Monday, May 7, 2007

A Great Weekend with My Brother

Well I got to spend a longer weekend with Dan than I ever have and let me tell you - we had fun! Usually when Dan and I are together it consists of some talking (no, not with his voice) and me trying to convince him to do something fun, but him being too tired so we sit and channel surf.

Well...this weekend was different! Because Dan had such a great week, he is now on a roll! On Saturday his Physical Therapy was at 10:30am - so naturally he was up in his chair, dressed, ready to go with his cuff down by 10:15! The schedule worked out so that he was able to have speech therapy right after and that consisted of him trying different foods (he had several spoonfuls of ice cream and ate a stale Cheetos - I got him a pretzel instead!) Then I asked if he wanted to stay there or go back to his room (usually he is ready to get back in bed at this point) He wanted to walk. So walk we did - for 2 hours! They told me that 10 times around the floor is 1 mile - so I think we went about 2 miles. Great and much needed exercise for Jen! With a record 6+ hours in his chair and his cuff down for about 13 hours, Dan was ready to crash.

Sunday was very much the same - cuff down at 8am, ready to go in his wheelchair for friends from school visiting and more walking. It is so nice for Dan (and for me) to get out of the room; having air blow on you while you're moving is so much better than laying in a bed in a stuffy room. Dan and I also discovered that we like the chair on the fastest speed!
Walking around the floor is nice, just not quite good enough. The Dr. mentioned below came to check on Dan and after chatting, then pausing said, "Have you been outside yet?" Naturally my heart leaped! Sure enough, within half an hour he had arranged for Respiratory to come down with us and Dan got to smell fresh air for the first time in 2 months! We were only out for about 10 minutes because it was chilly and the doctor wanted to watch out for Dan, but I think he could have stayed out much longer! Also, because Dad fully knows how to operate Dans support equipment, the ventilator, lowering the cuff, changing the trach, using the portable suction machine, and knows how to use the mouth vent bag him and mom are able to take Dan out without medical staff with them, which means - Dan will be out a LOT more!

It was such a great weekend, filled with much more hard work by Dan. He is drinking a lot more by mouth and solid foods may be just around the corner. He has started gaining some weight, enjoys being in his wheelchair, has his cuff down all the time, and reminds me that he needs protein shakes or that I or the nurse have to do something that we forgot about!

People LOVE hearing Dan's voice; so many of the nurses and PCT's commented, "whoa! I've never heard your voice before!" One even got teary eyed! Our thoughts exactly!

I am SO proud of Dan and how hard he has worked and how much progress he has made so quickly, especially this past week. We're still working on getting him more comfortable and sleeping more that 4-5 hours at night; but from here on out - things are only looking up! Next step - Dan, what meal are you going to have at the wedding? :-D

Love, Your big sister Jen!


Anonymous said...

Woo Hoo! Way to go Dan and way to go Jen!! What a blessing to reap the rewards of your hard work. Jen, I thought of you often this weekend at graduation, great to hear about your amazing weekend as well. Dan, you are such an inspiration to those of us following your progress , I appreciate the opportunity to follow along, pray specifically and watch God work on your behalf. What a blessing your big sis is for you! Thanks for sharing Jen.

beth bolander

Anonymous said...

Hey Dan,
It's so good to hear all the progress you're making. I can't wait to come again and hang out!


Anonymous said...

So glad to hear you're on the road to recovery!! My fam and I are praying for you everyday. I smoked a cigar this weekend after graduation, and I was gonna smoke it in honor of you, but I think I cut it wrong or lit it on the wrong end or something (hey it was about 1 am outside so it was dark), and it absolutely sucked. So my next cigar is in honor of you :) I love you bro.

Keep trusting God!!

Anonymous said...

Two kindergarteners mentioned Dan during prayer request time in small groups at Harvest yesterday. So, together these sweet children lifted up Dan in prayer for peace and continued progress. I have been checking the blog and praying regularly at home for a while now as well. Thank you for keeping us all posted and know that you are loved, thought of, and prayed for by many people, including these young children!

