I would mark down today as a good day!
Bright and early this morning, Taylor and I woke up for another surgery day. We were up at 5:15 to get ready for the PACU. Today’s surgery’s agenda consisted of cutting open Taylor’s right leg (7 inch incision), abstracting all the blood clots, scraping the walls of the leg clean, washing out the entire area, and suturing it close. Ortho came out and told me that the surgery well. I asked him how long the stitches had to be in. He told me no more than 2-3 weeks. Could he still shower with the stiches in? He just got his first taste of true cleanliness; with actual soap and water (the simple things in life). He laughed and said I know, I know, give me 3-4 days to let my work heal then he can get back to the showers. Would this inhibit Taylor getting his prosthetic legs? Ortho didn’t answer this question for me but later found out that this little hiccup of the hematoma and surgery would slow up that particular leg. They could still get the left leg going and start working on balance. Balance is going to be the first big step with the leg prosthetics. So while the right leg continues to heal he can master balance on his left leg (at least that’s my plan).
Taylor and my high school friend, Dan, came out to visit yesterday and will be here through Tuesday. He kept me company while Taylor was in surgery. I think he catch a glimpse on how many people are in and out of the room throughout the day. We would start talking and then mid-sentence someone would knock on the door. When that visitor left we would try to continue the conversation and someone else would walk on through the door. This went on and on, making it impossible for us to carrying on and finish a conversation.
Taylor ended up spending 2.5 hours in the PACU after surgery. Soon after he was finally up in the room, Taylor’s Dad got in. The room was packed with Juli, Dan, Dan Twito, Taylor, the nurse doing his thing, and myself. We all visited for a minute but could tell Taylor was fading. Dan, Juli, and Dan Twito went to grab some lunch, while Taylor and I hung out in the room. Taylor tried to sleep for a minute but then turned into chatty Kathy, just chatting me up. It was nice though because I hadn’t talked to him all day. Juli waited with him in the PACU while I did some house keeping things up in the hospital room. I made folders separating all the papers we have received from doctors/legal/research groups/important paper from organizations. I went through emails and tried to respond the copious amount of unopened messages (sorry if you are one of the messages and it is taking us a while to get back to you.) I packed up some of the things we weren’t using at the hospital to take back to the hotel and reduce clutter. I think being in such a small room with so much stuff is bringing out the claustrophobia in me.
So while Taylor was chatting off my ear, I showed him productive I had been throughout the day. Meanwhile the prosthetics assistant was texting me saying Taylor’s FIRST PROSTHETIC ARM WAS READY! I asked Taylor if he wanted to get into his chair so we could go pick up his prosthetic arm. He was torn because he really wanted his arm but his leg was killing him from the day’s surgery. He asked what time was the last he could go down to pick it up because he wanted to try to get his pain under control before he got in his chair. I asked the assistant and shop was almost closing up for them. I knew Taylor really wanted his arm for the weekend so he could start messing around with it and practicing. Without Taylor knowing I tried to persuade the prosthetic’s assistant to bring the arm to the room because he had just got out of surgery and was in pain. Plus he didn’t want to move around too much and risk the sutures being ripped out or damaged.
Sure enough they brought his first prosthetic arm up to him!!! It was so much fun watching him experiment with the arm. It is the type of prosthetic arm that hooks up to his forearm muscles. Depending on which muscle you engage and how quickly you twitch the muscle will open/close the hand or twist the hand at the wrist. During OT he has worked a little with this type of prosthetic but only artificially on a computer system. He has never actually used the hand before but still managed to: sign his name, pick up and drink out of a water bottle, feed himself a brownie, and shake my hand!! Ahhh, such a good day!! It was so awesome to see him excited! I don’t think my smile could have gotten much bigger while I was filming him doing all these different tasks. The prosthesis warned him to only work on the hand for 30 minutes at a time, otherwise his muscles would get super fatigued. He needed to pace himself so he would be ready to get after it come Monday at OT.
If you haven’t seen any of the videos that I took of Taylor feeding himself yet, you should check them out on Taylor’s Facebook page (Taylor Morris Community Support) or on YouTube at !! He did good!!