I thought I would share with everyone the update that I sent to Dr. Cantu last night... it tells the whole story :)
Hola Dr. Green Shirt!!!
I am writing to you right now from HOME!!!! We just got home from the airport and right now I am laying in my own bed, in my own house, in my beautiful new bedroom, surrounded by family... It’s unreal.
They are all just staring at me, smiling and crying... looking at me as if I am this brand new masterpiece that was just put on display in a museum. Nobody is sure if they should touch it, or what to even say about it... they are just completely amazed at the "new Jessica" that has been returned home to them!! ...A Jessica who can now move around, sit up, talk, laugh, be hugged, held, touched, kissed (maybe too much!!) loved and EAT with them!! It's beyond belief. I think you would be very jealous of the amazing feast my Italian grandmother cooked for us today! :)
We started our day at 3 AM yesterday leaving our apartment in Mexico and heading to the airport for our 6 AM flight. Cindel slept over with her mom Claudia so they could drive us.
On the flight from Monterrey to Atlanta I was able to watch the sunrise! It was incredible!!
The flights themselves went pretty well and I held up better than I expected! The staff and everyone at Delta went out of their way to make me feel comfortable and more at ease.
Every time the flight got bumpy, or I was feeling anxious, or nauseous, I just looked at my favorite picture—the one of you and Patch Adams and it immediately made me smile and feel better.
The Mexican security check went fine-- they read your doctors letter and didn't touch me at all. On the USA side though, they took me into a private room and wanted to "gently" touch me everywhere and swab both me and my wheelchair for "further" inspection.
It was time consuming, but everyone was really nice and so excited and happy for me when I told them my story and how I was traveling home for the first time!
Me with Nikki
I think the part of the trip that caused the most discomfort was having to be transferred into this small “aisle” wheelchair to get in and out of the plane. Definitely not comfortable at all.... and I am pretty small, I can't imagine how anyone larger than me could even get on one of these things!!
On the plane rides my mom (obviously) told EVERYBODY (cleaning crew, flight attendants, pilots, whoever!) the whole story about my miracle in Mexico.
Mom and I
We also introduced everyone to "Nino Luigi "Patch" Cantu"-- my bear, who has never left my side for the past 2.5 years! :)
All of the pilots came over and sat down with me, congratulated me, wished me well and took pictures with me too!
This is me with the two pilots from flight 4988, David and Jon
Me with Rob, Otis, Dena and Tony on flight 1430
My mom somehow even managed to get herself invited up into the cockpit, with the pilots, to fly the plane! (Now, THAT is a scary thought!)
As I was wheeled out of the terminal I could already see the signs and hear people screaming my name!!
I felt like my heart was going to beat out of my chest! Finally, seeing my family again and their excitement over seeing me -healed-was just the greatest Christmas gift I have ever had in my life.
The three Stevens girls-- back together again!!!
My daughter (dog) Molly was at the airport waiting for me dressed in cute pink ballerina dress. I was so worried that she wouldn’t remember me, but she did! She ran over to me, jumped on top of me, kissed me and fell asleep in my arms!
There are really no words to describe today, except perfect.
Your ears must have been ringing because as we sat around re-uniting, all we could talk about was you! My uncles wore green shirts (my godfather even wore green pants!) in honor of you!
We had a professional videographer at the airport to capture this moment for our family and at the end of the tape he went around and had everyone say a special message and wave “hola” to you in Mexico!
I am extremely exhausted and I know I am running on pure adrenaline right now. I will probably crash for the next few days, but I wanted you to have these photos tonight, so that you can feel like you were here with me, because to me, you were. The reality is, for the rest of my life, every new or happy moment that I am ever blessed to get to experience, you always will be a big part of it because you gave me this chance to have a new life!
Seeing my Florida home for the first time in 5.5 years!!!
So, just know that tonight, because of you, the Stevens' family is sleeping under the same roof for the first time in 2.5 years!!!
Goodnight, Dr. Green Shirt, Thank you for saving my life. I love you…
.....Actually, WE ALL love you!
Te extraño mucho!
Your #1 Patient
"Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things."- 1 Corinthians 13:7
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