Sunset at Prien Lake Park

Sunset at Prien Lake Park

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Taking Care

Everyone says to Bob and I, "Take care of yourselves." And we know this is important. At the same time, it's incredibly difficult. Sleep is a huge issue. Eating is random and rarely healthy. And exercise is non-existent. At Lake Charles Memorial, my primary source of exercise was taking the stairs between the third, second, and first floors. Here at TCH, the stairwells are limited to employees with coded badges. We can try to get outside for short walks, but as long as Eric's in ICU, we don't like to be too far away. I'll do the best I can, but what's most important right now is Eric. I can whip myself back into shape later.

As in Lake Charles, the staff here are impressed with what a great patient Eric is. I'm quite impressed myself. How can a fourteen year old boy, who's been on a ventilator four of the past five weeks, be so calm, relaxed, cooperative, pleasant, peaceful? He has occasional periods of increased anxiety, when he asks for some sedation. But he's trusting, seemingly without fear, amazingly accepting. It's almost baffling to me. Surely, he has the presence of the Spirit within.

Eric tolerated weaning well again today. They decreased the amount of suction on the chest tubes by half, hopefully a happy medium that will keep the lungs expanded, keep the pneumothoraxes at bay, and possibly allow the leaks to close. Because of the the length of time these leaking holes have been patent, no one is optimistic at this point that they'll close on their own. Current vent settings: PSV 13, PEEP 5, FiO2 .50. The critical care docs are talking about extubating maybe tomorrow, or the weekend. But the looming question is what do the surgeons have planned? We haven't talked to them yet today.


Jon said...


It sounds like you are taking care of yourselves as best you can. Let God do the rest for now.

It is encouraging to hear that they may extubate him soon. I hope that he can stay that way for a while and that, maybe, with the new suction settings his lungs can start to heal at least somewhat on their own.

Continued prayers and God bless!

Mrs. Stretch said...

We are so hoping every day for a positive turn for you all. I can't imagine how you are holding it together. You are a strong family, and your faith is amazing. I want you to know that we are praying for all of you, you as parents, Eric as he works to recover, and Andrew as he waits for his brother and parents to return.

jess said...

To hear how calm and peaceful Eric is, so trusting and accomodating put a lump in my throat and brought tears to my eyes. He's very special.

Praying for all four of you, as well as the doctors.