23 Feb 2007

Rachael (Little Lamb) Nicole Valentine

Author: Bobby Valentine | Filed under: Bobby's World, Family

Rachael (Little Lamb) Nicole Valentine

On Saturday it seemed like Rachael just had another cold or a virus. After all some stomach bug has been making the rounds here in the desert. By Tuesday it had become painfully obvious this was not a cold or a bug. Rachael was curled up on her bed, rocking back and forth and crying painfully.

Pamella took Rachael to the Doctor. We did not have one yet so she found a clinic on Tanque Verde Rd and pulled in. After a brief examination the doctor insisted we go to the emergency room at the Tucson Medical Center. We arrived at the ER around 4:30 pm and were there for a very long time. They did x-rays, blood work, urine samples and whatever else you can think of. Around 10 pm the decision was made to admit Rachael to the hospital but there were no rooms available so we had to stay in the ER. The decision was made that Pamella would take Talya home and I would remain in the ER with Rachael. During the night (at 1 am) Rachael got an ultrasound done. They pumped her little body with moriphin several times.

A surgeon showed up about 8 am on Wednesday. After more blood tests and more “consultation” the decision was made to take Rachael to the operation room. The doctors decided that Rachael was suffering from an inflamed appendix. But they were not positive. They wanted to “look” and see. We were not happy with this situation but decided to listen to the doctor anyway. We just wanted her not to be in any more pain.

I thought the night was bad. And believe me it was bad staying in “bed 22” in the ER. But the surgery was much harder than I expected. When they are about to put your little girl “under” that is not a good feeling … if you have not experienced it you have no clue. I know because I had no clue until confronted with it. Seeing the doctor one hour and 22 minutes later coming down the hall with a smile on her face was one of the greatest things I have ever experienced.

They did operate on Rachael and removed her appendix. They also drained 150 mLs of fluid. As of now we do not know where all that fluid came from. But the doctor said that was a lot of fluid in the pelvic region in an eleven year old.

Right about lunch time today (Thursday), we wheeled Rachael out of the hospital and loaded her into the car. We drove home and put her on the couch where she promptly went to sleep. Later today she wanted to watch Pete’s Dragon and I think we are out of the woods.

Through this ordeal Pamella has been a wonder woman. Talya has been concerned for her sister. And our church family at Palo Verde was great. We even had friends from Milwaukee praying and calling. There were even quite a few folks from Nashville praying.

Thank you, Abba Father, for being with Rachael. In the middle of the night when we did not know what was happening, I confess to be scared. You provided us Trisha, a wonderful nurse. She took care of Rachael in a loving way … and that took care of me. Thank you, Father, for being with Rachael in the operation room when she was scared and giving her peace. Thank you, Father for watching over my little lamb … she is most precious to me. Amen.

Bobby Valentine

35 Responses to “Rachael (Little Lamb) Nicole Valentine”

  1. Bob Hendren Says:

    Bobby and Pamela:

    Great to hear that Rachel is improving; I know how scary this can be. Many years ago my daughter Diane had a similar experience. In her case it turned out to be an ovarian cyst that had burst, creating peronitis.(ck sp) She was a very sick girl, but she is still going strong today…Thank GOD!

  2. hermit greg Says:

    Many well wishes from Iowa, BV. Appendicitis is superbly frightening. May God grant Rachael, you, and the rest of your family comfort and healing.

  3. johndobbs Says:

    Thank God for all of his wonderful mercies. You’ll never forget this, will you Bobby? I am so happy that Rachel is on the mend. We can never take one moment with our children for granted.

  4. George Mearns Says:


    I’m sure glad that Rachel is recovering. I know what you are going through. Our youngest daughter, when she was 9 months, had emergency surgery at Childrens Hospital in D.C. I still remember the doctor carrying her down what seemed like a long hallway to surgery, and she was watching us the whole time. God blessed us in that she quickly recovered and now she is finishing up studies as an EMT. But those were tense moments while we waited for word.

    You all are in our prayers.

    George Mearns

  5. DJG Says:

    I understand…my daughter had to have multiple surgeries after a car wreck when she was 13…it was the hardest thing I ever did.

    I am glad your Little Lamb is home doing better.

  6. Steve Puckett Says:

    Nothing is more precious than our children. God be praised for taking care of your daughter.


