Friday, September 30, 2011

A Piece of My Mind And Holding My Tongue

I have given so many people a piece of my mind, I am surprised I have any left for myself!
But I passed a major test today.  I found myself on the elevator with the little resident who failed to make the right decision and put Derek in harm's way on Saturday night.  I prayed for the Lord to give me the strength to keep my mouth shut.  He tested me.  He stopped that elevator on every floor.  I didn't say a word.  I took off as soon as the doors were open enough for me to fit, but I kept my mouth shut.  I turned the problem over to the people in charge and I will leave it at that.  I already spoke my mind to her on Saturday night.  Nothing good will come of giving her another piece of my quickly dwindling mind.  I really don't need that restraint team showing up.

This morning Derek was visited by Senator Jack Reed (D-RI).  He was very nice.  Graduate of West Point, Army Ranger, Vietnam vet.  He and Derek had a nice chat about war, the army, Derek's medical treatment, etc.  It was a wonderful visit and really raised Derek's spirits.

Holy mail truck, Batman!  Talk about getting the call out!  Thank you to everyone who is sending cards and care packages.  It takes a while to make it through the mail system here, but once it does, the Liason office says they know where to find us because Derek gets a stack of mail!  They had to send a couple of people to deliver this week's stack!  Thank you SO much!  It really is appreciated, and he had a huge smile on his face!

Derek went back to Interventional Radiology today.  After what happened on Sunday when he felt most of the procedure and suffered through it (for almost four hours only to have them not be able to place the tube), they had an anesthesiologist present.  Giving them a piece of my mind worked.  They fixed the issue and Derek was comfortable.

But most importantly, the specially ordered tube actually worked.  They were able to get it placed.  Unfortunately, because it was a specially ordered tube, they didn't have the right supplies to hook up the bag to drain the G portion (now called "aspiration") or the J portion (now called "feeding").  They jury rigged something because military personnel are awesome like that.  It's not as easily manipulated as the other J/G tube he had, but since it is further placed in his anatomy, this one should actually work.  Finally!
After the procedure, Derek was taken to PACU because he was given a stronger sedative.  He was given propofol, versed and fentynal.  His blood pressure was fine.  Too bad that combination cannot be used when he goes for regular surgery or we would not have problems with this flap procedure.
Anyway, he called for me in PACU and the first thing he said to me was, "It worked.  Pasta for dinner."  Sorry, honey.  Still on full liquids.  Maybe soon.

Today I met with Dr. Howard and Dr. Perdue to discuss the flap procedure.  Dr. Howard showed me pictures of Derek's arm!  He asked me if I could handle it!  Seriously?  I watched my own c-section!  I raised 5 kids by myself, 4 of them boys, some of them frequent flyers to the ER.  It was interesting to see the exposed bone, muscle and tissue and not as bad as I thought it would be.  They explained the procedure in full detail.  I feel better.  I still have some concerns, and this is going to suck worse than an industrial vacuum for him, but we will get him through it.

The plan is on Monday, they will try to do the free flap.  If his BP decides to do the droppy thing and play games, they do the TEF as the back up.  That is the safer procedure, the shorter procedure and the one with less chance of failure.  Am I happy?  No.  Am I sure?  No.  But I am going to trust Dr. Perdue.  When my kid had less than a fifty percent chance of living, he saved him.  Derek is still not out of the woods, and he thinks he will be fine through this.  I hope he realizes Mom will need a little hand holding during this.
There was more talk today about polytrauma rehab.  Derek will not be happy, but it looks like it might be best.  He may not be strong enough for amp rehab right away, and polytrauma rehab will kick is butt into shape for a couple of months until he is ready.  It is intensive OT and PT for a couple of hours a day instead of just 45 minutes per day.  If that is what he needs, then maybe it is best.  It is stll weeks away, because the x-fixes in the pelvis will not be removed for at least another three weeks, so we have time to discuss and consider it.

Derek is still on the protonix.  When the nurse said she was giving it, I said, "plutonium?  You're going to make him glow?"  She laughed.

My assignment from Dr. West is to get more wounded warriors in to visit.  Derek was down in the dumps this morning and ready to give up.  After I kicked his butt a little, he cheered up and said he realized God had bigger plans for him.  Dr. West told me Derek wants me there.  He doesn't want me to leave.  I'm not.  Dr. West thinks it will help for him to have more wounded warriors to talk to him.

Anyway, surgery in the a.m.  It's almost midnight and I am exhausted.  Up at 05:00 to get to PACU.  Ortho and urology on board tomorrow.  Oh!  Got to ortho today and gave them a little piece of my mind about the lack of communication!  Got them to agree to come around a little more often.  Apologies and promises.  We shall see.

Good night.  God bless.  Love to all!

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