Lea had a tough day today, but still did pretty well. Things were very hectic at the hospital today from before sunrise until well after dark. Hartford Hospital’s ambulance helicopters, named LifeStar, http://harthosp.org/lifestar, made numerous emergency flights today, bringing patients in all day long. One patient, a victim of a serious trauma accident was placed in the ICU next to Lea, and kept the staff very busy all day.

I arrived at about 6:30 this morning, and during shift change gave Lea her morning bath and rubbed her down with her favorite body lotion. I can do everything except her back, which is done when she is being turned from one side to another. I washed her hair with baby shampoo and combed it all out so it would dry, and Liz, her day nurse gave her a French braid. She looked very nice!

She was already breathing on her own when I arrived, and went 5 hours before she began to tire and was put back on rest mode, During the time she was breathing on her own, Dr. Amy Ayers did her dressing change, and reported that things were looking “very good” in the wound area. Lea, however, began laboring to breathe after the dressing change, and was then put on rest.

Liz let Lea rest for about three hours, and then we moved her to her cardiac chair, which we turned to face the window, so Lea could “look” outside. All she had to do was open her eyes and focus. But, she didn’t. She did snooze, however, which she seems to do as well in the chair as she does in the bed. While in the chair she was put back on work mode on the ventilator, but only could go a couple of hours before tiring, and being put back on rest mode. We returned her to bed at 5:30.

The pharmacologist is going to reevaluate the medication formulations being used for Lea, to see if adjustments need to be made now that she is nearing the end of her narcotic sedation. As she withdraws from the narcotics, she will need other types of pain control, so a plan will be devised to help her progress through those steps. Her abdomen is still open from side to side, her liver is still very, very swollen, and fluids are still leaking into the abdominal cavity. All these things have to be taken into consideration as well, to develop a course of action.

Her weight today is 83.3 Kg, with 6 pillows on her bed, with inflatable stockings and gown, and countless hoses in, on and around her, mattress motor, etc. This was important, because when she was weighed last night, the scales built into the bed indicated that she weighed 116.4 Kg, or about 256 pounds! The night nurse, Barbara, left a note that the bed needed to be zeroed when Lea was in the cardiac chair today. We got a good laugh out of that when Barbara came in at seven tonight, saying that we would tell Lea we remember her losing 40 pounds one day! 

Her support in rest mode on the ventilator was reduced today, to 8 breaths per minute, 40% oxygen at 8 peep. She was actually doing an average of 17 breaths per minute, and oxygenating to 96 percent, which means she is doing some voluntary work even when in rest mode. This is a good thing, indicating that she is getting stronger. Praise God! We have been SO blessed! Time after time God has worked miracles to bring us through the many trials Lea has faced.

We have to keep in mind that she was given only 48 hours to live two days after being admitted to the emergency room on July 16, and before the 48 hours was over, she was moved to the present hospital by helicopter, where she was operated on and given a 15% chance of survival. We have had our glorious, joyous ups, and our horribly soul-shaking downs. Her heart has stopped twice, her lungs have crashed twice, and yet He keeps giving us victory.

I have received so many heart-warming notes from wonderful folks who are following Lea’s battle for survival, that I feel led to share some of these testimonies with you. Here is a particularly wonderful testimony of how God’s children pull together in these times of trouble.

“Dear Larry,

My husband and I are some of those people praying for Lea and for you who have never met either of you. My sister has forwarded to us all of your emails. Unfortunately up until now, we have not responded with a card or email although our prayers have been with you all this time. I have also passed a request on to a Prayer Circle maintained by one of my co-workers. So here in Houston and beyond there is a large group of people praying for Lea’s healing and for comfort and strength for you.

Praise the Lord that we can join together in the community of faith in Jesus Christ over the miles and make our pleas known to God. And He is ever faithful. (I picked up a little card in a Christian bookstore last Monday, a Pass It On message card, which says: “Trials are not enemies of faith but are opportunities to prove God’s faithfulness.”)

We cannot tell you how much your emails and the spiritual insight found in
them have meant to us. Your faith in God, and love for your dear wife, have
shown through the emails you have written, proclaiming God’s faithfulness and witnessing to His grace. This has been a true inspiration to us and we thank you for sharing your deepest thoughts in such a trying time.

We will continue to pray that the Lord will grant that miraculous healing we are waiting for, even more miraculous than what He has done so far, after all, all things are possible for the Creator who loves us so much.

Blessings always”

I continue to be humbled by the work for Him being accomplished through these updates on the progress of my sweetheart. I am constantly reminded that losing her to God is not the worse thing that can happen. What is the worst that can happen? I would certainly suffer if He took her, and I would grieve awfully. But, I know that she would go to a reward well beyond what we can imagine. And, she has already agreed that we will look for each other when we gain paradise, so we can continue our relationship.

I pray that she will be granted miraculous healing, and that our future includes ministering for Him in some fashion side by side. She has been such a wonderful blessing in my life, I’m not ready to give her up. I want more. As long as we can give her a quality life, we are going to continue on this bumpy path to recovery He has chosen for us. We are certainly learning from it, and our love continues to deepen. For Him. For her.

Thank you for your prayers and support. May God bless you with love and kindness for those who mean so much to you. May God bless you richly with that love and kindness returned to you tenfold when the time comes that you need it so very much.