Hello family and friends! Your prayers continue to factor into my recovery, I thank you for that.
Met with my cardiologist yesterday, cut me down to a single script and cut its dosage by 50%. He's excused me for 6 weeks now before we meet again.
Met with my surgeon today, he wanted to check out my previous infection site, all ok. After hearing about my 12 mile bike ride yesterday preceded by a 40min power walk, he gave me an early cardiac rehab diploma, said no need to go back (4 weeks vs. 12) :-).
I have an Echocardiogram scheduled at the end of this week to establish a baseline for my new bovine valve.
Assuming no setbacks, I expect to return to work on 4-21.
We are still living high on the hog with all the food supplies and gift cards. Many thanks to so many.
Rejoicing yet again this morning after receiving the news that dad will be heading home this morning. After meeting with the surgeon yesterday morning, he broke the news to my dad that we wanted to keep him one more day to really make sure that infection was gone and didn't get into his blood stream. After lots of prayer and praise we are beyond thankful to have caught this early and to have him back home today. God is so good and we are so thankful! Thank you for all your prayers!
As we are reminded in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 "Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."
We are facing another minor setback with my dad today. Yesterday he noticed a small red spot developing above his elbow on his arm. This morning he woke up and it had doubled in size and was causing him some pain. After doing some research and having symptoms similar to blood clots, we took him into walk in just to be safe. He was in walk in for less than five minutes and they sent us right to the ER. Once in the ER the doctor quickly reassured us that this was not a blood clot, rather an infection caused by a blood draw he had on Wednesday.
Much to my dad's disappointment, he was admitted again for observation. They are worried of infection traveling to his new valve, so they will be monitoring him overnight and if all goes well with his new antibiotics, he will be home again tomorrow.
As my grandma reminded my dad this morning, in all circumstances we need to give thanks to our Lord. She also wanted to remind him that this trial may not only be benefiting him but also someone else. (A humbling reminder)
So, we will continue to give thanks and praise HIM in this storm. We know that God works for the good of those who love Him & are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)
This morning we are totally rejoicing and beyond thankful for the news my dad received. He had his two week follow up appointment with Doctor Riveron and received the following news; his heart is back in rhythm (which means he can get off all of the nasty drugs), his EKG looked great, he got the OK to drive (which means he will be able to drive to his rehab appointments, AKA Freedom ;) ), he will have a follow up Echo in April to have a new baseline for his new valve, and Dr. Riveron thinks my dad will be back to work in roughly six weeks. We are humbled by all of the prayers and support we have received through this whole process and even more thankful to be serving a gracious and loving God who truly is the greatest Physician. Thank you again for all of your prayes!! God is good!
Since coming through ER late Wednesday, we have learned much more about the post-cardiac surgery risk of atrial fibrillation. Unlike the chronic version depicted in drug commercials, this is thankfully a temporary issue expected to resolve with time and treatment.
In my case, I'm in the 30% category for developing this condition. Most develop in the early hours after surgery. With the delay in my symptoms, it's not clear when I went out of rhythm, but likely last weekend. We have been told that inflammation is the instigator so I'm on a cocktail of drugs to deal with root cause and symptoms.
The drip-line inpatient attack plan did not change the abnormal pattern they call 'atrial flutter' (chainsaw teeth between intervals). Concern in managing this is stroke risk. Time and Rx controls complete my discharge plan today (writing from hospital room, expect to be home for lunch).
I will be in for an updated EKG 3-27 to see if my heart has returned to normal rhythm allowing upper and lower cardiac chambers to effectively work in concert (amazed by our creators genius design)!
Appreciate all the support out there. Pray for this o'l white boy to get his rhythm back :-)
Asking for a few prayers for my dad. He was having some weird symptoms today, his feet and fingers were turning white from having no blood flow. That got better after about 30 minutes or so however his blood pressure has been really low all day. We got in contact with a nurse this afternoon and she suggested (after Doctor's approval) that my dad take his blood pressure this evening and tomorrow morning and stop taking his two blood pressure medicines. She also suggested he eat salty food and drink extra water to help with his blood pressure. After dinner my mom took his blood pressure and pulse again, the blood pressure started to rise but his pulse also rose and was 146. My mom called the nurse again and they suggested we bring him into the ER. So my mom took my dad to the ER. They found out that his heart rate is off rhythm, we are currently waiting to hear from Dr. Riveron on how he would like to proceed. Thank you for all our prayers. We know that God is working through all of this and we are beyond thankful that we brought him in and they know what is wrong! In all situations, God is good!
