Update Page for David Hanson - April 2013
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4/3/13 (Rachel Hanson) I'm so proud of my husband for how hard he's working! He has moved up FIM (Functional Independence Measurement) scores this last week, which is what insurance companies like. Today, with much coaxing and cheering from the PT, her student, me and another patient's dad, he was able to propel himself down the hallway with his right leg in his wheelchair, keeping his head up the whole time for 50 feet!
We are still in limbo about where David is going after the hospital and when. I guess the timing and place are in the Lord's hands but I wish I could plan a little bit more since baby is due in less than 2-1/2 weeks. I've been thinking a lot about the Lord's timing lately in connection with a baby being born. It amazes me how the body is designed to calculate different hormones at different times to give birth to a new life in a set amount of time. So with everything else, we patiently wait for that appointed time when all pieces are in place to perfectly orchestrate God's will. "He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also he has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end...I know that whatever God does, it shall be forever. Nothing can be added to it. And nothing taken from it. God does it, that men should fear before Him." Ecclesiastes 3:11,14
On Monday, I was pushing him out of the room and he realized the bathroom door was open and we wouldn't fit through the space so he swung his right arm out and closed it for us. :) Today, he surprised me again. We were both napping in his bed and after awhile, I felt tapping on my arm. He'd reached across his body and was patting my arm and twinkling his big blue eyes at me, like, wake up you big sleepy head. :P He also remembered what chapter of Romans we were in tonight, which surprised me because it had been a few nights since we got the chance to read. He was also able to initiate and communicate that he needed to go to the bathroom without anyone asking.
The recreational therapist wants to take David on an outing on Friday! :) it's been almost 4 months since David's been out of the hospital so it's exciting! Also, we're hoping to do a "trial run" of visiting me and baby in the hospital (when that time comes) on Saturday and have him come with me to tour the labor and delivery unit. This is a big trip because the hospital is 1 hour away.
He is still getting fatigued quickly with eating applesauce but at least he isn't coughing or choking at all. We may get cleared to give "pleasure feedings" soon though...which I've been sneaking already. :-/ whoops.
God is good. We have so much to be thankful for every day. Sometimes it's just a heartbeat and breathing, but that's a miracle too.
4/6/13 (Rachel Hanson) David still has good days and bad days just like the rest of us. He was super tired Thursday and Friday, especially in the morning so didn't participate well in therapy. Then when I had a chance to talk it through with the doctors, I found out nursing was getting him up to go to the bathroom at 5:30am because it was "convenient" and they wanted to get it out of the way before therapy at TEN am. Who does that to a patient that's already struggling with alertness?? I think I got that changed and this morning, he seemed to be much more alert. Huh, what a concept.
David got to go on two outings this week! Yesterday, we went to the mall. I thought it would do a number on him with so much stimulation going on around him, but he insisted he wanted to go to the mall instead of the park. I guess he had a purchase in mind and he rolled out of the mall a smiling owner of a flashy lime green sport shirt. :)
Today, we drove an hour away to tour the L & D unit at the hospital I'll be delivering at. It was a gorgeous drive since it's spring here in CA so all the hills and trees are green or blooming color. I'm glad David got to get out and see something other than white walls! David did great and was awake for the majority of the time. I think the van that transported us had no shocks (despite the driver's attempt to reassure me he'd just had them worked on...) so David got a real nice bumpy ride to practice his head control! :-P He passed the test to be able to come see me and baby at the hospital! :) It was strange going back to the same hospital that David was life flighted to and nearly lost his life at, but good at the same time knowing that the many tears I had shed there would be turned into joy. :) I hope when Brahm's lullaby is played, it will bring a smile to someone's face in neuro ICU just as it did to me when I was fighting despair.
Tonight, he got bored and wanted to practice his motoring around so we went out in the hall and he pedaled his wheelchair with both feet (with a little assistance on the left). He must have felt he got gypped of therapy today (he only had 1 hour instead of 3) because he wanted to practice his speech and holding his head up too.
4/13/14 (Rachel Hanson) David's long term memory amazes me. I found out today he remembers his email password which he hasn't used in over 8 months!
My sister asked him.if we could bring anything for him tomorrow. His response: "food". When asked further what kind of food... "Steak". :) poor guy hasn't really had food in months and is hankering for a steak!!
