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To the many folks who made comments and shared their pure intended advice to my diary entry yesterday in which I requested your aid I thank you from the heart for starters this morning. This is the update to my nephew Tony`s brain surgery that I mentioned writing today to pass on to you any changes in his medical condition among other things.

Any input that you feel might shed further positive light after reading this update I swear to you that I will store it in my heart with the rest of your earlier advice.

It was only at 6 a.m. this morning that I could get my sister on the phone. She did not return back home from the hospital until close to 2 a.m., and naturally I was asleep at that time.  So she slept a mere three hours at most before my call woke her up. Now she must get ready to return to the hospital. More on this below.

Hopefully my update this morning as I now have it from her is positive. But if you are a mother you will find my take skeptical. We talked for close to an hour and a half and what she tells me of her engagement with doctors and nurses seeking specifics on Tony`s medical prognostics sounds encouraging for a mother as in this case. Below I will pass on to you what I know so far.

Yesterday I mentioned that my sister has many children with the majority all married and away from the nest where they were raised after birth. All of these now adults have circled around my sister to fortify physically around her. This appears to have strengthened her resolve to demand answers as her children stand behind at the hospital being present at the bedside of a brother.

Doctors say that Tony`s prognostic is unchanged. His condition has not improved nor has not gotten worst. He is on life support and hooked up to numerous tubes too many to count as my sister says. Whether the endotracheal plastic tube placed into his mouth and down into the entrance to his lungs causes discomfort is for "you" to advice.

Yesterday for the first time, my sister saw Tony cough. Others of her children have seen him cough prior to yesterday when my sister is not in the hospital. Doctors use a procedure to clear his throat using yet another tube device for this.

My sister tells me that Tony`s skin complexion is coming back to his normal self after having turned mostly purple due to the swelling of the brain. She swears to me that Tony can hear her when she speaks to him, by moving his eyes despite not opening them. I can only guess
that a mother is the only creditable candidate to make such a discovery as in this case.

Yesterday I had only pieces of information as to the issue of Tony`s hospital stay and about my sister`s right to have her son receive proper care without feeling threatened of having Tony kicked out onto the sidewalk. I am extra glad to inform you that my sister was put at rest and at ease on the issue of the 7 days of hospital stay that I wrote of in my prior diary. Our deep heart felt concerns about what would become of Tony if he was kicked out of the hospital in 7 days were unfounded and misunderstood.

I am amazed to learn this morning that Tony will be able to remain in the hospital for as long as it takes without my sister feeling threatened in any way. She was mentally walked through every phase of Tony`s case as it pertains to his surgery and stay at the hospital. I am pleased to inform you that Tony has top-notch medical care at the hospital where he lays unconscious connected to the modern medical devices and a nurse assigned to his bed side 24 hours a day.

The downside of all of this is what my sister found from one of the doctors. On a hospital chalk board the doctor drew a chart of Tony`s brain to explain to my sister in layman`s term what could be expected at the end of Tony`s stay in the hospital is he survives.

He will never walk again. He will never be the same man. He might even end up being a brain vegetable sort of man. My sister is a very smart woman. The doctor implied as they sometimes do in situations as this one, as he walked my sister into a situation where she would have to decide if she would think Tony wanted to continue living is such drastic manner. He told her that she was the only one alive who could allow her son to be disconnected from his life support mechanisms as he now lays. My sister believes that the doctor was suggesting that it would be better to let Tony die, instead of having to live in a situation as this or in this manner. She should consider terminating medical care and allowing him to go in peace by permitting disconnecting him from life support.

My sister is now up there in age herself. She no longer drives much and not at all at night. So this morning she was waiting for someone who would call that would be the driver to the hospital. Of all of her kids that is not a problem.

I asked her to get one of the kids to email me this morning so I could send her the link to my diary yesterday. I explained that all the comments were made specifically for her and she said that someone would write to me this morning. As I write this I have yet to get an email. But I understand all the confusion going on down there. I figured it best that she read the comments herself instead of me having to relay them to her if that is even possible based on the number.

So good news that our imaginary threat of being kicked out of the hospital for Tony was unfounded. Good news that he has the best medical care anyone could expect, including a specially assigned nurse at hit bedside at all hours of the day and night.

I simply cannot express my relief for my sister`s sake that such pressure was taken off her shoulders so to speak. The  new information she got yesterday to the aforementioned care Tony is getting is good mental tonic for her I`m sure.  I am sad though thinking, or trying to imagine what my sister will ultimately decided on the future of her son`s life. Will she want to see him as described by doctors or will she allow him to rest in peace..Only time will tell. I did tell her not to sign any documents where she takes responsibility for the cost of Tony`s surgery and hospital stay.

