Saturday, June 11, 2011

PT Day 20, by David

Sorry about the late post today.  I have been a total couch potato for the past 20 days.  It has been psychologically difficult for me to leave this CCU waiting room for any significant length of time since this happened and have not really had any desire to do any physical activity.  This morning my good buddies Boomer and Danny showed up with my mountain bike and gear and took me to the trails at Elvis Presley State Park.    Did some sweating, little hard breathing and made my legs hurt in a good way (TIGT).  If you want to feel like a kid, learn to ride a mountain bike.  It is definitely good therapy.  The trails were fun and fast and I needed it.

It has been 20 days. My Little Darlin remains critical in the critical care unit.  Her improvement is slow but there is improvement, she is clearly better than she was almost three weeks ago.  She remains heavily sedated and still requires ventilator support.  She has been given a break from the sedation and did well for a short time  but this had to be restarted earlier this week.  Even off the sedation for a few hours did not allow it to enough time clear her body enough for her to become aware or to give me the acknowledging eye contact I so desperately want (and need).   She still has a long way to go before she can become independent of the ventilator but at least we have started working towards that goal.  Her chest X-ray is improving. This morning her oxygen has been decreased from 70% down to 45% and her blood oxygen saturation looks good (TIGT).   I forgot to post that the intracranial pressure monitor was taken out monday (TIGT).  Support devices she still has include tracheostomy tube, PEG tube, right and left chest tubes and her subclavian central intravenous line.  Her GI tract has started working and she is being fed through her PEG tube.  This is not up to the rate desired. When she can tolerate the desired rate will be able to stop the intravenous nutrition.  The way to determine if she is tolerating the tube nutrition is the nurse will periodically pull back on her PEG tube with a syringe to see how much is in her stomach.  So long as the stomach is emptying well can keep going up on the rate of nutrition.  Getting her nutrition naturally through the GI tract is much better than intravenously.  She continues to have fever.  This is concerning especially since we do not know what is causing it.  There are any number of potential sources including infectious, metabolic and less likely neurologic.  Her white blood count remains normal.  She is well covered on antibiotics.  It is not as fast as I want but she is improving and improving at a rate as would be expected given the severity of her trauma (TIGT).  My constant level of anxiety for My Little Darlin has decreased some (TIGT).

I had mentioned on an earlier post about our adventure racing.  A few years ago we were doing an adventure race.  Jan still was not a very strong mountain biker (do not tell her I said this but she was pitiful, remember our tag line no quitting, no crying, that has to do with her and a mountain bike ).  We were on a bike section of the race going down a trail.  For those of you who have not ridden mountain bikes the trail may be 12 inches wide and there are places where the trees are just wide enough for the handle bars to get through.  The terrain can be like a roller coaster track with a lot of ups and downs and curves.  The faster you can go the more thrill it is.  Jan was on the trail ahead of me and came to a down hill section she was uncomfortable with. Speed is your friend but she did not understand this.  She stopped on the trail but left her feet on the pedals, reach for a small tree to steady her self but fell any way.  It was a slo mo fall that you usually laugh at your self about.  However she calmly told me she had "hurt" her finger.  I walked up as she casually held her hand up showing me her open and dislocated fourth finger.  In other words one of the joints of her finger (This is gross if you are squeamish) was dislocated and the end of the bone was sticking out of her skin.  Of course I began running around like a chicken with its head cut off (I know, I have seen this, I did grow up in the country with chicken houses)  she calmly walked with me to get off the trail.  Well after this I told her she "should" not (if you know Jan you do not tell her she "can not") ride mountain bikes anymore.  Being the good subservient (yea right, this will get me a knock on the head) wife she is she said ok.  Her finger healed no problem.  About a year later several of us were going over to Birmingham to do a Mountain Bike race.  Jan was going as my biggest fan and supporter.  We parked and I started checking out my bike and gear.   Parisa (in the profile picture with Jan) walked up and they walked off together telling me they were going to find a bathroom.  About an hour later Jan showed up on a mountain bike in full kit (racing jersey and shorts, helmet, glasses, shoes and cleats) and a race number on her bike.  For the past few weeks she had been getting up early and getting the guys in the shop to help her become a legit mountain biker.  She did the raced.  They did announce her name at the start as the oldest female racer (please do not tell her I said this). As I said she is subservient and minds well, ya think!


I love My Little Darlin

1 comment:

  1. I don't know you or your wife, read about the incident and this blog from the San Diego Bike Commuter site. I want to say the incident sickens me as a cyclist, husband, and father. I want you to know that you and your wife are in my family's prayers. I pray that Jan makes a full recovery and that you make a full emotional recovery as well. God Bless David and try and be strong...
    Chris Fly
    San Diego, CA