New Steps in the Rain and Snow
Things are loosening up as Joseph finishes the course of antibiotics to kill the pneunomia and latest bladder infection. He is doing well. The new step yesterday and today was an experiment allowing him to go all night without the respirator. Also they are trying him out with a trach button (a plug that keeps the stoma open while blocking the hole from allowing air to pass in and out). With the trach button, Joseph has been breathing through his nose and mouth rather than through his tube for the last couple of days. This is a test to see how he'll do, but so far he has been "doing great". Today they tested a new electronic ectoskeletal device on Joseph that stimulates the muscles in a manner similar to the 'e-stim' they been doing on his wrist, only with a spiffy new device. Here is the link to the "Ness H200 Neuroprosthetic & Rehabilitation System": http://www.bionessinc.com/products.aspx. This is really outstanding, (insurance probably would not cover something like this, and it is outlandishly expensive) with it Joseph can open and close his hand. The video on the site's home page is pretty interesting.
New Steps for the House (literally) & Shovelling Snow off Joseph's Bedroom Floor:
Sunday morning before going up to the hospital to feed Joseph breakfast, his Dad spent a half hour shoveling snow off the sub-floor of the bedroom (that's the last time we expect to do that!) We are grateful after working through the day on Monday that Mark Maxfield (our carpenter/handyman) listened to his bones that said it was going to rain on Tuesday-- He did not tear into the roof to begin tying in the new ceiling joists for Joseph's bedroom. If he had, it would have been raining into the family room. As it was, it leaked a bit into the downstairs bathroom where the holes are cut into the foundation for the new plumbing. While waiting for the rain to cease, on Tuesday Mark built the new steps and platform that serves as a landing for the wheelchair lift in the garage. Today he replaced the window in the upstairs bathroom with a small one (needed to make space for the roof of the addition). The making of the main level of our home into a warm and suitable place for Joseph's new world, continues with painting etc.
We so much appreciate all the many who are so willing to help out. We had a dozen men from the ward over tonight, breaking up huge concrete slabs (buried as fill in our lot, dug up by the excavation of the footings) and putting them in a trailer for the dump. All this in the rain, no less. "Greater love hath no man. . ."
The Doctors say Joseph can come home in two to three weeks. Mom and Dad are scrambling to get things ready, not just the house but everything else as well. Dad found a vehicle on Ebay last week and bought it on Tuesday. It is brand new . . . and wrecked. It is a Chevrolet minivan customized by Braun as a wheelchair vehicle.( http://www.braunlift.com/products/consveh/consveh.asp) as we arrange to get it here then get it fixed, it remains to be seen how wonderful a bargain it will be. Anyone know a good bodyshop?
If you haven't checked out the counter on the very bottom of this page you really should. Joseph is so inspired by all those checking this blog from all over the world. As so many prayers ascend to heaven, it really buoys up his faith and ours.
Also see http://www.bringjosephhome.com/
1) Physical Therapist from the manufacturer puts the new device on Joseph. Note the little red dot where the trach tube usually is. Thats the 'button' shutting off the trach.
2) Electrical stimulation caused Joseph's hand and fingers to extend.
3) Ceiling joists ready to go up on the addition (Tomorrow is the day!). Note the little new windo in the upstairs bathroom, making way for the roof. Note also the standing water on the floor from all the rain.
4) The new landing for the wheelchair lift outside the back door into the garage.
5) Joseph's new wheels (assuming we can get it repaired), the good view.
6) Opps! the bad view. The engine, and passenger side with the wheelchair lift are undamaged and brand new. Lets hope a month from now we are saying: "what a fabulous deal that was!"