  7. Lisa Says:

    I agree, praise God that Rachael is being healed! When I was 12 I began having ear problems, which resulted in having a couple surgeries. I could SEE the stress on my Daddy’s face, that it was so hard for him to watch me going through this. And I could see that despite the fact that he was trying to hide it! Somehow I think my heart loved him all the more that he was hurting too. Now that I’m a mom, I think I understand more of what he went through. It’s something you can’t really fully understand until you’re a parent, just like I can’t fully understand what you went through over the weekend with Rachael’s ordeal. All I do know is that it must have been hard. I’m very grateful for your family’s sake that the problem was diagnosed and taken care of. Give Rachael an extra special hug from all of us. 🙂

  8. Greg Says:

    I had a pretty good day … read your blog and am thankful the nightmare turned into a good day for you. Will pray that God will take care of whatever was causing that fluid to build up. Glad the surgery went well. And you are right, I can’t imagine having to see my child go through that.

  9. Wade Tannehill Says:

    Glad Rachel is okay. Tell her hello. Maybe she still remembers me. We still have the horse picture she drew for us in Abilene.

  10. Ancient Wanderer Says:

    I’m sorry Bobby.
    We are praying for Rachel.
    You know I know how it is to deal with a little one in the hospital.

    Tell Pam we are praying.


  11. David Says:

    Thank you Lord! My own appendectomy was 6 years ago, and the pain was BAD, so I can feel somewhat for Rachel (somewhat, because time helps us forget the intensity of the physical pain). Parents get to make the hard decisions, that is why we are paid the big bucks. 🙂
    I know it wasn’t easy, watching and not knowing how best to proceed, and you had to trust those strangers (okay they are Doctors) to know what to do, how to do it, and to truly have her best interests at heart.
    Again a prayer of thanks to God for Rachel’s safety and healing.

  12. Ben Overby Says:


    What an ordeal! We can all celebrate Rachel’s recovery. May he keep all of you safe and healthy as you continue to grow in His good grace.


  13. Tim Archer Says:

    I know the few issues we’ve had with our kids have greatly increased the admiration I have for parents of kids with long illnessses.

    Glad things are better. Hope the move continues to go well.

    Grace and peace,

  14. Joel Solliday Says:

    Bobby and family,

    Sounds like God’s mercies carried the day (and night too). So much for which to be grateful. Soldier on, together!

  15. John Roberts Says:

    There aren’t many things worse than having your children in the hospital. I’m glad you have her home and on the road to recovery.

  16. Zack Says:

    I’m greatful everything turned out Ok. I’m praying for Rachael that she’ll make a full and complete recovery. I’m sure it was a scarry ordeal for her and for all of y’all. I’m praying for all of you. God bless! Peace to all of you in Jesus.

  17. Tony Arnold Says:

    My heart is breaking for you and your family Bobby. I have a 6 year old daughter and I understand your pain, although we have be fortunate enough that I cannot fully empathize.

    I am saying a prayer for your family right now, and will continue to do so, both of thanks and for continued protection.


  18. slstoll Says:

    When our oldest daughter was about 3, she had to have some surgery and watching her go under the anesthesia was one of the most difficult things for me. Scary indeed! You are correct when you state that unless you, as a parent, have experienced it, you really have no idea.
    We prayed for Rachael and are thankful that she is home recovering – you and Pamella too! We are thankful that the doctors and nurses took good care of all of you, and pray that your time in Tucson will get better from here on!

  19. Brian Nicklaus Says:

    Praise God!

    I dread going through that but all parents go through something at some point. My brother-in-law survived a few year ordeal with leukemia.

    hang in there. we will keep praying, glad she is home.

    God bles

  20. Neva Says:

    I have not been there but I have been on my knees in prayer for my child and now I am for yours, thanking God for His healing and His power and His mercy.
    Peace and prayers

  21. Josh Says:

    Wow… what a scary ordeal. God is good, buddy.

  22. Mark Says:

    Sorry to hear about your scare. Glad everything is working out ok. We’ll keep you in our prayers.


  23. Brian Nash Says:

    Hello Bobby and Pamella,
    It saddened me greatly when I heard Diane talking about Racheal being in the hospital and that she was scheduled for surgery. The best thing was being able to see her after her surgery was completed,and listening to her assuring me that she is a tough little lady. She’s a tough little lady indeed.

    I rejoice in the knowledge that our Father was waching over her, and everyone else in your family and that your little lamb is safe and resting as well as is possible.

    Love and respect,

    Brian & Kathy Nash

  24. Alan Says:

    Very scary. Thanks to God that it is over, and ended well.

  25. MommyHAM Says:

    blogger’s giving me fits…

    I had a longer response, but will suffice to say, glad that everything turned out, yay God, and we are praying 🙂


  26. Messianic Gentile Says:

    Wow, Bobby. Just reading that caused me great anxiety. I really feel for ya. That is sooooo frightening.

    I am rejoicing with you. May God be praised.

