Today is such a whirlwind that my head is still spinning and I don't know where to start.
I arrived at the hospital for the morning visit and things were the same. He was semi-awake and I cleaned his eyes, got him some water to sponge into his mouth of course and had a regular visit. He was tired and was going to nap until I came back this afternoon.
When I got there in the afternoon the doctors were doing rounds so I asked if I could stay until the doctors came around to do rounds because I had so many questions. Right after I got there the occupational and physical therapists came. They wanted to do a swallow test on him and then talk about getting him to sit up at the side of the bed. For the swallow test they gave him some cranberry juice and because it is red they can see if it goes down the wrong pipe. He passed! He was so happy to have the juice he decided to give sitting up at the side of the bed a try. He sat there for about 10 minutes until he laid back down. It was an amazing site to see him sitting there with a cup of juice.
The doctors came finally and we found out that the wires on his jaw will be cut tomorrow. Great news. After they cut the wires they will try to get him eating some food. Tomorrow he will be transferred out of the SICU and into a room which is great because I will finally be able to stay with him all day. Now for the best news, since he was finally off the ventilator and only doing the "aerosol" they have decided to start him on "trach trials". That is where they disconnect all the tubes and put a cap over his trach so he breathes through his nose and mouth instead of the trach. They will keep it capped as long as he keeps his oxygen level over 91.
They let me stay after the doctors left, so today I was able to stay from 2pm until 6pm. It was fantastic! You will remember from above that he can now swallow, so he is finally able to drink water through a straw. About a half hour after they had capped the trach he signaled me that he wanted more to drink. When I walked up to him with the water I heard the most wonderful thing ever.....he talked to me. "Juice" is what he said. He wanted some juice instead of water. Since the trach is capped he can talk, he has to talk through his teeth of course because his jaw is wired shut, but he can talk. I almost fainted I was so overwhelmed, as was he. It was an emotional moment for both of us. It took him a while to get the hang of it, but before I knew it we were having conversations. I have to lean close to hear him as he is pretty quiet as you can imagine, but I cherished every word.
My head is still spinning from everything that has happened today. Once he talked to me I don't think I stopped smiling for an hour. We started talking about all the different sign language things I could not get, but he said I got most of them eventually. I had to leave at 6 because they were going to do shift change for the nurses, but I said good bye and told him I would be back in a couple hours.
When I got back for the night visit he was watching the Laker game. It was great to hear him cheer them on "Come on Pau" "Right on Kobe". It felt just like being at home. He was really tired I am sure from all the excitement today, so when I had to leave cause my time allowed was up, he had me turn off the TV so he could go to sleep. You know he must be tired to turn off the Lakers. He asked me what time I would be back in the morning and told me to drive safe. I kissed him on the cheek and said goodnight and told him I loved him, and I heard him say "I Love You Too", something just 18 days ago I was scared I would never here. Scared I would never have a moment like this with him.
Now I know we have a long road to go to get him back to normal, and I am not discrediting that, trust me when I say it weighs on my mind constantly, but we are getting there day by day, one day at a time.