I will be able to be in contact with my sister by phone as long as she is in the hospital and with more ease while she is at home. If anything further develops that I may ask for advice I will post again.

Please feel free to make a comment or suggestion.

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Comment Preferences

  •  thank you for the update. (16+ / 0-)

    it's "good" to hear the hospital will continue to provide care until your sister makes her decision.

    so very hard.

    There is no Article II power which says the Executive can violate the Constitution.--@Hugh * Addington's Perpwalk: TRAILHEAD of Accountability for Bush-2 Crimes.

    by greenbird on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 09:16:30 AM PST

  •  What an awful accident, (7+ / 0-)

    so sorry to hear this Ole Texan.

    Your sister has a terrible dilemma, I wish her strength.

    Ron Reagan: "Sarah Palin's constituency are people who wear red rubber noses and bells on their shoes."

    by AnnetteK on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 09:37:41 AM PST

  •  Very sorry to hear. (9+ / 0-)

    I don't have much context.  Is there a link that explains this from the beginning?

    Boehner Just Wants Wife To Listen, Not Come Up With Alternative Debt-Reduction Ideas

    by dov12348 on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 09:44:10 AM PST

  •  What a hard decision (5+ / 0-)

    to make.  My thoughts are with your family.  Take care of each other.

    My Brothers Keeper

    by Reetz on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 09:47:39 AM PST

  •  I believe your sister will make the correct (9+ / 0-)

    decision because she has a panel of sibs, the people who know and love your nephew the most.  It may take awhile, but she will get it right based on progress, new hopes for progress, or her perception of Tony's level of suffering and anything he may have said in the past that would direct her thinking.  A very tough situation.  It is great that you are figuratively holding her hand throughout this ordeal and that she has someone on her side that doesn't need for her to maintain a stiff upper lip.  Prayers and warm thoughts for you all.

    Building a better America with activism, cooperation, ingenuity and snacks.

    by judyms9 on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 09:57:14 AM PST

  •  Continuing to send positive thoughts (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marina, greengemini, Avila, AnnetteK, Lujane

    to you and your sister and your family. I am relieved that at least Tony is getting the best of care as this situation plays out.

    One of the side effects of "better" medicine in these modern times is that accidents and illnesses that used to be fatal are now survivable but with much diminished quality of life in some cases. This puts family members or spouses in this very difficult dilemma of deciding when to withhold further care for their loved one.

    Even with the best medical advice, this is a decision for which most of us are not well prepared. If anything, it should drive more of us to have a conversation with our loved ones regarding our own wishes, and their wishes. Then everything should be codified in an advanced medical directive and durable power of attorney.

    I hope that your sister can feel all of the love and caring directed her way as a result of your powerful diaries, Ole Texan, even if she doesn't read what you've written and the many compassionate comments.

    Those who do not understand history are condemned to repeat it... in summer school.

    by cassandracarolina on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 10:15:15 AM PST

    •  Thank you cassandracarolina, (5+ / 0-)

      as always your words bring such soothing feeling no matter the situation in where you comment on my writings. I take your words today as being written by someone I admire for your compassion and understanding of the many issues we live by today.

      My baby mom would be thrilled to know what I know about the kind of person you are.

      Yes, I for one am happy to know Tony is in good hands at his time of need, being his nurses or his mother and siblings. I am specially thankful for all the good folks here on site that have come to join me in this time of hardship for my family.

      Thank you my friend.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 10:53:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  No words of advice. (7+ / 0-)

    But I wanted to comment just to let you know I read your diary.  Difficult decisions are ahead for your Baby Mom.  I am glad she has you and her children to help during this heart-breaking time.

    "Hate speech is a form of vandalism. It defaces the environment, and like a broken window, if left untended, signals to other hoodlums that the coast is clear to do more damage." -- Gregory Rodriguez

    by Naniboujou on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 10:22:03 AM PST

  •  Thanks for the update. (6+ / 0-)

    Though your sister may still have a horrendous choice to make, it's good to know that she doesn't have to make it in such a short time.  

    For all we are learning about the brain, it's still mostly a mystery.  Once the swelling is completely gone and he has time for further healing, he may surprise the docs and everyone.  If not, she can cross that bridge when she gets to it.

    Continued prayers for all affected by this tragedy.

    -7.62, -7.28 "Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly." -Langston Hughes

    by luckylizard on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 11:05:25 AM PST

    •  luckylizard your comment (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Avila, AnnetteK, hazey, luckylizard, Lujane

      is so true. I have read what some call a miracle in a brain damaged recovery. I really do not have a link but it should not surprise you because I sense you feel the same way about these mysteries you write about today.

