Monday, March 21, 2005

Out of ICU, yippee!

Hi to all – here’s the latest update from the 4th floor of the hospital, which is NOT the ICU – yeah for progress! Blaine actually got out of ICU on Friday afternoon and moved to a room on a post-op floor. Private room; less noise and interruptions; much better! How do they expect people to actually RECOVER in ICU Recovery, when the nurses and machines and lights are so intrusive??? Beeping, beeping, the constant beeping …. But I digress…..

Steadily and surely he’s showing signs of improvement. Still on iv meds and antibiotics, and still has the feeding tube in place, but we’re hoping that comes out tomorrow. He’s not particularly enjoying **that** particular part of the process, to be honest. In fact, when the doctors told him tonight that once he upped his calorie intake orally they would consider removing the ng tube and trumpet, he practically sprinted to the nourishment room and downed two Ensures. Well, sprinted as much as you can with a soft cast on your leg and dragging the iv pole behind you. Speaking of the cast, they cut it off today for the first time since surgery and can I just say that Blaine’s body is the most amazing example of robbing Peter to pay Paul I have ever seen?

They took the bone and tissue they needed to put in his head from his lower leg. That incision is stapled shut, ankle to knee. Since he didn’t have enough fat down there to close the incision, (WHATever!) They sliced a hunk of skin off his thigh to close the incision …. More gauze and staples over the sliced area. Then, to get the blood vessels from his leg into his neck to make sure the tissue transfer in his sinus cavity was a success, they made a six (or so) inch incision across his throat. I tell you what, the poor guy’s going to look like a road map before it’s all done. Or a mugging victim, I’m not sure which.

I know he’s feeling better because frankly, he’s getting a little grumpy. After a particularly enjoyable round of “Mr. Escoe, you need to get up and move more/Mr. Escoe, please don’t get out of bed until we tell you” with his nurse yesterday, he actually called her a bad name (under his breath and behind her back; don’t worry, he hasn’t lost ALL his manners yet!) and he went toe-to-toe with both nurses and the doctor about why black coffee wasn’t included on his clear liquids list. Pretty good signs, don’t you think?

I was lucky enough to escape his foul mood, er, the hospital environment yesterday for a few hours and went to a neat outdoor mall and had lunch with a new friend (I hope I’m not being too forward by calling her a new friend!) named Mandy. We had met online through this site and decided to both take the chance that the other person wasn’t a crazy-person-stalker and meet for lunch, ha! Naturally, I had 911 on Speed Dial and she had family on the other line ….. just in case ….. but it wasn’t necessary and I had a really nice visit. Thank you, Mandy! And even though I don’t normally watch basketball, I will watch the next Seahawks game closely to see you perform with the Sea-Gals. (And re-live my glory days of high school pom pom squad with the awesome routine to Pac-Man, like I told you, ha!) (Goodness, I am old or what???) (don't answer that)

Speaking of meeting people through the site, I want to let all of you know that Caringbridge is in the process of implementing a new policy regarding links to other sites. Let me first state that I appreciate SO much the cheap therapy that CB has afforded me throughout this ordeal, and I love the way I am able to jump from one site to another, to another, through the links on everyone’s pages. The support and encouragement that our family has received (and that I would like to think I’ve been able to offer other families by visiting other sites and signing guestbooks) is truly immeasurable. I *love* to read a guestbook entry on Kendrie's site that starts with, "you don't know me, but I found your site through so-and-so's"...... I’ve donated to CB a few times, but I know it doesn’t come close. However, apparently there have been concerns regarding privacy issues and CB is making all the authors take all the links to other sites off their pages. Not sure yet if that means we won’t be able to include them in journal entries or guestbook signatures or not, but they definitely have to be removed off the sites.

So, I would recommend one thing and ask one other: if you have favorite cb sites, I recommend you bookmark them, as you might not be able to find them again, if you rely on jumping from site to site. I believe the deadline for the removals is by the end of this week, so get going and make sure you know the addresses to the sites you frequent. Second, I would ask that you e-mail Customer Service at (look for "Contact Us" at the top of this page) and let them know how fabulous their service is and how much you enjoy linking from site to site. As I understand it, they are working on some sort of master directory and I’m hopeful that if they hear from the many people who utilize their service, this master directory will come out promptly.

For a much more detailed, eloquent description of this situation, please visit Julianna Banana's page (shoot, my cheat sheet for putting links on my page is sitting at home, post-noted to my computer desk!) at Her dad Terry really sums it up well AND gives us all permission to link back to him, so we can all do whatever is necessary to keep the links available. If you do indeed feel strongly about the links (as I do) please e-mail Caringbridge respectfully (as I did) and let them know!

Well, I’ll sign off for now. I hope everyone’s week is off to a good start. Mom is getting more than she bargained for, I fear, as both Kendrie AND the dog threw up in the living room yesterday. Ick. I’m so glad she was there and not me. Plus she had to clean dog poop off their shoes from when they went out in the backyard to play. (Cleaning up dog poop is Blaine’s arena so it goes without saying that by now we are cultivating a small manure farm in the backyard.) Who knew being a grandma was such a hands-on affair???? At this rate I might have to refund all her quarters just to get her to come visit again someday.

Love, Kristie

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