Sunday, September 18, 2005

Very bad but stable

Denise is very bad off, but stable. There were so many procedures done today, I can't begin to remember remember them all. At one point this morning, the doctor said that her ejection fraction (how much blood can pump out of the heart) is so low that if her heart stopped, he didn't know if it could get going again. This flashed through my head: Last night there was a "code blue" for another patient as I was leaving the CCU. As I walked by, I saw people trying chest compressions on him. I found out later that night that he passed away, in spite of everyone's best efforts (the best effort being the norm in the CCU). I really don't want to leave Denise. But on the other hand, though I'm in no way squeamish, I hope I'm never in a position to see anyone working on Denise like that. Anyway, I told the doctor to do his best if the heart stopped, that we know everyone's been doing everything they can, and Denise is a fighter and she'll do her part to keep going. He & the team have been calling shots in such a way that Denise has come through some pretty bad scrapes already. After having turned the corner in a few ways, I feel like we're back at square one again.
I'm still trying to talk to Denise without cracking, telling her that she's come through a lot so far as a result of the medical team & what's available to them, her strength to fight this, and of course a whole lot of prayer. It's getting really hard to see her condition and find the positives to point out so she doesn't lose heart. I acknowledged that she's scared & admitted that lots of us have been scared sometimes. I've been avoiding it, but finally told her that even if she does die, our faith gives us hope for life beyond our time on earth. I told her that I wasn't strong enough to pick a woman to marry that didn't share the same faith I do; I couldn't stand the thought of life on earth with her being all there is, and when we're both done here, there's still heaven. I hope I didn't stress her, and I hope I didn't say the wrong things. But there was no way I could ignore that she's scared. Now I was a big chicken about all this, talking to her while she was too tired to open her eyes & look at me. By the way, she did move her arms & legs during the procedures, and she has move a little bit late this afternoon. She's opened her eyes a couple times.
Xigris has been started again to try to pull her out of sepsis. There are significant risks involved, as she also has DIC (simplified: bleeding/clotting problems) right now, and the Xigris combined with the bleeding makes for pretty bad news. But the alternative is to let the sepsis continue, shutting down her organs until she dies. So as the doctor put it, it's been nothing but full-court press this whole time, and so it continues. We don't want any bleeding problems to complicate things.
There are so many other things wrong, I can't remember them all. Fortunately, my R.N. aunt that's been explaining most of these things to me is visiting and she's going to talk to the doctors to find out what all's transpired since last night. That'll be in a future post. For that matter, my folks and a bunch of friends have rallied around us late last night & all day today.
Things that have gone positively:
The dialysis went well and lowered the demand on her breathing, so her breathing rate is approaching normal. The fact that she's "well" enough to tolerate dialysis is a good. I assume that since they can perform dialysis, there may not be the problem of her lungs filling with fluid that we had a few weeks ago. Her massive dose of blood pressure medicine was lowered about 40% and her blood pressure was still acceptable. I hope my understanding of that is correct. We'd like to see many more things go in a good direction.

Tonight I told Denise that we didn't need any excitement. I want the nurse to have a nice uneventful evening. Wouldn't that be nice if all the other nurses got jealous of Denise's nurse because there was nothing for her to do but sit & watch Denise get a little bit better tonight?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil, I feel so strongly that you said the perfect things to Denise, you were speaking from your heart and Jesus was your translater.(Maybe even visa-versa) Denise can question many things but your love and dedication to her are not on that list. Remember, she chose you for her life partner and no matter what your journey together brings, the Lord already knows your destination!We love the four of you dearly and are standing in the gap for you! Try to get some sleep my friend, God's got your back! We love you, Di Evans and Family

September 18, 2005 11:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Phil and Denise,

I think about you all often but don't know what to say online. Just know that I am sending the warmest of my thoughts and blessings your way, every day.

xoxox Erika S.

September 19, 2005 7:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please know that what you said to Denise was perfect, and that God is definitely speaking through you to her heart. She is so fortunate to have so much love around her all the time, and hopefully you can feel the love coming to you and your family through the constant prayer being given to you. Please, Jesus, continue to encourage Phil and Denise as they go through this rough time. Continue to heal Denise and guide the staff at Methodist Hospital to do what is needed to heal her and bring her home to her family.
God Bless you,

September 19, 2005 8:21 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil, I too have no doubt that you said exactly what needed to be said. Part of Denise's fear could be she is concerned about you and how you'll be if the Lord should take her home. Let us also mention there are people in our family and friends of ours that have never met you or Denise yet they've been so touched and moved by the strength you've had and the blog you post. It's just incredible how your Strenth, Dedication & Love for Denise and the Lord flows out and helps so many others. Our prayers continue...God is a God of Miracles! In the Love of Jesus, John & Pam of Coalinga

September 19, 2005 8:24 AM  
Blogger Call Me Grandma said...

Praying a little harder for Denise today. Praying for a total and complete healing. May God Bless you with all that you need in this trying time.

September 19, 2005 11:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Our God is faithful and your courage shows in your writing is evidence of the Lord's strenth and blessing. What you said to your wife was perfect. I shared with my cousin the concept of perfect healing. This only occurs when we stand in the presence of our Lord.

You continue to share your heart and show us all God's love, as you continue on this journey.

Continuing to pray for all your family and close friends and the staff at Arcadia Methodist.
Tom Leslie, Arcadia

September 19, 2005 12:41 PM  
Anonymous Brigid said...

To be Honest i really don't know what to say. Denise is a very strong woman as we have already seen in the past. I pray to god everynight that she gets better and that she will pull thru this. Phil you are a very good support system for Denise and her family. You are a great husband and father and I am glad to know that Denise has you. We wish that we could be there for you guys all the time. Tell everyone that i love them and Denise to stay strong and if you can give her a kiss for me. It has been a long time since i have seen her and i wish i could now, but i know that is not possible. Like i said when this all started,"The women in our family are very strong." We could be super hero's we are so strong. Denise I love you stay strong. Phil i am honored that you are a part of our family, stay strong and full of hope.

September 19, 2005 1:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Phil- Continually praying...ALL of us. She is tough and has a lot to live for. I know she is fghting!
France & family

September 19, 2005 4:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Phil
I just wanted to let you know that I am praying for denise and you Family. Denise is in Gods hands and He is watching over her. Gods presence is surrounding her and Gods loving arms are wrapped around her. I will continue to pray for denise and you. I pray that God will strenghten you and that you will feel the lords presence surrounding you. You and your family are in the lords hands and precious in Gods sight. God bless you
In Christ Shannon

September 19, 2005 10:43 PM  

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