Urban Cowboy's wife's inspiring journey

I have been given Grant's permission to share with you that his family is going through a very challenging journey, such as most of us will (fortunately) probably never face in our lifetime. A little over two weeks ago, his wife, Nicole, who I'd venture is around 30, had her aorta burst (the main artery to the heart). This also caused her to have a significant stroke.

There were several days where she was unconscious in ICU, and it wasn't clear whether she'd survive, and then of course there were (and are) concerns about how badly the brain had been damaged. The immediate danger to Nicole's life has passed, but I'm saddened to say that there is significant brain damage and a very long, hard road ahead as Nicole again learns how to eat, walk, speak, etc. The positive news is that she appears to have retained her personality and knows who her family are, though her short-term memory remains affected at this stage. Grant will get very familiar with the rehab ward over the coming months.

I particularly wanted to share this with you because Grant's courage, and leadership of his family (which includes 4 children under 10), has been an example of which anybody would be proud. He has not only remained strong and confident, but even managed to retain his wicked sense of humour throughout, and find time to update the many interested parties on Nicole's progress. (I'm not sure when he's eating and sleeping; I suspect he's not doing much of either.)

Please join many others in offering your support to this wonderful family at this difficult time.
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Thanks for posting Tracey, it is sobering to realise how ones life can change so dramatically so quickly and what was important one day can become insignifcant the next as something life changing like this happens.

Thank god we live in an era when things like what happened to Nicole can be treated with all the equipment and skill we now have at our disposal.

My thoughts are with you UC and I dearly hope that your wife makes a full and sustained recovery.
I'm a bit lost for words. Such a shock when events like this happen so suddenly. My deepest sympathy and encouragement for the most positive recovery and outcome for the whole family. :)
I can't imagine what this would be like for your family to go through UC, but I know what a tough cookie you are :) My thoughts and prayers are with your wife and the family. Wishing her a speedy recovery!
Thank you for your post Tracey.

Grant, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family as you battle through this difficult time. Rehab will be a long hard road but I hope that you and your loved ones can come through with strength and courage.
I saw your FB update but did not know it was UC's wife.

I will pray for Nicole to full recovery. It's amazing to be able to stay positive and in good spirits. It's exactly what everyone needs to do.

My sil has rcently bene diagnosed with SCLC (small cell lung cancer) and her only symptom was a mild cough! She's 40y.o does not cmoke nor drink and has 2 young kids. Prognosis is not good.

Have to pray for not only the sick, the carers and the famillies but also just to be thankful to you are in good health. Health means more than property and money could ever mean to anyone.
Wow, don't know what to say. Thanks for sharing Trace.

To Grant, mate, I can't begin to imagine what you must be going through. My thoughts go out to you and your wife (and family of course) and wish your wife a speedy recovery (as speedy as it can be anyway).

Words on a screen from someone you've never met probably seem irrelevant at this point, but I've always thought of Somersoft as a kind of community, so it genuinely saddens me when I hear these tales.

To Grant and Nicole and your children,

I just want to wish you all well at this difficult time for your family and trust that you all find the strength and courage to work towards a bright future.

The role of a carer and support person is a hard one and requires much energy and dedication as I'm sure you are finding.

My wish would be strength for you and the children, Grant and a positive outlook at the road ahead.

Nicole, may the support and love of your family help speed you towards recovery.

Thank you for letting us know Tracey.
I'll add my best wishes as well. I imagine Nicole's friends and family are helping out with food and other practical help but it is so nice to know that people you have not actually met are sending their good wishes and prayers.
wow - my positive thoughts go to you, grant, and you lovely wife. she is strong (has to be to be married to you ;)) and age is on her side - and a wonderful husband to encourage her, and make her laugh, every step of the way.

we are all thinking of you and wishing all the best.

A ruptured AAA (Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm) is an often sudden and unexpected event with a mortality rate of up to 90%.

Grant, hang in there buddy... Hope you look after yourself as well as your beautiful family

All the best mate, Steve
A ruptured AAA (Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm) is an often sudden and unexpected event with a mortality rate of up to 90%.
I suspect that's what it was, and her survival just proves what everybody who knows her is saying - she's an amazingly strong lady.

Grant is definitely retaining a sense of humour, helpfully teasing his wife when she forgets things, laughing about her "nanna frame", reminding her which way up is, etc. Apparently Nicole emerged from unconsciousness briefly to give Grant a hard time about asking for a TV in ICU to watch some motor sports, so he now figures that since she even nags him whilst barely clinging to life, all bets are off and he's free to tease her, too. :D They prove that a sense of humour is indeed the greatest of gifts. He also a very strong faith that is serving him well at this difficult time.

Thank you all for your lovely words; I knew you'd all have some kindness to offer, and I'm sure it's appreciated by Grant and Nicole, and their family.
Thanks for all the kind words!!

Heya folks...

just wanted to stop by and say thanks soooooo much for all the kind words and messages I have been receiving here and as private messages/emails/texts etc.

there are so many I simply do not have enough hours in the day to reply to them all individually - but I have read them all and please know that they mean a heck of a lot right now!

I gave my go ahead for Tracey to post this as there are so many people here I know well - and many more that I have not met, but enjoy your online company and would be very much wanting to offer my support to you in a time of need to. Thanks Tracey!!!

Just to embarrass her - Tracey has been a wonderful support, with many kind words and assistance during our darkest hours - she is a beautiful soul and I really appreciate her! Love ya Trace!!;)

To put you in the picture and fill in some gaps - Nic is 34...she suffered an vertebral arterial disection which means the artery within the spinal cord ruptured and sent a whole shed load of rubbish up into her brain causing the stroke. not quite the Aortic blowout mentioned above, but just as dangerous due to a couple of other issues that we didn't know about showing up and making this many times worse than it normally would have been. We nearly lost her several times across that first weekend - but being the stubborn coot she is, decided to hang around for a bit to annoy me more! :p

we face at least a couple more weeks in rehab, followed by modifications to the home and the best part of a year of outpatient rehab as well. There are many functions that we are now fairly sure she won't be able to do again, including drive...with four parasites...I mean kids, that is going to present some major challenges alone before we even think about Nic's long term care issues

anyways, thanks again for all the support - awesome to be apart of this community and I hope to return the favour sometime!

kindest regards
Grant, Nic, Emily, Timothy, Keeley & Freyah...

p.s. obviously I may be a little scarce around here for a while - but fear not - I will return on occasion to bash southsiders, champion the (good) agents cause and fight for the underdog getting mauled by heartless pundits!! not to mention post the odd militant ranga tirade when I need to vent!!
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Grant (UC) and Tracey (Ozperp),
Even though we have never met, this story has made me sit here and realise that the health problems I have had over the past year are insignificant to what Grant Nicole and their family are going through.

Just the other day I found out a work collegue had a major stroke at 43 and is paralysed down one side. Life offers no rhyme nor reason and can be a downright b!tch at times, but nevertheless we need to savour all it offers as we just don't know when our number is up.

I wish upon a speedy recovery to your wife and offer my thoughts to your family during this difficult time. Grant, if ever your family trek to SA, you are welcome to stop by and say g'day.

Project 1080

The project 10 IPs in 80 mths.
UC (Grant) you have become a part of the Somersoft family since you have been here.

As family we feel a little part of each other.

My thoughts, and even prayers, such as they are, are with you and your family.

From all of us in this extended community and family.
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