There's not much news. He was able to eat 4oz of applesauce in speech therapy today. He likes to draw things quite a bit. A couple nights ago, he wanted to draw "grandma swinging". He got the swing drawn and then fell asleep. Last week he wanted to draw a soldier. He dominates in all games I have him play: mancala, Uno, Rook...just needs help in the physical part. He has difficulty sequencing movements like reaching out in front of him or throwing a ball. He can do all the individual movements but putting it all together in a complex pattern is hard. We've been working a lot on that with his arms and increasing his strength in his legs for wheelchair mobility. I find a lot of joy and satisfaction in helping him and am kind of sad the quantity of time spent with him will be decreased when our baby is born. Thoughts of him not being able to be home yet especially when baby comes is hard. Even though David can't talk, he is such a great support to me when he sees my struggles. His eyes fill with concern and love and sometimes that look and the knowledge that he prays for me are what buoy me up and make it possible to make it another day.
4/15/13 (Rachel Hanson) God does answer prayers, even the secrets of our hearts poured out before Him in our closets.
I think David caught another cold but he seems to be better today. Colds are kind of no big deal to people that haven't had a brain injury, but with David, it makes him real sluggish and his spasticity and tone get worse which makes it harder for him to do everything he struggles to do already. The doctor wants to do another round of Botox injections to help with his tone before he leaves the hospital. It looks like the insurance company is going to have mercy on me and not move David to another facility right when I will probably be in the delivery room. :) The Lord is good!
Today, David got to be in a regular wheelchair for an hour to practice his head control. It still needs work but he looked so much more comfortable sitting more upright. He held his head up for the better part of the 15 minutes he was in the standing frame, which is much better than last week, to the delight of his primary PT who thinks he just missed her when she was on vacation last week... :P
Tonight, David drew a wheelchair and wrote fairly legibly what it was for me on the same piece of paper. His handwriting and drawings are improving, although still hard to decipher a lot of the time. Later, I asked what he was thinking about and he wrote, "Jesus paid it all." I asked if he wanted to sing the song and he said yes so we sat at the piano and I sang and played the song and some others too. We read I Cor. 3 tonight. After we read it, his brow kind of furrowed like he was deep in thought. I asked him what he was thinking and he spelled out, "He loves me." (He, referring to Jesus) Yes, yes He does!
Jocelyn Elise Hanson was born on 4/20/13 at 11:23AM weighing 7 lbs 14 oounces and 20.5 inches.
She is a beautiful redhead and both her and mom are doing great!
4/28/13 (Rachel Hanson) We are now the happy parents of a beautiful baby girl! I keep looking at her in wonder that she's OURS...I'm finally holding my own baby! I think David thinks the same thing. He just can't stop looking at her. :) it's humbling that God has entrusted us with this little life. She's so perfect.
Needless to say, our lives have been changed forever since last Saturday. I'm still adjusting to trying to keep up with a new baby and David too. David is finally moving out of the hospital on Monday!!! I can hardly believe this day is actually coming, so soon! I'm being made flexible...very flexible, to adjust to change. I just got a little settled back into life back at our apartment. Now I'm back at my aunt's this weekend, moving out of my aunt's this weekend, moving David to Fairfax on Monday, and finding Jocelyn and I a place near David someday soon.
It's so amazing to see David with Jocelyn. He just adores her and she adores him. :) if she's fussy, if I lay her on David's chest, she quiets right down and just looks up at him like he's the best person in the world. He keeps "saying" over and over how much he loves his "little deers" (his nickname for me...now Jocelyn is included to make it plural because he said "exactly little deer" when he first saw her). :)
I've been out of the loop on David's therapy this week. His parents are doing a great job covering for me. He did get cleared for "pleasure feeds" of purée consistency so I brought him pistachio pudding today. He got a brand new fancy wheelchair yesterday to keep. He picked out the brilliant blue color to replace the hot pink rental wheelchair that he got teased about incessantly. :P
Pray for David adjusting to the new place. Pray for me to find something temporary but suitable to live in for a couple months so I can be close to David. We both need patience. We are about at the end of our rope for wanting to be home. Especially with the baby, we just want to be a family together at home with some privacy.
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