Sunday, May 13, 2007

"I'd like a Happy Meal"

It's no secret that Dan lost 35# after his accident. His "food" currently consists of 600 calories of Isosource drink 4 times a day through his stomach tube, Reliv nutrition drinks, muscle building protein drink and health juices. Nutrition yes, but none of this is as good as eating food through your mouth. We have been on a quest to get Dan to eat food, any food by mouth.

Another related problem of his weight loss and lack of food by mouth is that his skin has thinned, and after only a few hours lying on any one spot he develops a "pressure sores" and raw skin abrasions.

You remember the half way successful cookie test at the hospital, "nothing thicker than a milkshake". One of his speech goals [which also includes eating] has been taste testing micro size portions of various soft foods, like yogurt, apple sauce, peanut butter, jelly's, ice cream etc. The speech therapists have felt for a few weeks that everything in the throat and his swallowing functions were working okay. Most of these things just don't taste right, and it is a discomfort for Dan to swallow while on and ventilator with his cuff down.

So there was a discussion with Dan recently with an "unnamed staffer" in the room who said "Dan you just need to eat some hamburgers and french fries and shakes and anything to get some meat on your bones. That is when Dan said "I'd like a Happy Meal" * [We knew that 2 years of Mike & Dan working at McDonald's would eventually pay off.]

Well, another "unnamed family member" flew out the door to our local micky d's and returned in mere moments with a cheese burger happy meal. An "unnamed family member" held that delicious golden burger in their hands and lifted it to Dan's waiting, may I say drooling mouth, and away he ate. Bite, chew, swallow... bite, chew, swallow...and again... and more...then french fries, then pop. AND all the time a certain "unnamed family member" kept saying "Chew your food well, keep chewing, don't choke". Of course he did just fine.

Of course all of us were ecstatic with joy. Dan can eat real food again !!!

The same thing happened again after seeing a KFC commercial on TV for a juicy chicken sandwich. He said he'd like like one. Well where do you find ANY chicken sandwich at 11:30 pm? So off I go... I mean an "unnamed family member" drove over to the 24 hour Rock 'n' Roll McDonald's and returned with a deluxe crispy chicken sandwich [mayo & bacon = more calories]

Now you ask whats with all this "unnamed" people? Well technically, medically, "don't tell the doctors & lawyers" Dan was still on a liquid only diet, the test said he couldn't swallow food.

We did let the doctors know at the next medical family meeting about his Happy Meal experience and now.....
....he is officially on a regular foods.

His full appetite is not back, he has had stomach aches recently, but this eating thing is just another small step in the right direction. Thank you AGAIN for your prayers.


Anonymous said...

That's a great picture! :-D Yay for Happy meals! Keep packing away those calories, Dan! You and your family are ever in my prayers.

Chelsie said...

Hey Dan!
That's exciting! I haven't had a happy meal in forever! hope you got a rad toy ;-) Keep it as a souvenir. I'm praying constantly for you and your family. Take care pal!


Anonymous said...

hey, that's great, man! Sweetness will be jealous...he LOVES McD's!
hope you have a GREAT Monday!

Jane-Jane said...

Praise God!!!! Dan this is soooo WAY cool! I am fighting back major tears of praise for answered prayers!

And on Mother's Day weekend! You have given your mother the best gift... your willingness to go forward.

I have so much I want to write to you at this point, so I am just going to have to bite the bullet and use the snail mail to share with you.

Dan, you are an encouragement to me! I am sooooo praying for your health and attitude.


Amanda Martin said...

That is such good news! Praise the Lord! Dan, it brings joy to my heart to hear about your progress. All for Jesus!

Papá to the best 2 said...

Way to go dan!

Charlie said...

Awesome photo, Dan! And a great choice of fast food! Congratulations and keep up the good work. You're in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

Dan that is AWESOME!!! I read it to my whole family and they were so excited to hear the news. I love hearing about all the steps you are making. We are continually lifting you up in prayer.
Deb "Native" Hudson

Sweetness said...

Yep - Wammer's right. I AM jealous!!! I can't think of a better "first meal" than Mickey D's.

Hey, did Mike ever get you the jar of Der Dutchman Apple Butter? It's not quite as good as a McDonald's cheeseburger, but it's pretty close.

elj377 said...

In KC Happy Meals are a $1.49 on Mondays from 4-8pm, don't know if it is the same in Chicago! Janea and Jaron have to agree that a cheeseburger is the best! Way to go, keep eating! We are praying for even more progress!

