Dear Loved Ones,

I am SO overjoyed as I begin this update because I just experienced the first reaction from Lea since she went under sedation two weeks ago tomorrow. One of the practices surgical nurses employ in the healing process is to watch for signs that the patient can be brought a little closer to consciousness by administering less sedatives. Lea recovered quite well from her surgery today, showed good signs of stability, and all of her vital signs were well within expectations.

So her nurse, Renee, brought her up out of her deep, deep sleep, while still keeping her sedated enough that she couldn’t really move much more than her eyelids. While she couldn’t open her eyes, she could squint in response to questions. I got to talk to her for about fifteen minutes, and got so excited I kept forgetting to ask questions so she could “wink” for me. It was such an awesome feeling to know that I was connecting with her again! Praise God!

I had spent time with her early this morning before going for my stress test, and was saddened when I got back to learn that she had gone early to surgery. A doctor Ivy performed the surgery today, since Dr. Mah had to be away. Dr. Ivy had attended a previous surgery with Dr, Mah and knew the case well enough to perform the procedure. He stated that a little more of the pancreas had to be removed, but that it was only a very small amount. She returns for surgery Sunday and Tuesday. We don’t know about any future scheduling at this point, but are hopeful that she is nearing the end of this surgical phase of her recovery.

Lea had a nose bleed that developed right after the surgery, likely due to the heparin being given her to prevent blood clots in her legs, but it had subsided by early evening. She continues to receive replacement blood, as she is still bleeding into her abdomen due to the repetitive surgeries, is nearly off blood pressure medication, and the Sudafed seems to be controlling her runny nose sufficiently.

She looks better to me tonight. She is losing some of the fluid build up, and starting to get some of her features back. If she were awake I would kid her by saying that if you squint your eyes real tight, and get just the right angle, you can still see her in there. Her hands, feet and face aren’t quite as puffy, and she has real good color. I realize that this is probably just one of those good days, but I’ll take all of them I can get. Tomorrow will be a rest day, with no surgery, so I am hopeful that she will rebound greatly overnight, and be ready to fly through the next surgery without any complications.

I keep wondering: What would I do if I should lose her? She is the center of my world. She is my strength. She has been my reason for living for most of my life. She has always been my best friend, my most trusted confidant, my partner, my buddy, playmate and lover. I can’t imagine life without her at my side. Her smile lights up my life. Our lives are so intertwined I don’t think one part is much of anything without the other.

I enjoyed reading your greeting cards, emails and eGreetings to her today, and am very touched by the thoughts and expressions of love you have shared with her. Thank you for your concern, and your expressions of affection, and especially for your prayers. They are definitely working! Please keep lifting her full recovery up to God.

My sincerest appreciation,