Thursday, June 11, 2015

Moved to Transitional ICU and A Regular Room

In one day, Danny was moved to the transitional ICU overnight, and then into a regular room later that evening.  In ONE DAY!!!  Praise the Lord!!!!  I was so happy!!!  He is still in a lot of pain, makes such great progress every day!!!! 


Today's milestones:

Hemothorox on right side is almost completely gone.

Been transitioned from IV to oral meds.  

Able to push his self back in the chair with out assistance. 

Oxygen levels are good.  

Sitting upright and eating.  

Think hand-holding and comfort don't mean anything? Ask the guy with the 8 broken ribs and multiple spine fractures how comforting and relaxing it feels!

My niece, Sarah, made this wonderful Get Whale Soon poster for Danny.  Sarah was such a blessing to me and Danny during this time.  She was either by my side or Danny's bedside as much as she possible could including spending many nights at my house so I wouldn't be alone.  Danny considered her his Guardian Angel!

We have been blessed in so many ways during this difficulty.  Our families have been so wonderful and supportive during this time!!!  Not only did I marry a great guy, but his family has been nothing less than super wonderful!  My family has also been super wonderful!  Friends and customers too!!!

SUPER-CALI-FRAG-LISTIC-EXPI-ALA-DOCIOUS!!!  is the only way to describe the out-pouring of love, support, encouragement, well-wishes and prayers from EVERYONE that knows Danny!!!

Count your blessing!!!  Look at the good--look at what you HAVE and NOT at what you don't!!!
With gratitude,
Maria, Dan's Wife

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

June 10: Rib Retriever

When I went into Dan's room on the morning of the 10th, the first thing I noticed was most of his monitors were removed.  And, he was sleeping--finally!!!  He was so tired, but wouldn't or couldn't sleep.

If you look at his left hand, he's holding "Charlie."  He gave me "Charlie" when I was going on a trip without him.  So, I brought him to the hospital to offer a little comfort.

At one time during his ICU stay, he placed "Charlie" on his chest, and said this is my "Rib Retriever."

During another moment in the ICU, Danny had a death grip on my hand.  For a little relief, I put "Charlie" in his hand.

He would not let go of that little doggie!  Even rugged tree guys need a little comfort!!!

Milestones for today:

Sitting up in occupational chair for 2 hours.

Ate a few bites of solid food, and an entire fruit cup.

Smiled at his nurse.  Smiled while sleeping.

Chest tube was removed.  {PS--If a doctor ever tells you to count to 3, be ready on 2!!!}

Less loopy.  Seems more like himself.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Fitted for Back Brace

This afternoon, Dan was fitted for a back brace.

He stood up, and was transferred from the bed to an occupational chair, and is now sitting up!!

Oxygen levels are up.

Oxygen mask was removed and placed on nasal tube.


Changing his pain meds--PCA not working for him because he wouldn't press the button.

Eating a little more.

Still making jokes.

Told me the occupational therapist was making him do sit ups.  WHAT??!!!  Took me a minute to understand.  He meant his incentive spirometer--felt like he was doing sit ups!

Someone said to me "at least I can laugh."  I have to laugh, and keep a positive attitude--for Danny!!! There is nothing I can do to change what happened. Don't get me wrong--I cried--a lot--at home--in private!!!  Cried out to God.  Poured my heart out to God.  "Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge." Psalm 62:8

Monday, June 8, 2015

Day 3/4: June 8/9

This was a really difficult day for Danny. ICU psychosis set in. Nurse told me that was a little unusual for only 3 days in ICU and someone his age. But, hey, you can't tell if it's day or night, all kinds of things are beeping, and buzzing. You've got all kinds of wires attached to your body everywhere.  

In lots of pain--you can see it on his face!!  Drinking lots of water, but not eating much.  

Very itchy from the pain meds.  Seemed confused.  Agitated.  Pulled out his iv.  

