Wednesday, February 20, 2008

February 20, 2008


Hello again friends and family,

Happy belated Valentine's Day! Hope you had a nice one.

Mack is still at Trinity Mission Nursing Home in Farmville. He is eating regular foods quite well and steadily and has been for some time now, which is wonderful. If he continues his progress of eating regular foods, he may be getting rid of the feeding tube soon. He's gotten to the point where he is actually feeding himself more and reaching for his drink on his own.

Mack has also been shaving himself with a regular disposable razor recently, although he's not as precise as he needs to be, but he is careful and he doesn't cut himself, which is amazing.
Mack has seemed more aware and alert of his surroundings, participates more in discussions we have with him, and generally is more talkative than he has ever been before. He had a slight set-back a few weeks ago. He had what seemed like an apparent anxiety attack. Mack started to cry and told his nurse he was afraid. She called Richard at work and told him what was going on. Richard had her put Mack on the phone and talked with him, asking him what he was afraid of, to which Mack responded, "I'm dying, I can't breathe." This episode happened around the time Mack had a bad chest cold and cough as well. Some of his medication had also been changed around that timeframe. He was taking Fentanyl and was changed to Lortab.

Last week Richard got Mack two leg braces from Restorative Medical Inc. (www.restorativemedical.com)for Mack which will help straighten out his legs gradually. It might take a few months or so, but if these braces are successful in getting his legs straight, he most likely will be in a position to stand and transfer himself from the wheelchair to the toilet or into the bed on his own. If he can accomplish that, I have a feeling there won't be any stopping him, because he has told his Dad and me that he wants to walk and move around again. My guess is that the old stubborn streak in him will most likely be the motivating factor to help him accomplish it.

Attached below is a picture, which Richard took about a month ago, of an eagle that hangs around John Randolph Hospital near the Appomattox River.
We are still working to get Mack moved closer to home so that everyone can go visit him more frequently and so that we can check on him daily. It has become a wait-and-see program. We're still patiently waiting and hoping that he can be moved real soon.
Please keep him in your prayers. We all want him moved closer to home and he wants that too. If you go to visit him, please encourage him to move his legs and arms while you're with him because that will help him build muscle tissue back into his legs and strenghten them.

God Bless You All,
Ruth & Richard