It has been three weeks. I have little concept of time. My days revolve around 6,10,2,6 and 9 visiting times. I do not miss these, I am not late. My mental health would not tolerate it. I still hurt for My Little Darlin all the time. Now that all of the support devices have been removed from her face, if you only look at her face she looks like an angel sleeping at peace. Then you look elsewhere and see all of the tubes coming out of her body that she still can not live without. Since she has been here each time I see her I kiss her and tell her I love her, sadly she does not respond. I have to believe she will respond when she is off the sedation. For as long as I can remember, until three weeks ago, every time I left the house in the morning before work I would kiss her good by and tell her I love her. She would be asleep but she would give me a slight nod of the head. In the rare instances she was sleeping too deeply to know later she would always ask me why I did not kiss her good by. For you other husbands out there this is going to get you in trouble but I also fix her a cup of coffee the way she likes it and place it at her bedside when I leave (sorry guys but I can hear your wives now "you don't ever do anything like that for me"). I know I have been there! She is clearly better today than she was three weeks ago. Was not sure then if she would survive what happened to her. There is still fear for her survival but it is much less. There are other significant but less significant problems she must overcome now that I fear. There is a very long road ahead. The good thing is that the Ironman Triathlon should be easy after this.
She had a good night. Her oxygen was decreased to 30% this morning and when I saw her at 6am her blood oxygen saturation was holding at 99-100% (TIGT). Her ventilator rate was also down to 12 breaths per minute from 16 which makes it even better. She still has the tubes in her chest. These will stay so long as she needs the ventilator support. Her tube feedings are up to 40cc per hour and so far she is tolerating this. The target is 55. Should be able to stop the intravenous nutrition when she reaches this milestone. Her bilirubin continues to decrease ( this indicated her liver was not functioning as well as it should probable from some of the meds she was being given and the IV nutrition). She continues to spike the fever for unknown reasons. I am still scared to get too excited for fear of backsliding and of the unknown answers that we have not gotten to yet, but she is going in the right direction at least today and TIGT.
I started writing this Journal to give me an outlet and more importantly hoping that what happened to My Little Darlin Jan did not happen in vain. This same thing that happened to Jan has happened to countless others with the same or even worse results. I (hope and think) I am some day going to again be able to tell and show my wife how much I love her, many others are not as fortunate. These include John Paul Frerer (18), Christina Genco (22), Samuel Sanderford (48) and others killed while riding their bicycle along with many others seriously injured. Unless you have been through it no one can understand the pain and heartache of seeing someone close to you killed or injured like this or any other way for that matter. You can get some idea if you try to picture this happening to someone you love. Accidents happen, we can not prevent them all but I believe we can decrease these horrible tragedies. I use the word "we" because to make change it will take a cohesive many. One excellent recent change was the 3 feet Law enacted in honor of John Paul. It is terrible that John Paul had to give his life to get what should be a simple act of common sense, courtesy and respect for another human beings life made into a law. This seems so simple and is for the majority but there are a few that do not see a cyclist, runner, worker or anyone else exposed on the road as a human life, they are only seen as an object in the way. We must continue to push for awareness. Walkers and runners face the traffic. It is very apparent when doing this how many people are using their cell phone and not paying attention to the road. It is common for me to have to jump out of the way to not get hit and the driver be totally oblivious. As a biker we really do not know how many near misses there are because of cell phones. I have the sense but not the data in hand that the number of fatalities and injuries related to biker or runner versus auto has increased with cell phone use. I have been told there is research showing that cell phone use is equivalent if not worse than drunk driving. This is where I feel the most important next change needs to be made. I feel strongly that cell phone use while driving should be outlawed. I feel that the punishment if driving while using a cell phone should be the same as driving under the influence of alcohol. I feel if you injure someone when driving while using a cell phone the punishment should be the same as driving under the influence of alcohol (I am not sure but think this is vehicular manslaughter and means prison). A cell phone is a luxury not a right and most of us are old enough to know we got along fine before cell phones. Do not wait until you ruin your life by killing or seriously injuring someone or ending or ruining the life of someone else. My Little Darlin and I are living (thankfully) this nightmare. I am asking everyone to jump on this wagon. PLEASE!!!!! I YOUR HELP TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE!!!!
PUT YOUR CELL PHONE AWAY WHILE DRIVING
SHARE THE ROAD, KEEP AWARE, HELP MAKE OTHERS AWARE
GET OFF THE COUCH, DO SOME GOOD FOR YOURSELF
I love My Little Darlin and hurt for her every day,