Despite his agitation and pain, Danny did not lose his sense of humor!  Kept saying "son of a biscuit maker."  I've known Danny for over 30 years, and I've never heard him say that.

Couldn't sleep.  {Wouldn't sleep:  thought they were harvesting his organs!}

Complained of being cold--it was the compressed air mask. Kept saying "this is ridiculous!"

Told his nurse, Elsa, she was no princess!!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Day 1: From the ER to Trauma ICU

Waiting, and more waiting.

Resident doctor told me spinal cord is intact, no neck injury, no head injury. All good news. 

Dan remembers what happened, but not how it happened. Said several times "why" did this happened. 

I was told a branch kicked back and knocked the ladder over. Dan went one way, and the ladder went another. Javier did everything right--told Lee to call 911, told Dan not to move, and opened his jaw. 

Dan was medivaced to the Christiana Trauma Unit, but he doesn't remember. He remembers hearing propellers, but thought he was dreaming. Thought he was going to wake up in his own bed at home.

Dan's injuries are extensive.  He has 6 broken ribs on the right side, and 2 on the left.  He has fractures in his upper and middle back, and some compression at the bottom.

One rib punctured his right lung.  A chest tube was inserted to drain the fluid.

More waiting...Dr. Sugarman called during the night and said no surgery needed, and will probably set him up with a back brace. Expects Danny to have a complete healing within 8-12 weeks. 

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Day 1: Tree Trimming and Ladders

Tree work is among the most dangerous jobs. Add a step ladder, which is dangerous on its own, and it could be life threatening. On Saturday, Dan was pruning a row of white pines on a step ladder.  As he was almost finished a branch kicked out and knocked him off the ladder.  The ladder went one way, and he went the other.  I was told that it looked like he did a somersault before hitting the ground flat on his back.  I am so grateful that he was wearing a helmet with a strap that went under his chin!!!

I was in NYC to see Wicked when I got a text, "Is Dan ok?" from Dan's sister.  I almost dismissed it because I thought she sent the text to the wrong person.  Five minutes until Wicked was going to start, and I decided to call anyway just to make sure.  So glad I did!

Of course, we left immediately for the ER.  That was the fastest drive home from NYC EVER, but felt like the LONGEST!!!!!  (And, it didn't help that I had to stop three times along the way to use the bathroom)!

Family and friends were calling me and texting me updates until I got there.  That was a real comfort.  One friend, who is a Physician's Assistant (thank you KJ!)  went to the ER to get as much info as she could.  She was able to tell me about Danny's injuries--she gave it to me straight--this is what we know so far--and it was all fixable!!!  "Fixable" was the word she used!!!  And, that word gave me so much comfort during the drive to the hospital.

God's Word gives us peace, "And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and mind in Christ Jesus." (Phillipians 4:7).  I believe in the power of prayer and in God's Word.  Those two things got me through that car ride to the hospital!  I knew in my heart that God was in control of whatever happened, and that He would see us through whatever was next!

If you don't have peace like that in your own life, you CAN have it!!!  That peace only comes from knowing Jesus!!  I once heard each person has a "God-shaped hole" reserved just for God (don't know who said that--sorry), and it can only be filled by God.  We can try to fill it with family, career, hobbies, drugs, alcohol or even exercise!!  Nothing will satisfy it EXCEPT God!!!!  If you are seeking a "peace that transcends all understanding" especially in the midst of difficulty, please find somewhere private to go, ask Jesus for forgiveness.  Tell him you want to receive Him into your heart, and that you want His peace in your life.

Please check back soon--I will post updates on Danny as often as I can.
~Maria, Dan's Wife

Monday, March 24, 2014

Pine Tree Removal

Today's job is a pine tree removal at Richardson Park United Methodist Church on Maryland Avenue.  This church as been around since 1950.

It is a cold spring day today with a slight wind this morning, but I love this picture with the pine tree, the bucket boom and our great American Flag!!!