Sunday, August 14, 2011


OK.  Let's get you all caught up.

Dan was moved to the ICU around 8 pm on Thursday night.  We waited for them to set him up and then went in with him - but only 2 at a time.  Seeing him in that big bed with all those machines around him was surreal. Most weren't hooked up but they were ready.   As ICU patients go, he was definitely on the low end of scary.  The guy next to us had been in a motorcycle accident and was barely alive.  We were counting our blessings and realizing that, although not out of the woods yet in terms of the brain injury, we were extremely lucky.  He was not on life support, breathing room air (as opposed to ventilator), not hooked up to beeping, buzzing machines, etc.

His cognition was shaky.  Didn't know where he was, what year it was, when asked who was the President, he said, "Bozo the Clown."  Attempt to make us laugh?  Political commentary?  Probably both.  He also told the ER staff that his wife was "Bozo the Clown," so somehow Bozo was there with him on several fronts.

He has always used humor to lessen our worries and to protect us from going to the dark place in difficult situations.  So I felt a glimmer of hope seeing that that was intact.  I knew he was in there trying to surface and trying to calm us at the same time.

To make a long story short, Julia and I had gone home to sleep but were back on the ICU by 6 a.m. Friday morning, hoping to catch the neurological team on their morning rounds.   They showed up around 8.  Still watching brain bleed...  He was in the ICU all day.  The nurses were busy with so many other, sicker patients.  It was frustrating because he was really agitated and wanted to get up and get out of there and wanted his catheter out and ended up dislodging one of his IV's and bleeding all over the place.  I ended up rifling through drawers finding tape and reattaching the bandage on his arm.   Do I get a discount for that?

By mid-afternoon we were told that they were releasing him to the acute trauma floor which they did just as his dinner tray was served.  He had a swallow test early in the day and because of his difficulty, he was served minced turkey and mashed potatoes which he had just started eating when they came to move him.

We waved a fond farewell to ICU and headed down to our new home.

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