Friday, September 2, 2011

A Special Visit

We got back to the room on Thursday night very late, so I did not get to update.  Sgt Tom Mautone of the North Caldwell Police Department came to visit with Derek and took us out to dinner. 
I had said that while Derek is in CCU, visits would be limited to family.  Tom is family.  When my grandmother was taken to the hospital once, Tom played ball on the front yard (in uniform) with the boys while the paramedics loaded her into the ambulance.  When Derek was going through his rebellious teenage years, Tom was there.  Tom talked Derek though a lot of troubling times.  Many times when Derek wanted to punch the lights out of someone who really deserved it, Tom talked him out of it.  When Derek was having some real problems, Tom was there. 

When Derek was arrested, Tom talked his mother down!  Derek came to his friend's defense and hit a bully in school and had to be arrested (school's rule - when there is blood, there has to be an arrest).  Tom was the officer called to the scene.  My rule is, if you are arrested, stay there for the night, and I will come by in the morning.  Tom convinced me to come and get him because Derek did the right thing by standing up for his friend.  Once I had the whole story, I knew he was right.  Tom has been a good friend to Derek.

It was great seeing him.  He took us to dinner last night, and he promised to be back.  He is planning a fund raiser at home for the family to help us through this time.  The goodness in people is truly overwhelming and a blessing from God.

Overnight on Wednesday night, Dr. Mielke got Derek off the vent and on the trach collar.  Unfortunately, Derek's lungs were just not ready and his stats fells.  By Thursday night he was back on CPAP with pressure support of 5/14.  He also received 2 units of blood overnight.  His trach began secreting again.
Plastics and the ortho guys came to discuss the flap and the plates an screws for the arm.  We are on track to do it next week, God willing.  It looks as if the infections are on the run from the arm and will be gone by then!

Derek was removed from the TPN because the tube feedings are working!  Yes!  It hurts him when the J-tube is accessed, but it is working.  We just need to remind the nurse to be gentle.

The infections, while on the run from certain areas, still elude us.  His white count was back up to 32.  They are tricky creatures.  His fever was 99 all day, so while not high, it's curious that the white cell count is high while the fever is low.

Yesterday, he was finally allowed some Sprite.  He said it was "heaven."  First taste of something in six weeks.  He cannot swallow, so we have to suction it out, but it was still something with taste.  The look on his face was priceless.

Derek is doing so much better.  His color is good and his personality is shining through.  Everytime Master Sgt Bell walks in, she says "climb to glory," and he responds, "to the top!  All the way!"

The prayers are working.  We will get him there.  Thank you for all of the support, love and prayers.  It means so much.

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