January 2

My dad has moved back to the Stanford ICU. While this says nothing about his current condition, it feels good that we were able to get him back to a hospital closer to his doctors and closer to home. 

We were all saddened by yesterday’s news, but the information fell heaviest on my dad. This morning at Santa Clara, my dad was in low spirits and quite cranky. Thankfully, his nurse (Celestina) provided comic relief and Polish experience to at least distract my dad from his current condition. The day would have been very different without her: she was very loud, very talkative, but mostly happy. I’m grateful for her today. 

Around 10am, we received the news that my dad would be transferred to Stanford sometime in the afternoon. The case manager spoke directly to my dad, Robbie, and I. I notice that when my dad’s either in pain or tired that he prepares himself to go back home and spend the evening “next to the fire and get sludged by the dogs”. He repeats these hopes over and over again. It’s unclear to me whether or not he has forgotten that he must stay at the ICU (he’s hooked up to monitors by tons of wires, and dependent on the saline drip to keep his brain swelling down), or if he’s truly proposing group activities and plans for the day. I imagine it’s a combination of the two. Thankfully, he has the good nature to accept our explanations of why it’s good for him to stay at the ICU, and that we’ll do those things once he’s able to leave. He’s been at the ICU for over five days, and he’s understandably sick of it. 

By the time my mom and Miles arrived at the Santa Clara ICU, the nurses were preparing my dad to be transferred to Stanford. By 4pm, he had moved into the ICU at Stanford Hospital and was spending the afternoon with Hunter. 

I read him some of the early responses to the “best of 2013” post. What sweetness to read these honest, compelling replies. Selfishly, I get tons more book recommendations. But more importantly, I know that my dad appreciates sharing with each of you. Thank you for your descriptions of your year, your gadgets, your favorite books, your favorite moments, your albums, etc. I update him on caringbridge everyday, and these messages are cherished by my dad. If you haven’t done so, I know he’d love to hear from you.

Dad was exhausted today, and in lower spirits. I hope that the transfer will give him some peace of mind tonight, and that he will have an easier day tomorrow. 

Lots of love.

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