Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday Jan. 5

Lots has happened over the past two days and I'm sure it's not over yet.
Thursday morning I got up, got ready for work and went down to Dan's room to give him some breakfast and his morning meds. He wasn't in his bed and since he hadn't been able to walk I didn't think he'd gone far. He wasn't in his bathroom - I thought not. And then it dawned on me. He was on the far side of his bed. There is about 8-10 inches on the wall side of his bed. I use that space to walk in while making his bed. There on the floor was Dan. He was smashed between the wall and his bed. Just try to imagine a 6'4" tall, big man smashed into 10 inches. He wasn't able to talk and in fact I don't remember him making any noise at all. I called for Alisha and asked her to call Bishop's house. It was about 6:00 AM but he wasn't home. His sweet wife said she'd call someone to come over and help us. It didn't take long and Brother Dean Cowley was there in the room with me and with both of us working on him, we were able to get him on the bed. Mostly, it was Dean who was able to lift him up and lay him back on the bed. Dan had really scraped up his face, right arm and feet from the stucco surface of the wall. I'm sure he had tried to get himself up and just couldn't. Even the thought of it hurts!! I knew then that we couldn't wait for the Poc. VA to call us so that we could see a Dr. I knew we needed to leave as quick as possible to get to SL.

Dean went home and made some phone calls and I got a bag packed and Dan ready to make the trip. Within 1/2 hour we had Brother Cowley, Pres. Reilly, and Brother Park at our house ready to move Dan upstairs and into the car. Before we moved him out of his room they gave him a Priesthood blessing. I can't remember right now all the things he spoke but I know the Spirit was there and we were comforted. Then they each took hold of Dan and although it wasn't easy because he wasn't really coherent (like dead weight)they got him up the stairs and into the car. We got him buckled in and came back into the house where they gave me a blessing, too. Again, I don't remember a lot of it, but I do remember hearing about angels guiding us and to enjoy their presence.

They gave me some cash for the trip and sent me on my way. I remember watching Alisha stand outside waiting for the school bus and then driving off. Dan wasn't really "with me" during most of the trip. I made a few phone calls while on driving to let family know what was happening.

We made it to the VA hospital in a little over 3 hours. Dan was very out of it most of the time. He moaned a bit off and on but he never answered me or even tried to. I think he could hear me but wasn't able to respond.

I drove right up to the front doors of the hospital and ran in. I asked someone where the Emergency room was and then I went there. They told me that someone at the front desk would get me some help if I needed it. I told them that my husband was in the car and that I couldn't get him out without help. They got a wheelchair at first and when they saw him they went back in for a gurney. Three men lifted him out and onto the gurney and then they took him in to the ER. I had to go park the car and then I ran in and they showed where they had taken Dan. I went into an new area where kind lady pointed to a curtain. I could hear them trying to talk to him, behind the curtain so I stepped in and saw 5-8 Dr's. standing around him. His shirt was off and there to things on his chest. They an IV in and were working on him. They asked me if I were his wife and then escorted me outside to where the lady was sitting. She was so kind. She stood up and gave me a big hug and held me tight while I cried. I hadn't cried until then and it was a relief to have someone hold me. She stayed close by and was there for me whenever they stepped out from behind the curtain. Her name was Meagan but I called her an angel. When things settled down a bit she left. I think perhaps she had been there just for me.

After a while they let me see him. They had to put in a breathing tube because they were afraid he have trouble breathing correctly. I was able to stay with him until they took him to the ICU. So much has happened that it's hard to remember everything.

They ran some tests and decided they needed to do a dialysis. His kidneys were not functioning and we don't know why. It could be because he wasn't getting much liquid in and they might have started to shut down because of that. Anyway, because they were shutting down, his lithium level has increased dangerously high. Normally, it should be about 1, his was 4. The dialysis would help clear that up. They thought they might have to do it a couple of times. They started about 4:00 and would run it till 1:00. However, somewhere around 7:00, he passed a clot and they had to start over. Eventually, they ran it until 5:00 this morning.

Kristi, Haini, kids and Gracie all came up to be with us. They allowed two of us in at a time. Haini gave him a wonderful Priesthood blessing and I really appreciated his words to Dan. They wanted us to leave for a bit so we went to dinner at the Chuck A' Rama on 5th South. It was good to relax for a bit with family. After that the Sugu's went home and Gracie went with me back to the hospital. They kicked us out at 10:00 so we headed to Provo. Gracie went home and I stayed the night at Kristi's.

In the morning, Sitani got up and came laid on the futon with me for a little while. We got up and went to get some groceries at WalMart. Then I came on up to the hospital. (I need to get back there now so I'll work on this more later.)

He is about the same as before. His right hand and arm are really swollen up and they are trying to keep it elevated. One of the nurses asked where I was staying and when I told her in Orem, she got on the phone and got me a room at The Kimball.
I can stay here till next Tuesday and all I have to pay is $30 for the cleaning fee. The nurse said that they do that for families of vets. in the hospital. It's a really nice place with a bedroom, walk through dinning room and a living room/kitchen combo. I can get a few groceries and have a comfortable place close to the hospital. I will miss the Sugu's but this is much closer to Dan.

Gracie came up around 8:30 and stayed with me at the hospital for an hour or so before we left to come here. She's going to stay the night with me. I love having her here.

A bit more on Dan; he's still in the coma. I kept thinking he'd wake up and all would be well. They said getting the lithium out would clear up lots of the inabilities; like talking, thinking, etc. But, he still hasn't awaken. They are attaching another IV tonight or early tomorrow morning for easier blood draws. He's had a slight fever so they're watching that. They are so good to keep him comfortable and good to me, too.

Anyway, that's what's happening now.
I know this is all jumbled up and probably doesn't make much sense, but that's about where I am right now. Maybe later I can correct it and make it sound better. Maybe later. Good night.


  1. Dear Sandy,
    Recently I came across your blog and saw that you had started this blog for Dan. I want to let you know that you and Dan have been in my prayers and my heart aches for you. I work in the Fresno Temple each Thursday morning and yesterday I put Dan's name on the prayer roll. Truly the trials we endure are part of the refining process that enables us to know the Savior, and he is there to lift our burdens and give us hope and peace.
    With all my love,
    Your cousin, Nancy

  2. Thank you Nancy! I appreciate you putting his name on the prayer roll. We trust that the Lord will do what's best for Dan. He's been through so much already.

  3. You guys, particularly Dan, is in our prayers. i wish we could be there to help. Please know that we are thinking of you and love you all.