Dan and Erin Jonathan and the kiddos... Janea and Jaron

Anonymous said...

Way to go Dan!!! We are all so happy for you and that it taste good to you! You look great in the picture! We're still praying for you. love the morzaks

Michael Crino said...

Hey buddy!!! how ya doin?

Dan, Im so proud of you!!! This is a season Dan,...KNOW THAT IT WILL GET BETTER: and also know that Jesus is greater than your heart!!! Wow°!!! Jesus is greater! Give him thanks brother!

You are an incredible inspiration to me, to love the Lord during the hardest of times. Keep the strength brother! I had a dream about you last night about me and another guy helping you to breathe on your own. Kinda random for one of my dreams, but who knows? Maybe its foretelling the future! Im so happy that your advancing! Alot of that is in the attitude too...your body needs good andorphines! (maybe I spelled that wrong =)

I love you so much Dan, my brother, my dearest chafe, and I can't wait to see you again! Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good...HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER! Forever God is Faithful, forever God is strong, forever God is with us, forever, and ever!!!

He will always be by your side!
He will never leave you!


Anonymous said...

Wow! What a huge praise! Love the pictures of God's faithfulness through all of this - our children love watching what God is doing in your life, Dan. They are amazed!!! Thank you for allowing us to see first-hand how big our God is!!!!! We may have Mickey D's tonight to celebrate :)

Anonymous said...

A great picture of Dan! Thanks for sharing that! I know my kids ate enough Happy Meals...all for that toy! It does sound good right now...I have to admit!

We pray for you always...and yours.

Also, Dan, what a neat display of strenght and faith to have the elders pray...I grew up that way too...and I would ask my Dad to lay hands on me and pray whenever I was sick and, well, it is just neat...that's all...a neat thing to do!

CU mom praying for you!

Anonymous said...

strength (spelling error)!

Anonymous said...

Hey Dan! My name is Paulina and I was able to meet you at Camp this past March. I just wanted to remind you that there are SO MANY people praying for you! And we know that prayer is powerful!
You and your family have been a huge blessing to my life; you've been a great example of faith and a tool that God has used to reveal His power and faithfulness.

Keep trusting Him! He is using you! Be encouraged by His Word every day!

...I hope you get to enjoy many more Happy Meals!

God is good!

Anonymous said...

Let me know when you are ready for Outback cheese fries and the Mad Max burger!!! Way to go!!! How about bacon and eggs for breakfast! Keep eating Dan! You can do it! I know we all talk about food and now that you can eat, keep thinking about what you want next!!!!
Mrs. Stern

Gramma said...

Dan, it was so good to talk to you this afternoon and then to get on this blog and hear about hamb and fries, well I want you to know that when I get to Chicago, I will bring you your first Portillo's Italian beef sandwich. How about that Dan!!!!! Oh what a blessing I have had today. Can hardly wait until June 8th when we board the train and head east!!! I know I can hear the laughter, but we like trains!!! Dan, keep eating, praying, talking, drinking, and being joyful! Love you so much. Gramma

Gramma said...

PS from Gramma Dan, that cute smile on your face is worth more than the Mona Lisa smile!! I love you.

Anonymous said...

I was jumping up and down for the past couple seconds!!! Woo Hooo!!! Praise God! Dan I am so excited and can't wait to talk with you tomorrow! Phil 4:13 " I can do all things through Him who strengthens me"

Anonymous said...

This is such good news!!
Still praying!!!

In His Grace - Bev - Keizer, Oregon

Amy said...

YEAH!!! What a great blessing!!

Mamá to the best 2 said...

Dan, that is soo awesome and I am so proud of you. next decision: are you going to have chicken or beef at the wedding :)

Your big sister said...

He already said he's having filet mignon - I know I know, not a choice for most of you, but I think we can make an exception!

Kati Brase said...

YAY Dan! I'm so happy for you! Keep up the progress. More importantly keep the attitude, the Lord is with you and will never give you more than you can handle!
With Love,

Anonymous said...


We are thrilled to see the evidence of your increasing appetite!

Praying for you in Kentucky...

Anonymous said...

Yaaaaayyyyyy! :)

Jeremy Hudson said...


Next time, tell them to "super-size you." (said between mouthfuls of a ceremonious cheeseburger in your honor!!!)

Ha, ha. Hope to come see you real soon.