Thursday, January 31, 2013

All The King's Horses (PT II)

Talen pushed the call button attached to his bed and the nurse buzzed back to ask if she could help him. Talen held the intercom up to his mouth and announced, "I need more morphine."

The nurse laughed and told Talen she was on her way.

Monday, in the afternoon after Talen came out of surgery, we started to see him returning to his normal personality. Somewhat. He was still a little irritable, and prone to demanding that select people leave his room, but he was starting to perk up again. Later that evening, while we were going to sleep, I heard him making the little beat-box noise he makes when he's happy and I started to think that things might be getting better.

That night the nurses were saying that if he could start weaning from morphine to lortab that we might be able to go home the next day.

The next morning I got up and walked the greenway to work. Lisa sent me pictures throughout the day. In a single day following his surgery, Talen was already getting out of bed and into a wheelchair. By lunchtime, he was rolling around the children's ward. I left work at 4:30PM when Lisa called to tell me that we were getting discharged. We ended up leaving the hospital around 7:30PM with a stack of pillows stuffed under Talen's immobilizer cast to keep his leg upright in the van.

Last Wednesday (1/ 23/13) we returned to the orthopedic surgeon's office at Levine's to follow up. At this point his leg seems to be healing fine. The doctor removed Talen's immobilizer case, but cautioned us that he won't be able to put any weight on his leg for at least another three weeks. We asked about returning to school, and the doctor said that the main concern is going to be getting him to the bathroom. If the school is able to make allowances for that he can return, but Talen pees a lot and Matthews Elementary seems to have a very limited capacity to provide resources.

We're not sure yet how this will affect Talen's mobility. All available information seems to indicate that extended periods of bed rest can trigger significant deterioration, but so far he still seems to have a lot of energy. I'm not sure if it's just my perception, but he certainly seems smaller, more frail than he did before the fall, much the same way he seemed to after his bout with pneumonia last year.

A part of me wanted to react like the world was coming down around me, and there was a few days there that I walked around with a black cloud looming over me. At some point, though, I realized that maybe I have some right to feel despondent, but in the meantime Talen was the one who had to cope with his leg snapping from slipping on a pair of pants in the hall. Yet here he was laughing and making poop jokes while I sat around like a teenager with a Cure record.

The Thursday after we got home from the hospital, I got home from work a little late and Talen was the only one still up. He asked me to play video games with him for a little bit before bed, so I sat on the floor and listened while he chirped about this thing or that. I leaned back and looked at him, happy as a little clam, and I told him, "Buddy, I think you're pretty awesome. I don't know if anyone else could have their leg hurt as badly as you did just a few days ago and still be as happy and upbeat as you are right now."

Talen looked thoughtful for a second and then he told me, "My leg wasn't hurt that bad..."

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

All the King's Horses (PT I)

You reach this state of mind when you're looking at your son on the ground with his leg twisted back behind him at an unnatural angle that you can never fully enunciate. It's this perfect state of panic that threatens to overwhelm you, all while your forebrain is screaming at you to pull your shit together because someone is completely depending on you to take care of this.

I was hanging shelves in the upstairs closet when I heard "The Fall." One second Talen was running down the hall, then I heard a bang followed by crying, followed shortly after by Lisa screaming for me to come to the hall where I found the previously described scene.

The trip to the hospital was surreal. When you start to feel the panic rising in your throat you find that yelling at people can sometimes help push it back down, or I should say I sometimes do (and I think Lisa does also though she'll probably deny it). So we spent a lot of the trip from Matthews to Levine's Children's Hospital alternating between loud arguing and pestering Talen to make sure he wasn't going into shock. If you know Talen, you know that the only time he's ever really quiet is when he's sleeping, but he refused to respond to us in the van. The most we could get from him was an irritated gesture of finger to lips and a quick shushing...

Monday, January 28, 2013

Catching Up (Bullet List Version) and December's MDA Clinic Visit

I think it is probably fitting that 2012 transitioned to 2013 in a tempestuous fashion, given the earth shattering way that 2012 up-ended our lives. I had intended to get on a more regular schedule with updates and changes to the site, but life really hasn't been conducive to a quiet half hour or so at the keyboard. To catch everyone up with the Cliff's Notes version of events since Halloween:

  • We went to Disney (thanks to some really awesome friends and family)
  • I got promoted to Director of Core Systems and Telecommunications at CPCC
  • The entire family got food poisoning at Showmars
  • Then we all got the flu
  • We got to see some of our favorite people over the holiday break (and Jordyn did drunk pushups)
  • Talen went for his second visit at the MDA clinic (first in the full rotation)
  • I wrapped up a project at another university in a less than satisfactory manner
  • Pulled decent grades out at the last minute for fall semester, and signed up for Marketing Management and Professional Ethics for spring.
  • Talen slipped and broke his femur while walking down the hall
  • I went to ACUTA in Tampa and caught pneumonia
That should get everyone caught up in less than five minutes. I'll expand on the MDA clinic after the jump, and add posts on other pertinent items another time.