Hard to believe it has been a week since my last pre-surgery memory with Dr. Anderson, the anesthesiologist.
Have been slowly increasing treadmill time and speed. Four sessions a day. Did get outside on Saturday for a couple supervised walks by Kelsey and Troy.
Attended church service yesterday, but found my stamina limits in the process. Had not considered what toll the walk before, getting cleaned up, and simple transport and worship participation would take out of me (yes, got scolded)?
Tapered down on pain meds, quite honestly I never really had much pain (generous supply of vicadin to decommission).
Have enjoyed all the basketball the past several days and look forward to what lies ahead, go Badgers!
We have enjoyed the many meals prepared for our family. Want to meet some beautiful people? Check out Tammy's friends.
No planned Dr. visits this week. Kelsey is working from our home, allowed Tammy to go back this week.
Very thankful for all the prayer support from so many. Firmly believe The Lord has extended an extra measure of grace over me and our family thanks to the faithful prayers pounding the heavens in recent weeks.
Dad's first day at home went pretty well. He finally got about six hours of sleep last night. Unfortunately when he got home yesterday afternoon, he was not able to sleep until about 10pm last night. Besides the sleep things went well. He has been eating meals with us, even had a cup of coffee this morning. He has also been walking on the treadmill a few times each day to get his required amount of steps in. There have been a few minor bumps in the road. After one of his walks yesterday he started to shake again. We covered him up with blankets and that seemed to help. He did go on a six minute walk this morning and everything was fine afterwards. He woke up in quite a bit of pain this morning, but we attributed that to being two hours late on his medicine. Besides going a little stir crazy just sitting around, dad is doing great and is thankful to be home. Personally I am so thankful I can be home to be his little assistant. Thanking God today for the blessings of sleep and the comfort of our own home. Everyday we are reminded of God's continued faithfulness. To HIM be the Glory!
It's official....Dad is HOME! We are amazed and beyond thankful that all of his tests came back clear this morning. About 7am the PA came in to test his insulin level and take his temperature. Both were right where they needed to be. They then took him on a walk a little after 9. He walked a good distance, unassisted and came back to his room. There was no shaking and his hands didn't turn blue. The PA then gave him his discharge papers and Troy picked up both of my parents around 11am while Aaron and I hurried to make sure the house was spick and span for Dad. We also rearranged furniture to accommodate for dad and got him some welcome home flowers and balloons. As for today, we are asking for no visitors so that dad can get some much needed rest. If you would like to visit him in the coming days, please contact one of us kids. Thank you for all of your prayers and support!! We will keep you posted in the coming days on his recovery process. It is SO wonderful to have dad home! Thank you thank you again! We are amazed and humbled by the power of prayer. God is GOOD! To HIM be the Glory!
Mom and I came to visit dad early this morning to be here when the doctors made their rounds. We were hoping when they moved my dad to a "regular" room he would be able to get a lot of sleep, however he said he only got about 2-3 hours because his bed was making too much noise and nurses were in and out. He also mentioned that they are pumping insulin into him, that he has lost a little bit of weight (which is a good thing! This means fluid is draining), and that his temperature is border line. As for now, it doesn't look like dad will be coming home today anymore. We are hoping to get some more answers from the doctors in a little bit.
Dad was moved out of ICU tonight, he is now in a normal & quiet room. For the most part he is doing great! After he walks unassisted he would start to shake pretty bad and his hands would start to turn blue. They think this happens because his blood pressure is dropping since he is so weak. Once he lies down he is fine, but they are monitoring this. We are hoping a good rest tonight will make a huge difference. They are still talking about sending him home tomorrow. This worries us a little but we know that they will only send him home if he is good to go and we know that whatever happens is in Gods plan and He is watching over us all. Tonight we're asking for prayers for strength and a good nights rest for my dad, as well as continued peace for specifically my dad as we continue on this journey. We're also praising God for the huge improvements we were able to witness in my dad tonight; walking unassisted, eating solids, having his tubes removed, and being moved out of ICU. God is good -ALL the time!
