A day has arrived that seemed impossible exactly three months ago today.
Today, Dan was transferred to Health South, an acute rehabilitation hospital in northeast Albuquerque.
It was in many ways very sad for us, because the people at Specialty Hospital had become very dear to us. Many, many people fought for him (especially when he was unaware) while he was there, and took such good care of him. Whenever there were problems (and there will always be problems when you are in a facility staffed by human beings for such a long time), they were addressed immediately and vigorously.
For the first time in four months, he no longer has a PICC line, and he is wearing regular clothes. These are enormous milestones for him. I believe he will soon have his gastric tube removed, because he is enthusiastically eating all kinds of foods.
The nurses at Specialty (which is a long term acute care hospital with only limited physical therapy) warned Dan that he will be very tired every day because this begins a new phase of his life in which his body will be challenged so that he can return to his everyday activities, such as feeding himself, walking, dressing himself.
Health South hospital encourages visits from friends and family, but they told him that he will be in therapy until about 3 every afternoon. For that reason, there’s no need for people to come and relieve me for “writing time” for me as I will stay home each day and write and come to see him in the late afternoon or in the evening. I could never, ever have been able to get as much writing done as I have, without so many people’s sacrifices of their time.
I am 25 days away from the deadline on my book and will be working hard. However, I have learned some important spiritual lessons I’d like to share with you in coming days. The head nurse at Specialty took me aside and said I should write a book on how to be a patient advocate; and since so many people have told me that they are reading the blog and are caregivers themselves, I hope also to begin blogging to share about what I’ve learned.
So, in your prayers tonight praise and thank the God of all comfort, who has brought Dan this far and blessed him with this new opportunity for health and healing.
I am so grateful to you all as well for your support and help.