In His Grip,
Erin Lasky

Anonymous said...

Praise the Lord for His mercy endures forever.
His lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail, They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. Lam.3:22,23 (Read 19-29)
Thanking the Lord for such good news. Hope it keeps on the rise. Just keep your head up. Even in the case where there may be one step forward, 3 steps back, remember that God is still watching over you and has His perfect plan for your future life. Only time will tell what that may be. But for now, His plan is right where you are. Be that constant testimony to those around you. What a blessing you are in spite of circumstances. It has also been a blessing to hear what God has done so far even to those of us keeping up with the blog health news. God Bless you Dan and all of your family too.

Prayers from Seattle

Gramma said...

Dan - what a great blessing to read this weekend story. Yea and praise God. I just want to shout and read it to all here in Washington who have been praying for you. Never walk into church without someone asking "how's Dan"? God is using you in so many ways - you are a great testimony! Love from Gramma

Anonymous said...

I thought I had a good week of only one exam, graduating and being able to go home but that doesnt even compare to your great week. Keep your eyes fixed on Christ the author and perfector of our faith!!! I'm praying for you and I love you brother!


Anonymous said...

Got to meet Matt this weekend. He was just help people move out. He has the true heart of a servent. Thanks Matt for moving those heavy boxes.But I didn't have a chance to read the blog until today...what a wonderful news to hear!!!! Still praying for you in Northern Ohio

Dan's Fam said...

i think you mean Mike, Dan's twin. We do have a son Matt who is in Guatamala with the twins.

you can correct your comment if you wish. thanks

Jane-Jane said...

Keep the focus Dude... I am doing lots of praying and praising God on your behalf! And there is lots of Hallelujah dancing going on for the awesome week you have had!

Anonymous said...

We are praising the Lord in Puebla, Mexico for Dan's progress.

Anonymous said...

Praise God for all He has done! It's so exciting to hear all that has been going on this past week! I hope to come and visit again soon. I'm still praying for you all. God bless.


elj377 said...

Praise God for getting to be outside in the sunshine! We are praying for the whole family as you go through so many adjustments!
Lots of love and hugs to all

Dan and Erin Jonathan

Anonymous said...

Hey Dan,
When I'm not doing credit card stuff for MLS... I'm going to want to walk around Michigan Ave in the sun with you (supervised of course)~ it's awesome all the smiles your giving people!

With much love,
(aunt) Mary Kay

Anonymous said...


I just wanted to let you know that you have faithful prayers from Oaxaca, Mexico. When I got home from camp in Puebla, my six year old sister Mikayla, who was there the week before, said that "Capitan Scratch" was her favorite. That was before we told her about the accident. She reminds us to pray for you and asks God every night to help you sleep well. We will all continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers.
Isaiah 40:31 But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strengh; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not grow weary, they shall walk and not faint.

Keverly (you might remember my brother Miles)

kati said...

Jen, I have to tell you that blog made me tear up. I love you guys and am praying for Dan's continued improvement, and it sounds like he still have a great attitude and is being a great witness for the glory of Christ.
Love you all

Karen S. said...

I am the mother of a Cedarville student who just finished her sophmore year. She told me about this blog for "Dan from her school". I have a brother who is an incomplete quad and he has been in a chair since Nov 1988. Our whole family can testify that the lord is faithful to his children. It is a very good gift to have a deep foundation in the Lord as you start out on this new journey. I will continue to pray for you, Dan, as you learn to LIVE in this changed body. Blessings, Karen Schoch

kimmccombs said...

hey kid this is yr cousin kim yr grandma pat niece Im sorry I just heard about you God love ya ,when I heard I just pictured you and yr brother being so little ( that was when I saw you last). WE've had some trouble here with our family as well my kids grandpa is recovering from anyrsms he had 2 God sure has looked over all of us hasn't He. We will have u in our prayers. love cousin kim