looked at my little blondie.
He loved me before the accident and he still loves me and best of all,
I am here for him.
Then, I felt a little emotional.
****

(Andrew and Megan in the 'AuroraMark' sailboat)

It is my beautiful sister-in-law Megan's birthday. Mr. Nielson and I were happy to take her and my brother Andrew out on a perfect birthday and anniversary sailing trip to Utah Lake.
The weather was just right and the sunset was breathtaking.
I came home and smooched my babies and put them to sleep. Now I am climbing in bed with my babe as we begin looking forward to another year of life where we will continue to survive and thrive (and spoon).