Friday, November 11, 2011

Continued improvement

Two weeks after fire

As the days turned to weeks, Suki continued to improve. Some areas of burned skin were even beginning to heal, with early signs of "peach fuzz"! We were always so excited by these new developments. One day we noticed that her whiskers were growing in, and the day we saw eyelashes everyone squealed with delight!

Suki's mane and tail were also burned, having an almost "melted" appearance. Her entire body smelled like smoke as I hugged her. What was interesting though, was how the area just beneath her mane was completely normal because it had been covered by the longer hair. This only goes down about an inch along the crest of her neck, but it is soft and shiny.

Suki's vision appeared to be normal, but there was some concern regarding her eyelids as the healing progressed. Burned skin contracts as it heals, so the doctors worried that if too much contraction occurred the lids would lose their ability to close completely, requiring reconstructive surgery. Daily eye drops to keep her eyes moist was clearly not an option!

A mare and foal moved into the stall next to Suki in ICU. She became COMPLETELY obsessed with the foal! Every time someone would open her door, Suki would try to stick her head out to get a better look! If the baby talked, Suki responded. It was very sweet!

Cheryl, one of my instructors (and friend) was going to take her take her horse to New Bolton for some diagnostic work so she went over to ICU to see Suki. I will always remember the text that she sent that day: "Oh, Fran". In my mind I could hear the sadness in her voice as she wrote it. Her husband was originally going to go in with her, be he decided against it as they dressed in gowns. He later told me that all of a sudden he realized that he just could not go in there. I completely understood. Seeing a horse in that condition is just so difficult. Two weeks after the fire Michael went in to see Suki. I tried to prepare him for what he would see, and warned the nurses that he might pass out! He had expected much worse, and thought Suki looked pretty good for only two weeks out!

Life fell into a routine of taking Isaiah to preschool, work, and making the 1 1/4 hour drive to New Bolton 4-5 days a week. The human entrance to ICU runs along the back side of the stall area. I noticed when I exited that it was necessary to pass Suki's stall. Because Suki is so tall, she was able to almost see out of the high, frosted window in her stall. I was able to see her head turn in an attempt to see me every time I left ICU.

The nurses told me that Suki would go right to the front of her stall and look in the direction of the door as soon as she heard my voice. Then, of course she would start kicking the stall door until I went in by her. What can I say? The girl knows what she wants! Must be that diva personality!

November 11, 2011
Suki has a new FB friend...she is a special needs girl who participates in therapeutic riding, and has won medals in the special Olympics. During her conversation with Suki, X explained that she had some medical conditions that require a variety of testing, and this is sometimes scary. Here is a piece of the "conversation"

"You are so very brave X! I know that all of this is very scary to you, but it is important that the doctors figure things out to make you feel better. When the doctors were taking care of me I was afraid too. But they made me feel better. When you are afraid, think of me and know that I am thinking about you and giving you BIG horsie hugs!"

"Hi Suki thank you so VERY much :) you made me feel better already i will think about you when i am afraid that will make me smile ♥ You are a VERY smart Horsey I Love you so much ♥ How are you feeling today? i hope good :)"

It always makes my heart smile when I see the joy and hope that Suki can bring to others!

1 comment:

  1. Hello Suki,
    My name is Keely and I am truly inspired by you and your story. I would just like to know how you are doing now in 2017?