      And it is also true that my sister has time to allow the swelling of the brain to be completely gone before she comes to the bridge where she must decide what is best for all concerned.

      Thank you for your prayers luckylizard, thanks a lot.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 11:22:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Tough situation to be in (6+ / 0-)

    A good reminder to all of us to have advance directives, and to have talked with those closest to us about what our wishes would be in such circumstances. Hopefully your nephew had some of those conversations with some of his siblings.

    "No one life is more important than another. No one voice is more valid than another. Each life is a treasure. Each voice deserves to be heard." Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse & Onomastic

    by Catte Nappe on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 11:07:16 AM PST

  •  Ole Texan (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    207wickedgood, Lujane, flumptytail

    thank you so much for the update.  very good news that your sister doesn't have to worry about the 7-days' limitation on hospital care.  being with her other children is no doubt a source of strength she needs now more than ever.  

    i don't know if they're talking in terms of Tony never walking again because of the brain injury, or there are other causes, i.e. spinal cord.  

    this has to be agony for your sister, and your entire family.  no parent should ever have to be asked to make that decision.  prayers and strength to all of you.

    •  Hello Avila (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Avila, Lujane, flumptytail

      I argued with my sister this morning on the same topic you mention in your comment -- about Tony never walking again because of the brain injury. I brought up the spinal cord which I have read has direct connection to someone getting paralyzed as a result of a freak accident such as Tony`s.

      I cannot comprehend how he landed on his head if he fell from several steps high, resulting is such tragic consequences.

      Yes, as I wrote this morning. My sister has nothing to worry about Tony being discharged anytime soon. He will be able to remain receiving very good attention medical wise as long as it takes.

      Thank you Avila

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 02:40:59 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  take care (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lujane, flumptytail

        you, too, have had a horrible, stressful experience, and i know you're hurting for your sister.  i'm still hoping there may be a change in Tony's condition.  i wish you all the best.

        •  Thank you for all (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Avila, Lujane, flumptytail

          you`ve done Avila in the sense of uplifting my spirit. It is true that I am pretty stressed out these last couple of days.

          But I`m good Avila don`t worry about me. I am writing this because I try to be as polite as possible with those who make comments to my diary and not appear to ignore any. In other words I like to have the last say.

          You too take good care Avila.

          Old men tell same old stories

          by Ole Texan on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 03:12:37 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Best wishes to you all (0+ / 0-)

    I am sorry for what your family is going through.

    I would investigate fish oil therapy.

    And, I would check into active clinical trials like this one.

    While your sister has power of attorney, I do not believe that means that she has to expend her own assets or take him into her home, just that she has the power to make his legal decisions.    I assume she has a separate medical poa for the medical decisions.

    If he is in this condition, it is best that she not agree to take him into her home.   That may open her to legal liability as his caretaker.  I live in Texas, and a friend had a similar issue with a relative with Alzheimer's, which she solved by making sure the relative did not physically live with her.    Also, if she refuses to take him home, then it falls to the hospital to find a way to get rid of him, which means that they will find a way to navigate those Texas benefits.  I believe that a person may qualify for more benefits if they are adult, and have little means, and do not live with a family member who has more financial means.  

    And, she does not have the energy, training and resources to care for him.  That is best left to the professionals, so that she can focus on providing the emotional support.

    I would consider the option of allowing a natural end to a natural life.   I have seen it done both ways, and I truly believe that allowing nature to take its course without excessive intervention is the best way, when there is little or no hope of recovery of reasonable function.   I cannot describe the horror that ensued when my family member embraced inappropriate medical intervention rather than accept the inevitable, but I would not wish it on my worst enemy.    

    My final comment is this.  There is no "right" decision.  If you make the decision with the best interests of the patient in mind, then you are making a "good" decision.    You cannot do this wrong.    

    •  DFWmom, I came (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DFWmom

      back to this diary at 7:30 a.m. today Tuesday although it is now off the board to find your powerful and encouraging message.

      I was about to call my sister but decided to check here first. I still don`t know how last night ended at the hospital. I know my sister must be half dead of tiredness and worry so I think I will let her sleep until she calls, something that she does not fail to do each day.

      I am sending your message via email to her son Ralph, who has taken the task of handling my messages. He received the copies of my two published diaries from the weekend that I emailed to him. Things seem to be that everyone down there is struggling to do their part to keep my sister sane, so I have not heard too much of how things are going actually.

      DFWmom, please know that I am very grateful for your words of wisdom with respect advancing knowledge to this horrible accident and how it can be treated -- or how my nephew could be better taken care of.

      I will certainly post any significant change for better or for worst when the time comes..

      Thank you very much for your words.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Tue Feb 26, 2013 at 05:53:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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