Lea had another stellar day today. She had her dressing changed at mid-day (25th surgical procedure), and was moved to her cardiac chair at 1:45, where she slept comfortably, sitting up, until 6:15! She would have stayed there all night, I think, if Adam hadn’t wanted to get her settled back into her bed before he went home for the evening.

She went about fourteen hours without ventilator support today! She was breathing at a rate of 18-20 breaths per minute with volumes of 500-600, even while sitting up in the chair. The only time she was in rest mode was during the dressing change at mid-day. Her Ativan was reduced to 1.6 ml/hr today, but she still slept very well under the influence of Thorazine, which does pretty much the same thing, but isn’t a narcotic.

Evidently, even though she probably will be weaned from the Ativan in a few more days, it will take four to seven days for it to completely clear out of her body. The drug tends to lodge in the fat cells, and it takes a while to get rid of it. Ativan reduces anxiety and is tranquilizing, so that means we could have some anxious sessions ahead of us when she comes off of it.

I’ve had some recipients of the updates ask about whether they should have gotten a photo of Lea in the chair, rather than just the picture of her hand. No, I didn’t send anything else out. Sorry, I should have mentioned what you would be seeing. I don’t think she would appreciate it if I sent out a photo with her in her present condition.

The photo of her hand, though, does show the amount of swelling that has gone down. You can actually see knuckles now! Also, her nails have grown longer than she has ever had them, and I keep them touched up so they will look nice when she awakens enough to notice them. It should be good for a laugh. I will get her toenails trimmed though, because I don’t want her trying to hang from any trees while in withdrawal.

I am getting a lot of notes from folks with well wishes for a speedy recovery, and I appreciate the wonderful comments about what our updates have meant to you over the past several weeks. It has been very gratifying to learn of so many positive experiences that have resulted from this illness. God works in mysterious ways, and works miracles from misery. I pray that we are on the road to recovery, and that He doesn’t have any more jokes up His sleeve.

Warmest regards,

Larry

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