January 5

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Greetings from transitional care, day 2.

My mom slept in the room last night to help my dad with understanding and orienting to the new day. For the last week or so, my dad has woken up unsettled and confused with where he is, what’s going on, and where we are. He wakes up around 5:30am, and we’ve found he’s much more settled when he has someone there first thing in the morning. As we’re all realizing, my dad’s much more vital in the mornings, so this is an important time for him to feel surrounded and very not-alone. As the day wears on, he’s more relaxed and tired, and therefore more comfortable being alone if need be.

When I got to the hospital around 10am, he and I shared a slow one on one conversation about different health topics. Thanks to our dear friend, Jon Zimmerman, we’re looking into a ketogenic diet. (Anyone who has experience and knowledge with this diet, I’d love your insight.) He and I looked over some of the general information out there, and I’ll do some deeper research on it in the upcoming days.

I have yet to learn the results of the EEG – recommended by the team to determine whether dad’s been having small, imperceptible seizures due to the tumors. It’s possible that the team reported back to my dad after I left, but I’ll know more tomorrow.

Yesterday, I felt surrounded by all of the family and friends that came in for visits with my dad. I was high energy and upbeat, excited to share with everyone. I woke up feeling heavy today, and likely brought that energy into the room with me as I visited my dad this morning. I’m learning that each day feels very distinct from the previous, and often times I struggle to understand and incorporate the small nuances of this situation into my own perspective.

I left around 1pm to join my mom for a walk around Stanford. The two of us walked around the center as zombies – checked out and rather disengaged. It was nice to spend that time with her, as we both recognize that we’re struggling.

My mom, Hunter, Miles, Robbie, and I returned to the hospital around 6pm to have a pizza dinner with my dad. Hunter will be leaving to go back to Boston for the Spring semester, so we’re hoping to get in some good family time before all the boys leave to go back East.

Tomorrow, he has appointments with his primary neurologist, radiologist, oncologist, and psychologist, as well as the PT/OT/ST team for rehab. It will be a busy day for him, and will hopefully give us a richer understanding of what to expect in the weeks and months to come.

Kennisms of the day:

My uncle Derrick and aunt Kay brought along some See’s candies to the hospital yesterday. Today, my dad and I played a game where we named the candies based on what sort of animal feces they best resembled.

When asked what his plans were for tomorrow, he responded that he planned to watch his beard grow. As you can see from the photo attached (from at least 4 days ago), he’s got quite the fishstick (his words) growing. Still patchy, but pretty good for Ken.

I’ll send more news tomorrow.

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