December 29

Greetings from the ICU! Robbie and I went into the ICU this morning to have breakfast (the classic cream currant scone and now a whole milk latte – an upgrade from his poor man’s latte of drip coffee with half and half) and chat with him through to the afternoon. 

My family and I are learning to take the visits in shifts, so that my dad has continual visitors throughout the day, even if he’s exhausted or sleeping. The morning seems to be the best window for him: he was fresh and talkative in my visit with him this morning, although he was in a significant amount of pain (he rated a 7-9 out of 10 for his headache, which is more than his 6-7 from earlier this week). 

I’ve noticed that my dad feels the happiest when he’s around a small group of others who circle around him and shoot the shit. This way he’s able to doze, and can still chirp in whenever he has something to say. His contributions are hilariously “Ken”.

After Robbie and I left around 1pm, my mom, Andy, and Mike spent the afternoon with my dad. He was in a lot of pain as the day went on, likely due to the too-low-dose of pain medication he was receiving. Advocates mom and Andy helped reduce some of his 9/10 ratings of pain. Andy brought along some red beans and rice for my dad – a classic Bohn-Wapman/Johnson dish. Hunter stopped by later in the evening, although my dad slept through most of Hunter’s visit. As I said, he’s more energized and lucid earlier in the day, and gets increasingly more exhausted as the day wears on. 

Medical update: his brain is still swollen, and his doctors are treating this with a saline drip as well as a higher dose of steroid to reduce the swelling. Best case scenario is that this is just precautionary – most of the patients like my dad have some swelling post-op, although it’s usually in the first 3-5 days after their surgery. My dad had surgery over a week ago. Worst case scenario is that this could cause a hernia and lead to other very serious complications. We’re taking it easy, and are comforted to know that he’s in the ICU receiving more attention from the nursing staff, but are eager for him to return to rehab once the swelling goes down. We’ll know more tomorrow whether the saline IV has been effective in reducing the swelling in his brain. 

On the home front, the Wapman/Robbie clan are forever grateful to Babsey+family, and my grandma for the piles upon piles of delicious food sent our way. We feasted tonight. 

With love, thanks, and peace.

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