Friday, July 24, 2009

The End of a Good Day in Room 2NW20

It's near midnight and all in all Friday was a good day. Abbie, the day nurse, and Darlene, the night nurse, have been SUCH a welcome change from the previous day. They understand what patient care is all about. Lots of communication, lots of putting the patient's needs first, true angels of mercy. We appreciate them very much.

In true Lisa Marie fashion, as soon as she was able to this morning, she bathed and chunked the standard hospital issue gown for her much more stylish Dear Johnnie model. (See photo on Friday's Facebook page.) She also graciously accepted compliments on her lovely pedicure nail color. She then proceeded to walk from the room to the aquarium and back, then to the nurses station before returning to the room. Still the biggest problem has been the nausea and the shoulder pain. The walking tends to bring on a little nausea because during the walk the suction from the NG tube has to be disconnected. This means the stuff that is typically being evacuated continuously from her stomach is allowed to stay there when the NG tube is not sucking and it builds up and makes her nauseated. (If your're interested, you can also check out her Facebook page to see an example of the green slime that is sucked out.) We have since requested that the dosage of her anti-nausea medicine, Zofran, be increased from 4 mg to 8 mg. Her standard dosage during her chemo from MD Anderson was 8 mg and the higher dosage seemed to bring more relief as the day went on. Before the night was over, she took another walk to the aquarium, back to and around the nurses station, over to 2Northeast (we're in 2 Northwest), back past the elevators and then back to the room. She's one tough cancer patient. It looks like maybe the treadmill borrowed from Mr. Buck before the surgery paid some dividends on helping to prepare her for her recovery.

But of course, the true highlight of the day for her was getting to talk to the children for the first time since Monday. We do miss them so. Hayden and Trevor's bowling plans at the Palace Lanes on Bellaire were foiled today by a private party so they enjoyed an outing to the Children's Museum with Aunt Carol and Grandma Denise while Grandma Carole had the pleasure of staying home with Miss Juliette. The kids are looking forward to this weekend when they get to see their big cousin Colin as Uncle Michael and Aunt Amy make the trek from Tyler to Houston for perhaps a day at the Downtown Aquarium or Discovery Green.

As I finish typing this LM is already sleeping peacefully thanks to the Benadryl. We pray for a quiet, restful night and another good day tomorrow. We thank everyone for continued support through prayer. Also, the comments on the blog and Facebook mean a lot to us being so far away. She is back in action on the Ipod and today began reading the posts and all the comments and that is good medicine, too.

And to Jennifer from Thousand Oaks, California, I, as Lisa Marie's husband and father of three young children who love and need their mother, owe you a special thank you for sharing your story with my wife through the colon cancer internet group and helping lead us to Dr. Sugarbaker. We feel so blesssed and hopeful right now and are confident that this is what we needed to do in order to have the joy of watching our children grow up and the two of us growing old together. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.


Geri Archibald said...

You go girl! I am so glad to hear you told those ICU nurses what you think. If they have to put they're little conveniences and preferences first (Don't like family around while they assess their patient my eye!), they don't belong in nursing! I hate hearing bad nurse stories - and they ALWAYS label you the difficult patient if you stand up for yourself as a patient. Anyway, I'm glad you're with a better team, and tooling around the hospital. I'm so thrilled for you. Hang in there, I know you know we're all thinking of you and love you, Geri (RN, MSN, FNP)

Carrie said...

Sean - your stories have me swinging from tears to laughter and joy in a matter of seconds - and I love it. Thank you for being LM's rock. She sure did get lucky with you - who knew this would be the test the good Lord had in mind for you both. You have exceeded all expectations!
LM- you keep up the good work, girl. Your strength - physical, spiritual, and emotional - are unsurpassed and totally amazing! We love you both with all our hearts, and have you in all our prayers and thoughts. Keep on truckin' and get home soon. Love to you both! Carrie & Mike

Anonymous said...

Praying for you both during this time of recovery and healing.

Anonymous said...

Yes, thank you so much for keeping us posted. Your writing makes it seem like we are almost there with you all physically (we are all already there emotionally and spiritually). Did you guys get A+ in Expository and Creative from Mother that Hayden will be thrilled to see his cousin. I know they will all have a great time together. Thomas called the other night from Guatemala. Got to see the ruins at Tikal and was staying that night (on the way back to G. City where Juan's grandparents live) in a little place that you had to take a boat to get to. He is really loving this experience. Maybe has mentioned on Facebook.? Have a good day. Kim

dorothy said...

I agree about the tears to laughter. When Aunt Ginny & I tried to read Sean's comments to Grandma the 1st day, we each started crying and couldn't read it out loud. See you on Oprah when you write your book!
Love & prayers
Aunt Dorothy

cuz said...

LM, you look so great in your fancy nightgown, walking with your iv pole.Glad things are better in your new room. Keep us posted.Love and prayers

Anonymous said...

I think this would make a great book (best seller), you 2 are great, hugs to you both. you are in my prayers.

Stacey Tovino said...

Love this post! Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers and hope you have another wonderful day!

Stephanie said...

Yeah! I'm so glad to hear that the new nurses have been better and that Lisa Marie is getting up and around so much. That's fantastic! Thanks for keeping us updated.

Jennifer said...

You are so welcome..... I know that aquarium. I know what a big deal it is to take a walk after that surgery. I had a big problem in that ICU also and called the head of the dept later on my "vacation" at WHC to file a complaint.

I love Abby and Darlene too! Give Darlene a big hug from me. Tell her its the blond and her husband who spent Christmas '08 in WHC. Is she still wearing Jesus literally around her neck?

So happy I could be of any help at all. Remember you are the one who made this happen. This is no small feat. The Sugarman is in high demand.

We are all praying for you daily at our house.

Jennifer from Thousand Oaks CA

Mom of three also!

virginia said...

Lisa Marie,
I'm so grateful that you are being restored with such speed. Your spirit and perseverence are an inspiration. Keeping you on prayer lists, and those praying along with us are amazed at you. Sean, thanks for all the updates.
love to all,

Anonymous said...

This post made me cry. Sean, I know that a big part of Lisa Marie's recovery will come from your love and devotion to her. It pours off the pages and your words.

I will continue to pray for you and your family. God Bless you.