Jamie Benzelock Update - 2003

Let me start by saying welcome everyone and thank you for supporting our website. It's amazing to see how much we have grown over the twelve years, it was 12 years ago when I wrote my last "real life story", and this year has been a very difficult one on myself and my family.

For all those who don't know about the trials and tribulations that I've been through this year, I will give you all a BRIEF breakdown.

January 11/03 - I awake to some sharp pain in my belly, the pain ultimately got worse, so bad that my mom called an ambulance and I was rushed to Seven Oaks Hospital. After hours of waiting in agony, I'm told that I was given some morphine for pain and I finally got some sleep that night.

By the next day I was being transferred by ambulance again to Health Sciences Centre by noon to have emergency bowel surgery. After the surgery which went well (I'm told again), I end up 1 or 2 days later having a heart attack. A dialysis procedure was done to rid my body from all the toxins which were in my blood stream, and I ultimately pulled through.

Later I was transferred down to another ward and about a week or two later I was back up in ICU, due to my blood pressure that had dropped. This was due to the fact that I apparently developed a collection of fluid in my abdomen, which was called post surgical abcess. After this subdued, I went back down to the ward where I once came. After 1 month of hospitalization I was discharged and sent home.

Now, one week later I was back in, my blood pressure had dropped once again, only this time dangerously low - 52/0 to be specific. In case you are wondering, normal is 120/80 or somewhere in that range. Two or three weeks later I was discharged again only I was on the home I.V. program, this lasted for another month.

The abcess cleared up and I was healthy again (well, as healthy as I could be anyway). I attempted to get back to the life I once called normal, I was out with family, my girlfriend, and my friends. As soon as Spring/Summer came I joined a softball league, and enjoyed the new people I met as well as playing with the ones I already knew.

In the early part of May I decided to have 1 more surgery...the reverse the Ileostomy that saved my life earlier in the year. After the surgery I felt happy and content. I honestly thought that the year was going to start shaping up; however, if you know me, you know Jamie doesn't take or do anything easy, this was no different. I developed what is called a fistula. In laymens terms this is a leak from the bowel through to my stomach. The thing doesn't hurt, doesn't make me sick, and I don't look sick. It's just a big pain in the butt.

Now I have left out a few things and the people that were there are saying "ya, but what about...", I feel like I have gone on long enough about this. The real reason why I update is to let everyone here know, for the first time I realize and know just how everyone works to keep this website up to date and how much is contributed. All the funds that we raise go to help families in need such as mine was this year. I do and always will have a completely positive outlook on life. Until you are faced with adversity you never truly understand what life means.

I want to thank all of you who have helped volunteer at our many fundraising events from the very bottom of my heart, and every last one of you who have supported our association through the years.

I just wanted to thank some people specifically. First my Mom, Dad, and my sister, my brothers "from different mothers" (inside joke), Craig (lil'bro), who was doing everything he could to help my parents -making sure they were well nourished and constantly at the hospital by my side, and my middle brother Kevin who had an emergency appendectomy in Chile the same day I had my emergency surgery. As well as Mike, and Mark. Mike, you've been there for as long as I can remember and I want to thank you and your family. Also, I want to thank all of my parents friends, and the rest of my friends and family who have sent me their warm wishes and prayers. Anyone I haven't mentioned, my apologies, I cherish you all.

Allow me to leave you with one thought. You never truly appreciate what you have until it's gone. Well I know all of you don't have to be gone for me to appreciate everything you all have done, and you don't know what you got till it's gone!!!!!! If we have learnt one thing from that horrible TV show we call Jerry Springer, it's his classic final thought conclusion...."Take care of yourselves, and each other!!!" See you all in years to come!!!!!