Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Oreo and familiarity

We continue to see Jake growing and getting stronger. Mornings are spent with the therapists: speech, occupational, physical, etc. He is more and more awake and more and more able to speak to us. He is now going to be able to eat some soft solid foods - they tested him eating: ice then pudding then Oreo cookie - all in small careful bites - smooth easy chewing - all went down with a swig of water. He also got to enjoy his favorite drink today Arizona Green Tea.

A bit of a feeding frenzy going on around hear - a feast - in small bites.

They will be lowering the amount of food through the feeding tube (brown goop) and moving toward some soft food.

There are moments that I stop - and consider what has happened and feel shocked - disbelief of where we have been and where we are now. Though we have a better idea of what is happening each day and seeing improvement there is still the unknown - maybe better yet the unfamiliar. Knowing what is going to happen or at least the idea of what might happen - while we think otherwise - does not necessarily give comfort. We are talking about going home - what we will need to do to make that work - what room - what kind of bed - ramps - handles - etc. We are going to need to learn to give him medications through the pic line, change his dressings - while we will be told and shown and the unknown will be known - it will all be so unfamiliar. Maybe that is why change seems to be so hard - familiarity is so comforting. Entering the Burn Unit was so unfamiliar - leaving there and coming here to the Pediatric ICU at Kaiser, unfamiliar.

Familiarity seems to give comfort but it can also be a false sense of comfort. We need to move forward and enter into the unfamiliar in order to find rest and healing - in order to move forward. We put up such a fight against unfamiliarity - we do not like discomfort. Jake is pretty comfortable here right now - lots of people waiting on him - helping him out. This is no place to stay though. This week he may move out of the familiarity of this room out of ICU into a regular room. He is no longer an "intensive care patient." Praise God. Though it will be unfamiliar it will move us forward.

Patients heal better in familiar surroundings - they encourage pictures - deeply desire to get us home. Not only because it frees up their bed but because evidence shows that patience heal faster at home - in what is familiar. But we cannot stay there - we need to move through that to grow to change to improve. Familiarity does not always mean safety or thriving. In the midst of familiarity we also need to push beyond and be uncomfortable. Jacob needs to push his vocal chords in the right way - work on using his hands and arms - stretching them - writing - he needs to push walking - not overdoing it but just beyond what is comfortable and challenge himself to reach a little farther.

For whatever it is worth those are my thoughts today from Jacob's bedside. As I watch my son in thankfulness - in the miraculous healing - in the hope of returning. Jake longs to return to the familiar - the normal - but in my heart he is beyond normal - he is a superhero.

Time to read to Jake a bit - we started a novel.

Peace and hope,

Tom (Dad)


The Griffin Family said...

So encouraging to hear about Jacob's progress and especially that he gets to eat! What better way to start the day than with pudding and oreo cookie!?

Todd said...

Way to go Jacob!
Stay tough, No victim stuff, You are a survivor!!
How each of us lived through a high voltage shock is a gift. Press on, fight the Good fight.

Anonymous said...

haha, oh i have good memories with jacob and arizona green tea. so great to visit with him monday, happy birthday tom, and love peace and rest to all of you!

Anonymous said...

Tom, Happy late birthday!! Thats my moms bithday too.So happy to hear Jacob is doing so well. What a great kid. (young man) you guys must be able to let a out a little sigh every once in awhile now. I know I am. tell Debbie HI! miss her
love and joy kamala

Heidi said...

Thanks for taking time to share your journey. We continue to pray for Jacob and all of you. Enjoy the novel and the time with your son! :)
Heidi Mackie :)

Anonymous said...

Hi you don't know me but I have been following along and the progress is amazing. I wish I had thought of this before but has anyone mentioned to you about the Shriners burn hospital in Sacramento? They offer free care to children under 18 and work with world renowed doctors. They may be some place to look at for his other surgeries.

Anonymous said...

I am so happy to hear that Jacob is awake! We are praying for you guys! I am Renee's cousin.
I have had a pic line before. My only advice is to make sure it is flushed regularly (be sure to ask how often.) When I was in the hospital the nurses didn't and clots formed (after a few days) around the end of it.

Victoria said...

Rec'd email request to post from Carol:

Hi Tom,
God is ever faithful!!! It is soooo exciting to hear all that God is doing in Jacob. It's so very encouraging to see how God is healing and restoring Jacob. It's time to dance and celebrate for all that God has done!!!!! There will be more to be celebrated later for He is faithful!

Blessings, Carol