Recovering From Surgery With A Wicked Sense Of Humor – Part 1

Be kind to others. Your unassuming act of kindness might become someone’s memory of a lifetime.

A close friend Jessie recently underwent major back surgery. Similar to the back surgery Tiger Woods had….gnarly! Jessie has lupus and a laundry list of other things that led to the surgery. Her sister Anna was here for 11 days, her parents for 2 weeks, and during this time we have all worked together in harmony. Family, friends and neighbors have rallied together to walk and feed Jessie’s adorable dog Chloe, wash clothes, do dishes, cook, clean, run errands, and any other daily tasks needed. This weekend her sister Marta is here from Boston for a couple of days.

The reason for this article is to talk about gratitude. I know that Jessie is beyond grateful to the team of people that have been caring for her and Chloe during recovery. We are talking two months pretty much flat on her back with ice packs front to back, a lovely plastic urine bag, a plethora of pharmaceuticals and pain killers daily and people running her home and life – each in their own unique way. What we are finding is our own deep gratitude in being able to care for and support our friend. Quite often several of us gather on the deck for long talks, quality Kombucha for Jessie, food, drinks, sunsets, and laughter. It’s a win win for all.

Jessie has a wicked sense of humor. Needless to say, the love and humor each day is a constant. This girl never complains and is grateful for every big and little thing as she progresses from bed to bouts of walking each day. My husband Cody walks and feeds Chloe most morning and evenings at this phase. I’m on food patrol and have had a great time preparing delicious gluten-free baked goods, as well as food I know our gal loves. Christine cleans like no other, so we clear the way. Progressing from a big catheter to a smaller bag that Jessie can empty herself has been a constant source of entertainment, as is the fanny pack she wears while on her walker. As they say, laughter is the best medicine.

Gratitude is one quality of life that keeps on giving. You never know how it will come back to bless you.

I will never have the wicked sense of humor Jessie has…most of us can’t even come close. So, that being said – Jessie will be writing Part II on Gratitude from her perspective when she is feeling better. Stay tuned – trust me it will be worth the wait!


  1. Jessie you are so blessed to have a wonderful group of special friends and family to lend their hearts and hands in your recovery. Sending you thoughts love and prayers. I know you would do the same for all of them.
    Deb you and Cody are so special.

    • Debra Oakland says

      Thank you and yes Jessie would do the same for any of us at any time. Thank you for this beautiful comment. XO

    • BJ said it perfectly. I’ve been blown away by the love of family & friends in recent weeks. I wouldn’t be here without these incredible people, many of whom are facing their own challenges & heartaches while caring for me round-the-clock. Deb and Cody have been with me every step of the way, and are incredibly special souls — I could write pages about their giant hearts, generous spirits, and zest for life. At this point they’re family. <3

  2. Sally Coles says

    Love your article about kindness! I agree it’s such a special gift we can give and receive everyday day from the smallest kindness to a ‘cup overflowing’.
    I have had the pleasure to meet Jessie and to see for myself how cheerful and pleasant she remains despite all kinds of pain and discomfort, a model patient!
    And all the acts of kindness going on around her, can totally see how and why this was inspiration for your article. It’s all about the Love & Kindness….

    • Debra Oakland says

      Sally it really is about Love & Kindness. I see many people complain about small things. To see Jessie living with lupus and all she has to manage, it sure would humble those with small grumbles. Thank you for your lovely comment.

    • Yes — it’s all about love, kindness, and fluffy peach pies landing on one’s lap at the most opportune moments. πŸ˜‰ (Thanks again, Sally. I’m loving the chance to get to know you and Joe better through our patio visits). xo

  3. Kindness is healing for all; the receiver as well as the giver. Laughter is a great medicine, along with traditional methods. Thanks for sharing yours and your friend, Jessie’s experience with us. Many Blessings, Lisa xx

  4. Laughter is the best medicine and love heals all things. Thank you for sharing your friends story and the kindness she is receiving. What a blessing for all involved. I can’t wait to read her point of view on this experience!

    • Debra Oakland says

      Thanks Cindy – truly a blessing. I’m also looking forward to Jessie’s humorous point of view on her experience!

  5. Humor has been such a blessing in my life. My daughter Fiona and I have a wicked sense of humor when we are together after living through many challenges together. We always find a way to take the energy out of a challenge with a humorous perspective. I look forward to reading Jessie’s perspective and wish her and her healing team all the best!

    • Debra Oakland says

      I love to hear humor is a focus in your family’s life Kelley. Wicked sense of humor…even better! Jessie’s challenges, along with her sense of humor and intelligence, give her challenges in life a lighter perspective. Thanks so much for your comment and healing wishes for Jessie and her team!