I can’t believe it’s been almost a year since Finley’s last surgery. I hope it’s her last surgery, but I don’t know that for sure. She is at a higher risk for reoccurance since they took out the Gortex and then closed her only with her own tissue (SUCH A HUGE PRAISE!), but each day we get closer to 2 years post-surgery, brings us closer that risk dropping monumentally. Plus, I don’t give much stock to statistics. Every single thing I have worried about as potential outcomes from CDH actually never happened, and the thing that did, came so far out from left field it wasn’t even on my radar. The Gortex patch becoming infected so many years post-surgery doesn’t happen much – It happens days/weeks/months post surgery. But 6+ years? I have yet to find another case.
So how is Finley doing? I get asked this question frequently. She is a perfectly happy and healthy 7 year old. She loves to dance, do the bars at recess, read, play elaborate games of pretend in her room, bonus room, living room (let’s face it – she pretty much takes over the entire house). The scar on her stomach has faced and is a beautiful straight line which to me signifies her warrior status. There is a scar on her back that is round and concave. It is where the seeping wound resided. After they excised it post surgery and stitched it up, it scared us post surgery as it looked like it was going to come back, but then it healed and faded, but it very noticeable. The surgeon said that she could opt for plastic surgery down the road if it bothers her. Currently, the idea of another procedure is that last thing on Finley’s mind. I hope she keeps it. Our scars tell a story. All of us have scars, some visible, some invisible. I love every bit of Finley, especially the scars. She has been through so much in her 7 years of life and the scars tell a tiny bit of that story. They are beautiful. They are badge of the warrior who has been through battle. When we make it through the battles, we usually do not come out unmarred. It changes us. It marks us. It makes us stronger in some areas, weaker in others, and more sensitive, or raw in spots. It pricks us with pain at odd times and reminds us of it’s presence. With enough time, those sensations fade and all that remains is that scar. An ever present reminder of what we’ve been through. Last year, was a hard year for Finley, but to see the faith that was born from it – her trust in the Lord is real. I am thankful for that.
I have said before that just looking at Finley, is for me, a monument of God’s answered prayers. I am so thankful for how God has already worked in her life, is working in her life, and also how he has worked in my life. I love that I prayed for God to heal her for 6+ months, but he had something even better in mind. Through surgery they were able to remove all the organs that were fused to the patch, take out 98% the Gortex (everything they could see that wasn’t absorbed into scar tissue), and then place some of her fat tissue under her diaphragm to prevent the organs from adhering again. She hasn’t had any complications and so far the X-rays have looked good. They will be following closely every six months for another year, and then we will be able to go longer without X-rays.
Thank you for continuing to pray for her and follow her story… we are so thankful for the village of people that love us and support us in prayer.