On Monday, November 2, 2015 we drove 9 hours to Charlotte, NC. It was a very long day. I was preparing for a big event for work. I was anxious but we settled in at the hotel and the boys were playing. I poured myself a glass of wine and logged on to my computer to check on any last minute updates.
Then I looked over at my husband standing next to the bed with a strange expression on his face. I knew instantly. He was having another seizure. I called his name twice and said aloud, "Oh my god you are having a seizure." That was when he grimaced baring his teeth and his left arm began to shake. I went to him and placed him on the ground rolling him onto his right side. Blood dripped from his mouth as his body convulsed. His left arm up by his ear.
I was unprepared but prepared. I have done this before but never when I was away from home with my children in a hotel room. Brenton asked of daddy was ok I said yes he is having a seizure. Emerson came over to see what was happening. I moved him back and picked up the phone.
I said simply when the front desk answered that my husband was having a seizure and I needed an ambulance. Just as he was coming to the hotel staff knocked on the door. Rolston was very combative. I tried to have him sit and rest and he was irrational and angry and in pain. I heard a woman on a walkie talkie say that they needed them to hurry because I could not handle him alone. They took the boys from the room.
Once the medics arrived Rolston was coming around and he was in agony. It was his shoulder. He was sweating and the pain was so bad he could not sit still. The medics could not give him anything for the pain. It was clear we needed to go to the hospital.
My mother was in Spain. I called my father. I said Rolston had another seizure. He asked if I needed him to come and I simply said yes. That was all I could muster. He said he would be there as soon as he could.
The ambulance is not equipped to take more than one person. Quickly I called for the car and began throwing food and toys and diapers into a bag. We would follow the ambulance to CMC the trauma hospital.
In the pouring rain, I pulled my scared children out of their carseats and walked to the waiting room. They were not equipped for people from out of town with children. We were not allowed back to see him.
I contacted my lifeline, Katy a long time colleague and friend, who lived in Charlotte. She was there in minutes bringing toys and snacks and calmly sat with my boys so I could go to Rolston.
Behind another curtain in another city I found him. This time not so much himself because of the pain from his shoulder. I helped him get a bit more comfortable while we waited for the doctor.
After what seemed like hours the doctor told us the shoulder injury was severe. Very severe. We would need ortho to tell us if surgery was needed. Hours later after tears and anger and confusion and anxiety. Surgery was the only option.
It was after midnight when I finally got the boys back to the hotel bleary eyed and exhausted. I looked at my still full glass of wine and asked myself why this was happening. Before I could even contemplate drinking the glass or the bottle my sweet Brenton asked if Daddy was alright. I simply said yes and told him it was time for bed. We were all restless but managed to finally go to sleep.
In the morning, Rolston called to say he was headed to surgery. I took the boys to breakfast and my father arrived. He was exactly what I needed. The boys were thrilled to see him and I was too.
The next few days were a blur of hotel and hospital. Rolston came through surgery so well. The fears I had melted away. He was in a wonderful hospital. The doctors were great. He was now on anti seizure meds. Everyone at home and at work was pulling for us. We were surrounded by loving support.
On our final day in Charlotte before heading home we actually had the family day we planned. Rolston on his pain meds and in his sling he had his beard trimmed. Brenton had his hair cut and Emerson had his very first haircut. We made it to lunch and Imagine On.
Out of some terrible times we made a wonderful memory watching our sweet boy in his barber chair booster with his paci in his mouth. He was better than good. Calm as could be with the clipper after a rough week. He was inspiring without realizing. Resilient.
This time I vowed it would be better. I would not let this rule my life. Of course there would be an adjustment but it would not control us. We would be ok.
The drive home was rough. It was pouring rain with no visibility at times Brenton threw up and had an accident. Rolston was unable to help but he was miraculously alright and not in any pain.
After 10 hours we made it. We made it! Safe and sound. We were home to face our new normal after another seizure.