Sunday, February 27, 2011

February Update

As you may have noticed, what was once weekly reports have now become monthly updates.  I think this is a good sign that life DOES go on after a major upheaval and the boat stabilizes.  Here's the latest.

Friday we finally drove the van home from Brownsville.  It has been nearly a month since we first signed the sale documents.  Each step has taught us patient waiting and I will not bore you with the details.  Even at this point we must be patient.  Why?  Well, neither Lynn nor I remembered that we needed to call our insurance company so it sat here all weekend until we could call and get it on our policy on Monday.  We know that policies cover the driving of new vehicles but, in our case, there is a huge question of when we actually took ownership.  Just to be safe, then, we decided to wait.  Lynn is biting at the bit though.  In my next monthly blog, I'll let you know how driving from a wheelchair is going.  This van has a Braun lift so Lynn will be lifted up into the vehicle in his chair and will move right into the driving area, lock his chair in, and drive with the hand controls from Coachcraft.  If I drive, I move the passenger seat to the driver's side, and Lynn locks his chair into the emptied space.  Cool - huh?!!!!!  I can't believe how blessed we are to make this happen for Lynn.

Medically, I have good news and bad news.  On the positive side Lynn is taking the right amount of muscle spasm medicine right now to keep the involuntary spasms to a minimum.  This is such a relief at night as I can position his legs when he turns over so much better.  God bless Baclofen!

The bad news is that the increased medication has raised havoc with his bowel program.  We're not sure why but this has been discouraging to Lynn because he is wondering AGAIN how he can trust doing anything in the evening.   We are hoping as his body adjusts to the meds, we can get his bowels trained again.  Please pray for this.  It is a HUGE part of being paralyzed.

Lastly, Lynn has had no signs of movement. We will keep asking for God to give us a miracle.

Friday, February 4, 2011

January update

There are a few who follow this little journal so I will catch you up on the latest.  The flu really was hard to bounce back from for all of us.  The silver lining though was that as a result of the flu,  Lynn's spasm medicine was upped and the increased dose realy helped him with some of the problems he was having.  Unfortunately, not all.  We think when the weather gets cold his spasms increase greatly.  There are many times that he wishes his spinal cord had been severed as a bruised one brings with it so many side issues.

He is using the standing frame about 30 minutes per day.  Unclear yet if it is bringing the benefits we hoped.  I think this is going to be one of those things that keeps him healthier in the long run.

The BIG news, however, is that we have purchased a van.  In another post I will tell you the story of why we settled on this one.  We don't have it yet.  It is being worked on to meet Lynn's needs but he is just a short time away from some independence. 

Admist all this I have been confronting a health issue.  I have had pain in my left chest wall for quite some time.  At Christmas it had gotten worse so I finally decided to get aggresive and find out once and for all if I had heart disease.  After several doctor's appts., a visit with a cardiologist, and a nuclear infusion stress test, the verdict is that I do NOT have blocked arteries.  More likely I am dealing with what is called chest wall pain.  This is a huge relief to both Lynn and I.

On one last personal note - Joe got his first apt. last Sunday.  He was going to move out this summer but when this happened to Lynn, he stayed to help us through the first months.  We will miss him greatly but it is time for him to be on his own.

I hope this brings you some what up to date.  On Sunday I'll tell you more about the van.

Monday, January 10, 2011

A Wretched Weekend

The new year has not started out well.  I knew something was up Friday when my cell phone vibrated during my first period class.  This means "emergency" at our house. It was Lynn and he was in the throes of the stomach flu.  The next 48 hours were to say the least pretty challenging.  We were unprepared with supplies and what something like the flu would mean to a paraplegic.  Use your inmagination - that is all I am willing to say.  On top of the usual flu stuff, Lynn's spasms went out of control.  It may have been the fever or the virus itself but every time his body relaxed and tried to go to sleep a violent spasm ran through his whole lower body.  We called both our primary and Lynn's paraplegic doctor on Saturday because I just didn't know how to help.  Thank goodness we did because they were very helpful; things got under control; and Sunday night around 2:00 AM, it was my turn. -In answer to intensive prayer- Lynn finally slept so I could concentrate on my symptoms. 

Today Monday was Joe's turn.

Like I said, a wretched weekend it was!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Happy New Year!!!

I won't lie.  It is nice to see 2010 behind us.  On Monday next week will be the sixth month anniversary of Lynn's injury.  We both feel at times that it seems like a dream.  Did that morning really happen?????!!!!!!!

Here's an update on a couple of items:

The wheelchair money issue has been resolved and we were told everything is paid for.

Yes, insurance DID approve the standing frame and Lynn might have it by next week.

We haven't been very aggressive about looking for a van during the holidays because we wanted to enjoy having Becky home and my being off school.  More to come on that.

Lynn decided to back off one of his medications slightly to see if he would have more energy and he DID find he was not as tired in the afternoons.  However, the trade off has been unacceptable with very painful muscle spasming happening as a result.  Yesterday it just got to be too much and he restored the noon dose.
We need to see the doctor about this to see if there are altenatives that do not have such a sedative effect.

He has also getting good results in controlling the tyranny of the bathroom.  We did some research online and instituted a bowel management program that has freed him from the toilet except in the mornings.  This has made a HUGE difference in the quality of his life.

Finally, Lynn is moving out socially.  We saw my family Christmas Day in Portland which was so wonderful.  Today we took Becky to the airport together and, after seeing her off, ate a small lunch before coming home.  Lynn used a public restroom for the first time.  We both were thrilled doing something so normal.

Little victories but important ones, I think.  As Bill Murray told Richard Dreyfuss, "Baby steps really work!"