Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Tuesday July 7 & Wednesday July 8

I want to first give my deepest apologies for not getting the blog updated last night! I know that many people rely on this as a way to get information on how John is doing and although I try really hard to stay on top of it, I was too tired to type last night (no excuses from now on I promise)! Next time I will at least let you know that so as not to cause worry or alarm.

Over the past few days, John has been being evaluated by a variety of rehabilitation facilities. When you read this blog I have used rehab to describe where John currently is, however that is not technically accurate. While they do offer rehabilitation, it is minimal and we knew almost from the beginning that if John improved dramatically we would be in for another move. So, it is actually a wonderful thing that he is being moved yet again! Triumph has been great while he has been there but John has progressed past the point of needing acute medical care. His heart and lungs are strong and his kidneys are almost back to where they need to be. While he has not taken his first post heart attack steps yet, we are confident that given a physical therapy regime which is challenging and demanding, John will thrive in the short and long term. As we all know, John has been extremely active throughout his life and it only seems appropriate to give him the ability to have the most state of the art equipment and professionals available. This process is both nerve-racking and stressful because all of the planets have to align in order for him to go to the best facility, that takes his insurance, and which we felt was going to fit his personality. Soooo, drum roll please....the winner is The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research or TIRR. We have heard nothing but the most fantastic things about this facility and are really excited that he gets to go there for the next step of his journey. I must say that the process must be like waiting for your child to get accepted to college and we did a little high fivers when we got the news that it was going to happen. It was sort of like we won some sort of prize! He will be in one of the top 4 rehabilitation facilities in the nation and their neurological and physiological expertise is second to none.

This move will take place in the next day or two and from a logistical standpoint, lots of things will be changing. First of all, John's mother will be relocating to the medical center area. This will allow her to be close to John and more easily navigate the area. She is a good driver but making her way from the Tomball area all the way to the med center each day would be daunting for her and frankly for any of us! Holly will also be staying near the medical center which will allow her to be with John as much as possible. She will be returning to work next week and so being close to the hospital will allow her to get over to see him frequently. Honeygal is going to stay in Houston at Holly's house for the time being and Paulette's Boston Terrier will be joining her brood. Honeygal is kind of like the Angelina Jolie of Boston Terriers and if you lost count, that's four dogs (Harley, Hayley, Gracie and now Chanel)! She will definitely have her hands full but has graciously said she will take care of them. Everyone should have an Aunt Honeygal and we are so lucky we have ours.

Each day at TIRR, John will be undergoing multiple hours of physical therapy including aquatics, and a gymnasium with all of the usual and some unusual equipment. He will have a set schedule which rotates each day so that he might have one type of therapy in the morning one day and then it will change to the afternoon the next. This will help with any cycles of rest which might have arisen and will give him the opportunity to be at his best and receive the most help at each therapeutic session. While we don't know know quite how this whole schedule thing will work we are excited that John will be doing what he loves most, being active and interacting with other people.

An explanation:
Holly asked me to mention that we are still in no visitors mode. I want to say that while we simply cannot thank everyone enough for their well-wishes there is a method to our madness in keeping visitors to a minimum and I feel obligated to explain why it must be this way. John has made many advancements in talking, movement, etc. His brain is healing but we have been told by the best doctors that over stimulation can confuse him and might even complicate his healing process. TIRR ascribes to the same philosophy to the extent that John will be assigned only one therapist from each discipline and he will work with that person only. This allows he and the therapist to bond and become familiar with each persons role. They also ask that at least initially, visitors be kept to the bare minimum so as not to interrupt his therapeutic process. The ability to compartmentalize who each person is will be a challenge and having other people thrown into the mix would only make it harder for him. I hope this makes sense and that I'm not making it sound like we are unappreciative because I will never be able to express our gratitude enough. We are going to do everything possible to provide the best environment possible for John to receive the most benefit and your prayers and well-wishes from a distance helps so much with that. I still receive emails daily and make sure that Holly gets them too. I also plan to start providing some action shots of John at TIRR to further help you in feeling like you are there with him! I will continue to update the blog and if physicians change their minds about visitors I will post it here first but for now, thanks so much for your continued understanding.

1 comment:

  1. God bless you and Holly for keeping us up to date on John's progress. I have not had contact with John for many years but growing up down the street from him he instilled a toughness and appreciation for working hard. We played basketball everyday and even though he was 4 years older than me he didn't take it easy on me, which made me work that much harder to compete. His parents were compassionate and very giving to all that went over to their house on Timberwilde. When I heard the news of John it shocked me and really put things into perspective. The day he goes home i want to be their to shake his hand and give him a big hug. I pray for John's quick recovery and is in my families prayer's. Sean Connolly