Saturday, February 11, 2012

A Note From Evan's Mother

The following is a note from Evan Mundine's mother Frieda that she felt compelled to share after the article went live. Feel free to send Evan well wishes on Twitter @Bilzy

To All,
We are a true working class family. When our Ev was injured it meant me leaving my part-time job to care for him and my husband became our full support. My job was how we paid for our game tickets,gas money and a fair part of our groceries. It was also Ev's soccer fee and training money. Losing that income so suddenly and gaining unbelievable medical bills overnight had us completely upside down within a few weeks. It also meant that when Ev was hospitalized his father had to keep working. Bobby would drive out every other night to visit for a couple of hours when Ev was hospitalized in Austin for his leg surgeries...
He tried to call 3 times a day for short 5 minutes calls and each call I could hear the pain he felt from being so far from Ev. At the time he was working over an hour and a half away and many times his phone had no service. He took no days off and did 14 hour days trying to keep us from losing our home. So 5 minute calls were actually all the free time he had. Kenny Cooper became almost my lifeline. He would listen to me ramble on about my fears for Ev, my fears in general and he always had such warm and comforting words. Imagine day after day in a hospital with only the nurses to talk to because Ev was medicated to the point he slept most of the time. No visitors, but so many emails from players from all across the states. I honestly can admit now that I read them over and over aloud more for me to gain strength. I used to say it was for Ev, but the truth is I was scared to death and I needed the strength. Having Kenny step up the way he did by calling regularly was a blessing I will always be thankful for.

With Ev's first full open chest surgery we were in Houston. Hours from home and no family nearby again. Bobby was working on the other side of Austin which meant he was almost 7 hrs round trip from us. It was decided he would stay until Ev awoke and then head back home as he had to be at the work at 6am the next day. He left us at 11pm as Ev drifted back into his morphine induced sleep. I then sat there in ICU and just honestly cried until I had nothing left in me. Seeing my baby with a huge incision across his chest was almost more than I could handle and just when I felt like I couldn't go on Ev's phone blinked. I walked to the door where the nurse said I could. check the message and there was a text from Ian Joy asking not only about Ev, but also about his father and I. Again, my Ev's friends were there for me too. You cannot understand the way something like that can just give you the extra bit of strength you need during such trying times. During that very long and very scary hospital stay Ian, Kenny, Andy Williams, Jamie Watson,Ben Olsen, Pat Ianni, Joe Vide, Justin Moore, Clarence Goodson, Brain Mullan , Jimmy Conrad and Leo Griffin were just a text or email away day or night. Brian Farber, Danny O'Rourke and Marcia Williams stop with texts. They called regularly too. Poor Brian listened to me cry quite a bit and yet he was always so comforting and encouraging. I'm sure that wasn't easy for him and yet he still called to check on Ev. Not an hour went by during that time without a text from one of his friends. During that stay we had Glenn Davis and Eddie Robinson visiting as well as checking in via text. I need to share a story now that I truly think needs to be told.

The 4th day after surgery Ev was developing fluid in his lungs. In order to help clear it he needed to cough while I had to hold a folded towel to his chest to keep his sternum from popping. He would try to cough and almost always turn white and pass out. It was decided to try having him sit up in a chair for 20 minutes with the hope that might help him. He actually said it felt good to be in the chair at first. After about 15 minutes he asked if he could get back in bed. I called for the nurse and was told there was an emergency in another room and someone would be there to help as soon as they could. 5 minutes and then 10 more went by. I was starting to fear Ev would pass out and yet with all the cords, drains and poles there was no way I help him back to bed on my own. He could barely move and it had taken two of us to get him into the chair while a third moved his gear. Ev looked at me with so much pain showing in his eyes and all I could do was hold back my tears and frantically call for a nurse. Then Eddie showed up.

He realized right away that something was wrong and asked what we needed. I quickly explain the situation and without any hesitation he scooped Ev up into his arms. I then placed the lines on Ev, cleared the cords from his path and collected all three poles to move them along with Ev and Eddie. I've said many times since that Eddie saved us both that day. He doesn't see it the way. To him it was no real big deal. Trust me though ,it was a very big thing. My baby was hurting and honestly trapped in a way that left me no way to help ease his pain. Eddie arriving and then not being scared of all the tubes and drains was a miracle to me. Eddie has been such a support to Ev and our family.

That moment will always stand out to me though. Had you told me that Eddie Robinson, the one I remember watching with a very young Ev win the 2003 MLS Cup, would years later be in a hospital room helping me with my son...I just would never have believed it. He wasn't there as a professional player doing a good deed. He was there as a friend who had been there for Ev throughout every surgery. He was there as a brother in Christ and I will love him forever for that.

The truth is I hold all of Ev's friends in my prayers and I will support every player , no matter their team colors, wishing them all nothing but the best in their seasons. They've not only blessed our Ev's life but ours as well.

in Christ,

Frieda Mundine


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