My little sister is one of the most courageous people I know and she desperately needs your prayers and positive thoughts. I made this printable for her to remind her that we don’t always know why things happen, but that we can be assured of God’s love. Please read her story and click on the link at the bottom of the page to download this print quality image.
I am a very private person and haven’t shared much about my sister’s medical condition over the past year. As an RN, I have seen many people with a variety of serious medical conditions, and quite a few of them could have similar letters written about them. In the aftermath of the various tragedies that have faced our country and the world lately, I feel like maybe this isn’t the time, but when would be the right time? I love my sister, want the best for her and she and her family desperately need your prayers.
Becca and her husband, before her AVM
My sister, Becca, whom many of you know, has had a difficult time this past year. April 8, 2012 she had a major brain bleed, from an inoperable congenital AVM (arteriovenous malformation), that affected her entire body. She was flown by helicopter first from a tiny town in Northern Washington to Spokane and then from Spokane to Seattle. She spent more than two weeks in the Neuro ICU at Harborview. Her brain was extremely swollen, they surgically placed a shunt in her brain to drain excess spinal fluid, as well as a catheter in the top of her skull to monitor the pressure in her brain. The AVM rupture left her with an inability to speak fluently, slight paralysis and major balance issues. She now uses a walker.
In July she had gamma knife radiosurgery to stop the bleeding, because the AVM was still oozing. She has been and continues to be in a tremendous amount of pain: headaches from brain swelling; broken bones and torn muscles from falls related to her loss of balance.
Her husband is a hard worker, but the enormity of her medical bills has put them in a major financial bind. Because of the funding issues she has been unable to get the services she needs, like occupational therapy, physical therapy, massage therapy, etc so that she has some shot at being independent in her activities of daily living. She also needs speech therapy so she is able to communicate better. She has had increased problems with her vision as well. Each visit of any kind, to any provider for whatever reason, has a $35 copay, and the amount of therapy that she needs has totally overwhelmed their resources.
She and her family have literally been through hell this past year and the stress is overwhelming for them. Her husband has valiantly stood by her side through all of this, as has the rest of her family. But her brain continues to swell intermittently and she has started having seizures that aren’t controlled by the anti-seizure medicine she takes. They did a CT three weeks ago that showed there was quite a bit of brain swelling. They did another CT on Friday that showed even more swelling. And there is really nothing they can do for that, since steroids don’t seem to reduce the swelling. She is in such tremendous pain all of the time and extremely worried about the impact her AVM has had on her family emotionally and financially that I would just like her to have some relief from the pain and some peace that things will turn out.
I believe strongly in the power of prayer and hope that if enough people pray for her she will be blessed with the ability to overcome the many obstacles that are now in her path. That she will also be blessed with the ability to cope with the frustrations she deals with on a daily basis. She is still funny and intelligent, can tell me the phone number we had when we were teenagers, add numbers in her head, but she can’t take care of herself and can’t speak fluently.
I know everyone has difficult times in their lives, but if you could take a moment out of your busy lives to think of her and offer her a prayer, I know that she and her family would appreciate it. I am praying for a miracle, however it may come.
Thanks for reading her story. Please click on the link to download the printable. For best results make sure to change your printer setting to the type of paper you are using, I recommend matte or glossy photo paper. Please feel free to share or repin the image so that people will learn of her story.
I took this photograph at one of my favorite parks in Seattle last summer. If anyone knows the author’s name please let me know and I will change the printable to give him/her credit.