My Daughters Best Friend...
Her Last Day’s
Thursday morning, running just a bit late for school 16 year old Karey passes a slow moving car, hits an ice patch and looses control of her car. She spins on the ice and collides with a brick mailbox impacting in her drivers’ door. She is unconscious and breathing is labored.
She is rushed by ambulance to the hospital; her list of injuries far too long. Major head trauma, cracked skull, broken pelvis, her spleen ruptured, her bladder torn, her diaphragm and stomach pressed up into her rib cage, broken sternum, and left elbow shattered.
The doctor’s race to save her life; surgery to repair what they can. She comes through the surgery and is stable but unable to breathe on her own.
Family and friends begin to fill the waiting room and line the halls. So many, she is so loved.
Within hours her brain is swelling and she is taken back into surgery to try to relieve the pressure. They do what they can and a monitor is inserted into her skull. We now just wait…pray the swelling subsides.
Karey was a member of the cast for her schools production of “High School Musical”…the day of the accident was to be opening night for the play. They rest of the cast goes on stage as planned. They are doing it for her, knowing she would want for them to.
At intermission an announcement is made. Inserted in each of the programs were various colored strips of paper. The audience was told of the accident and that if they so wished they could write a prayer or thought of hope for her recovery. Ushers collected the papers…baskets and baskets of them.
As strips of paper were being collected my daughter received a text message from one of her friends that was at the hospital…Karey’s vitals were dropping and the swelling was becoming critical. She approached me shaking and in tears…showed me the message, the musical director told her to just go…and off we went. There was simply no way that she could go back on stage. We raced to the hospital.
Around 11:30 pm the swelling has continued to progress until her brain ruptures. Brain activity is no longer seen. Her parents unable to believe its possible await the brain scan scheduled in the morning praying they doctors are mistaken.
The scan is performed the following morning. No activity present.
Karey is taken off all medications; there is nothing more they can do. The parents are told that the neurosurgeons will be in to see her between 3 and 5 to examine her and discuss options.
A notebook had been started the night before. All the classmates and friends lining the halls of the ICU had written notes to Karey in this notebook. I took this notebook up to the High School so that more of the students could add their own notes.
The students had taken all those strips of paper from the baskets collected the night before and made from them a massive “prayer chain”. You know like you made in grade school to drape around the classroom.
I took the “prayer chain” to the hospital and left the notebook to be brought later. The nurses took the chain and draped it all across the top of the blankets keeping Karey warm. The nurses and hospital staff were very moved by this…they thought it was the neatest thing they had ever seen done. Also on her blankets were several guardian angles the kids had brought for her, and a little care bear…as that was Karey’s nickname.
After school was let out for the day the students again began to arrive. Cramming themselves into the waiting room. Small groups were then allowed to go back and visit Karey.
At one point a small group including my daughter was huddled around her bed and they began to softly sing. They sang “Amazing Grace”, then “I Can Only Imagine”…Karye’s mom then requested they sing “Broken Road” by Rascall Flats as it was Karey’s favorite song. Nurses and staff again stopped and listened…so moved and impressed by the love these kids were displaying.
Just before 5pm as the doctors examine her and apply stimulus looking for any sort of reaction or indication of brain activity the parents sit and watch. Nothing….
Her breathing tube is removed; and within minutes her heart stops. Resuscitation attempts are made but were unsuccessful.
Our sweet Karey, my daughters best friend left this earth for Gods loving arms at 6pm last night.