Archive for Thursday, August 3, 2006

Girl’s spirits with return from hospital

August 3, 2006

Things are beginning to get back to normal for the Foster family.

Alexis Foster, who celebrated her third birthday while a patient at Children's Mercy Hospital, came home July 17 after a five-week stay following a June 10 lawn mower accident at her great-grandparent's home.

The accident took part of her foot and subjected Alexis to surgeries and what will be a long healing process.

"Probably in about a week or two she'll be able to start some physical therapy," her father, Phil Foster, said.

Since the injury, Eudora residents have collected money to help the family. Foster had been out of work because of a back injury and Alexis' mother, Donna, had to put her in-home daycare business on hiatus to be with Alexis.

With no money coming in and medical bills rising, the community pitched in to help the Fosters make ends meet.

Family friends ---- like Angie Abts ---- helped get donations for the Fosters. Throughout Alexis' hospitalization, people had the opportunity to put change in plastic containers at C&S Market or to deposit money in a special account at Douglas County Bank to help the family.

As the community support pours in, both Alexis and Phil are on the mend.

"If things go right, then I should be able to go back to work by the middle of August and Donna has started taking kids back in her daycare," Foster said. "If it wasn't for the support of the community, we wouldn't have been able to make it through the month."

The trip home has had a strong affect on his daughter, Phil said.

"Alexis is a totally different person now that we're home," Foster said. "She's crawling all over the place and she's doing good."

Family, friends and staff attempted to keep Alexis occupied during her time at the hospital with stuffed animals and games. Although it was a challenge keeping her entertained, the confining walls of her hospital room became another obstacle for the family.

At least it seemed that way when they came home, Foster said.

"Because of the crowded space we had in the hospital during the last five weeks, home seemed to have a lot of space," Foster said.

Although Foster welcomed the adjustment, he noticed differences when returning to life as normal.

"We have a long way to walk to the bathroom. We don't have any elevators to ride in," Foster said. "It's great being home."

The family's first night back led to the return of a long-missed routine.

"Before all this happened and I went to the hospital, Alexis always slept in bed with my wife. I thought it was crowded," Foster said. "Last night, we all three slept in the same bed, and there was more than enough room."

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