    Many blessings…

  27. Stoned-Campbell Disciple Says:

    I want to thank everyone for praying for Rachael and our family. She woke up about 2 am with pain and needed to have some medicine. We drank some hot tea together for about an hour or so in the middle of the night.

    Rachael is doing better somewhat today. She slept most of the day waking up around 3 pm. She has not eaten a whole lot but we have gotten some food and lots of Sprite in her. This evening we found “Kung Fu” on TV and watched it together.

    I thank God for her progress.

    Bobby Valentine

  28. Dee O'Neil Andrews Says:

    Good grief, Bobby! I wondered why I hadn’t seen you by Finding Direction in several days and why your story for Grace Notes had not yet appeared, but I’m just so sorry it was because of your sweet daughter.

    I, too, had an emergency appendectomy one evening back in January 2005 after being in a lot of pain for about 24 hours and spending several hours in the E.R. And I was quite ticked off about it because they told me I was too way too OLD to be having it after having told me I had been way too YOUNG to be having all of the other surgeries and problems I had in the many months before that, including open heart surgery with 5 by-passes and four strokes!

    I figured at some point in my life someone should have really taken out my appendix when I’d had previous major abdominal surgeries, but they (the doctors, of course) hadn’t, so here I was in my 50s having it taken out the hard way.

    But I would have gone through all of that to be able to save one of my kids having to go through even the simplest of procedures! No doubt about it.

    I pray she will have a quick and full recovery.

    Blessings to you all today (tonight)! Dee

    P. S. You’ll have to catch up over at Finding Direction the past few days, it’s been pretty exciting over there!

  29. Wiley Says:


    A dad’s worst nightmare is when his little girl is sick and hurting and he can’t do a thing about it. It never get’s any better no matter how old they get. My three daughters are now grown (30 and 28/28) but when they are sick and/or hurting, they are still just my little girls back when they were nine or ten.

    I’m glad Rachael is doing well and on the mend (which means you are too!).

    Grace to you and peace.

  30. Anonymous Says:

    As a parent who had his daughter undergo heart surgery at the age of four I can identify with your concern. Today that little girl is grown and has two children of her own.
    gary mccauley

  31. Anonymous Says:

    PS By the way, her name is Rachel too

  32. Bobby and Tamie Says:


    Catching up on blogs and saw this. Glad the surgery went well and Rachel is doing better! I had an emergency appendectomy a few years ago, but I was in so much pain, I was ready for them to put me to sleep! I can’t imagine having to endure this with one of my children.

    May God continue to bless you and your family.

    — Bobby R.

  33. Amy Says:

    I am just now reading this, and I sure hope your sweet girl is doing well now! (We have an 11 year old Rachel too.)

  34. Sean McClue Says:


    I am glad to hear you passed the test and that Rachel is doing better.

    I feel for you when you talk about what you where going through. I remember the doctors trying to put my daughter under one time here in Mexico. That was super hard. Especially not fully understanding Spanish at the time. I felt complete helplessness. I have only felt that feeling one other time when my son had HSP.


  35. Bob Bliss Says:

    I’m Lisa’s Dad. I just got around to reading some other parts of your blog and came across this. The pain I felt about Lisa came about because she suffered with her pain for several months. The doctor kept assuring us it was just puberty. Finally we decided to try another doctor and withing a couple of days he had a diagnosis. Unfortunately the condition had been around long enough to cause hearing loss to Lisa. The was a tough time for us to have to watch a child of ours go through that.

    Lisa didn’t mention that her brother (our son Trey the youngest of the family) had an appendix operation as well. He was 15 (8 years ago). He came home one Saturday evening from a youth group event with slight stomach cramps. After a few days of vomiting and the suspicion that something more than the flu was afoot we took him to the doctor. He assured us that it was viral. A few more days wait and we knew that his diagnosis was incorrect. We went back. A blood test revealed an infection somewhere. It was too late in the day and week to be sent somewhere for testing so they admitted him to the hospital. Within a day or two they determined that his appendix had burst over two weeks ago! They operated on him and found that his appendix had been tucked up in an unusual spot so the toxins were kept contained. That explains why he didn’t exhibit the usual symptoms. Our church family was wonderful and so was the nursing staff at that hospital. They kept the bed next to our son free so we could stay with him through the night. Once he got home we had to hook him up to a drip machine every 6 hours for antibiotics for the next two weeks. He missed about 5 weeks of school all total. I truly know what it is like to have your children hurting and you feel helpless about their condition. God is truly faithful and so are his people. I’m glad your daughter is doing well. May God bless your family and your ministry.

Leave a Reply