Can you believe it’s been 8 days since Adam was discharged home from the hospital?
Being home has been good in so many ways:
· Being home means sleeping in a real bed with flannel sheets
· Being home means Adam can eat good (not hospital) food
· Being home means watching college basketball on a TV large enough to see the score
· Being home means comfort
Being home also means the days creep by:
In the hospital there were nurses and doctors and physical therapists and dietitians and occupational therapists and more nurses to distract us with vitals and meds and walks and talks. Home leaves a lot of room for feelings, and trust us, there are plenty of feels. Processing through a terminal diagnoses, chemo, a “cancer free” proclamation, 5 surgeries (one of which was a near-death experience), (temporary) loss of “normal functioning”, and still another pending surgery is a lot to think about. Not to mention pain has a way of elongating time. And Adam is still in a lot of pain.
Here’s a health update:
· Adam is in a lot of pain. I’ll just say it again because it’s true and it’s exhausting. Healing is hard work, and usually it’s slow work. Pain takes a toll physically and emotionally.
· Adam is retaining less and less water. His legs are almost water-free (even when he doesn’t wear his compression leggings) but his stomach still hasn’t figured out how to absorb liquid. Adam had an outpatient draining procedure on Tuesday and they drained another 3 liters. They have drained 33 pounds of liquid off of Adam’s abdomen in the last 2 weeks. The good news is that (despite the terrible unpleasantness of being stuck with a huge needle each time), he feels better once drained and that each drain measure is less liquid. The hope is that Adam will only have to have 1 more drain if any, before his body learns how to absorb liquid naturally again.
· Adam is a Skinny Minnie. From observation alone, I can tell you that while incredibly effective, you don’t want to be on the cancer/chemo/surgery diet. Please pray for Adam’s appetite to increase, and for him to be able to consume enough calories and nutrients to restore his strength and energy.
· Adam’s vitals are improving – Aside from weight, Adam’s vitals are in much better shape. His blood pressure is good and his heart rate is steadily going down. His heart is now beating 60 beats per minute less than when he was in the ICU. It still needs to come down another 20 beats per minute to be his pre-surgery healthy heart rate, but this is amazing progress.
· Adam is tired of his cane. While he looks really hipster, he’s really tired of needing a cane to get from room to room. Your fitness instructor isn’t lying when he or she says that core strength is critical for health and movement. Adam’s core was cut from top to bottom and he is feeling the pain with every movement. It’s also hard to burn calories when you aren’t consuming enough calories (but we already covered that).
Here’s the truth: Adam is healing. He has made incredible progress since his surgery. This is just the slow part of the race that feels hilly and impossible. But Adam will push through because he’s incredibly strong. We’re just both weary.
But we would be far wearier if it weren’t for the community that has rallied around us. Thank you for the meals, the letters, the gift cards, the house cleanings, donations, the t-shirt buying, and the messages. You are part of God’s amazing grace to us and we are humbled, amazed, and blessed by you!
Thank God for grace and canes. Truly, both are helping us to keep on walking, no matter how slow.
A and A