Tuesday, August 25, 2009

In Which Disaster is Averted

Please pardon my gibbering panic of yesterday. I'm feeling much, much better today.

A big part of the reason why is that the hospital where Jer is to transfer for his big surgeries decided that they want him to be inpatient. So tomorrow they'll transport him there. There will be no going home on Saturday.

Thank God. HUGE weight off my mind. We have some time to plan now for when Jer comes home, which will probably not be for a while.

So I've done some homework and determined that there's no possible way to convert a Nissan Xterra to be wheelchair accessible, as the head clearance is too low. So we're going to need to purchase a vehicle. By the time Jer is out of a wheelchair (Three months? Six months? Who knows?) we'll probably need the wheelchair access for Connor, who is rapidly gaining weight and will soon be too large for me to haul up into a car seat. We're not sure what our insurance will cover yet, or which person (Jer or Connor) it would be best to attempt to order it through, but we're working on it. So now I need to figure out if it would be better to purchase an already converted van or if we should buy a van and have it converted. Since it's no longer a OH MY GOD WE MUST HAVE IT NOW situation, we can afford to be a little more choosy. So those of you with people in your household who are in wheelchairs-- I've love your opinion on the best vehicle for conversion. What's worked for you?

Jer had the skin graft done on his left calf today-- they pulled a big stretch of skin of his thigh for what's called a "split skin graft." As a result a huge portion of the skin on his thigh now feels like it's on fire. Since they pull off the top layers of skin and leave the bottom, it's kind of like having an open blister about six inches wide and twelve inches long. This does not sound particularly fun to me. At any rate, they said his calf looked really good (it did-- I saw the pictures) and hopefully his thigh should be totally healed in about six weeks and his calf should be totally healed in two to four months.

The new hospital we're going to has decided to repair Jer's heels in a series of surgeries. They plan to go in this weekend and perform the first surgery-- they'll be implanting screws into Jer's talus (the bone that is part of the ankle joint and is next to the calcaneus, or heel bone) and using them to push out one of the larger fragments of each of his heels to give the doctors some more room to work with in later surgeries. Otherwise the soft tissue in the heels could start to contract around the bones and prevent them from being able to reshape things. At least, that's what I think the explanation was. I'll know more when we see the docs up at the new hospital. We're not sure what the game plan is after the first surgery. At any rate, it will involve multiple trips to the operating room. They also put in a PICC line today so that they don't have to continue poking Jer three or four times a day. After two weeks of that he's starting to run out of good veins.

Connor is doing all right-- he doesn't like the change in his routine at all and has started waking up with nightmares, so he spent last night in my bed. The new hospital will be yet another change for him, and the changes have come fast and furious in the last couple of weeks, so I expect a bit of fallout from that. Otherwise he's totally thrilled to see his Daddy, and gets very agitated if we go to Jer's hospital room and Jer isn't there (usually because he's in surgery). I'm not really surprised that the kiddo's having a rough time with this; quite frankly I'm pretty amazed we haven't seen more big meltdowns at this point. Hopefully this new change in routine won't push him over his limit.

As for me; I feel much, much better now that I know I don't have to completely reorganize our house and lives, find a new vehicle, etc. in the next four days. Thanks so much for all of your kind suggestions and words of encouragement! The mouse have quit gibbering and gone back to quietly running on their little wheels.



Anonymous said...


Wherever HE Leads We'll Go said...

That is such good news about Jeremy. So sorry to hear that Connor is having a rough time. I can only imagine how overwhelming all of this is for him. Hopefully things will settle down a bit when Jeremy moves to the new hospital. Maybe Connor will be able to get used to the new different routine.

Julia O'C said...

Answered prayer.

Odd question, but do you and Jeremy use USAA (United Services Automobile Association) for your car insurance? If so, they have a car buying service for their members that would navigate this car issue for you. We just used their car buying service and had an excellent experience. Saved a LOT of money and they even delivered the car to us.

I'm glad that some of the pressure has eased up on you.

Anonymous said...

ditto Julia O'C's comment.

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