Dad is doing great this afternoon/evening. All of his tubes are out as well as his catheter. He went on a walk about 10 minutes ago, with no assistance and even made an appearance in the waiting room to visit us kids. He looks great! There is even talk that he might go home tomorrow. Its remarkable to think that less than 36 hours ago he was going into surgery and now he is walking by himself, with no tubes, and eating solid food. The nurse mentioned to him this afternoon that they have never seen someone recover so quickly from such a major surgery. So to all you prayer warriors out there, THANK YOU! To God be the Glory!
It's been a good morning with wonderful news for my dad! The nurses told dad he was an overachiever! The PA just came in and said all tubes will be coming out this morning. He called dad a rock star! Dad smiled and said he had never been called that before! :) It's so amazing to see what a difference 24 hours is and how far my dad is coming. Thank you, thank you for all the prayers! We are so proud of my dad! I can't say it enough; God is so good!
Mom just got back from visiting dad for a little while. Dad is sitting up and eating some jello. He is able to reach and use his arms. He is pretty nauseated from the pain medicine so they are trying to control that before they get him up to walk. When the nurse's shift switches they are going to move him back to his bed. Us kids made him a playlist per his request but he said he doesn't want his iPod yet because he is still going in and out of consciousness.
Overall he's doing great and has met every goal for today. The bone is the main issue right now giving him a lone of pain, but that is to be expected. They plan to take out all of the tubes tomorrow morning.
My mom is going back to sit with him for a few more hours and then per the nurses request we will all go home to get some sleep and be back tomorrow morning at 6am to meet with the doctors to see what their plans are for dad.
Once again-thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the continued prayers, they are making this process so much more manageable knowing we are being lifted up! God Bless you all!
Dad is doing as well as expected. The breathing tube is now out and they are having him do breathing exercises already. They hope to have him up walking within the next few hours. He is in some pain. The nurses did give him some medication but told him they will not be able to take all of the pain away. The nurses also gave him a special "heart" pillow that he will be able to squeeze when he has to cough. The pillow will lay directly over his chest. The latest update he was heard is that they think he will be discharged in three days. As for now we are just giving a lot of thanks and praise to God for this successful surgery, for family and friends, and Dr. Riveron, and we continue to pray for healing and comfort for my dad. Thank you again for all of your prayers!
Dr. Riveron stopped by to give us an update on how dad's surgery went. He said that when they got in, they aorta was better than the expect and he just could not replace a healthy looking aorta. They did replace the valve, and this will require further surgery down the road in 10-15 years to replace that aorta. Now there was further calcification down into the mitro valve, so they cleaned that out. He is in recovery and we should be able to go back in about thirty minutes to visit him. Dr. Riveron said that he is already waking up, the breathing tube should be out by this afternoon or even as early as when we go back to visit.
Dr. Riveron was shocked by how many people came to visit, we have taken up the whole waiting room. We are overwhelmed and thankful for all the support of family and friends. He also ended the update by saying "God is Good!" And that He is!
When Dr. Riveron opened him up, they realized they did not have to repair his aorta has was planned. However the realized this after they had done the 9in incision that was needed to repair the aorta as well. We are beyond thankful and blessed for an amazing surgeon and staff, and most importantly for the all powerful physician that has been taking care of him since day one. God is good!
God is good!!! We just got the page that my dad is done! He is off the bypass machine and his heart is beating on his own. Waiting for him to be moved to ICU now so we can visit him. Thank you for all your prayers!!
As my dad always says: "We go Now!" We arrived this morning a little before 5am. By 5:30am both of our pastors and vicar had arrived. We were able to go back to see my dad around 6am after he was prepped for surgery. It was at this time that Pastor Ray brought us back to his room to do a devotion from Psalm 62:11-12; "Once God has spoken; twice have I heard this: that power belongs to God, and that to you, O Lord, belongs steadfast love." Pastor Ray then said a prayer, led us all in the Lords Prayer, and blessed him. After the prayer, us kids were able to give him a hug, send our love, and then we headed to the waiting room. My mom was able to stay with dad, so we are waiting for her to come back up.
Thank you all for all of your prayers and support. We are praying that God's peace surpasses our family as we start on this journey.