Wednesday: This morning Justin had his skin graft bandage changed for the first time since the graft Monday. Lets just say the dressing stuck to the open skin and in the words of Justin "my language was very colorful". He said it was so painful when they took the dressing off. They even gave him extra pain medication, but he said it didn't help. The team changed it very early that morning so only dad was with him. Fortunately, he was not in a lot of pain later that day after the wound care was completed. Justin worked with the occupational therapist in his room but did not go to physical therapy because the back of his leg was still sore from the skin graft. Wednesday was also a nice day because my aunt and uncle came to visit and are staying until Tuesday.
Thursday: Justin went down and visited the MATC gym (The main physical therapy gym). It was good for Justin to see all the guys working out and all the different stages they are in their recovery. We met with the head physical therapist and Justin was able to ask a few questions. Hopefully in a few weeks Justin will be able to start his physical therapy in the MATC. He needs to be a little bit stronger to move from inpatient therapy to the MATC. He also needs to loose all his wound vacs. He is getting there, but having the skin grafts this week set back his therapy progress, but at the same time helped to close everything up and help him move forward.
Justin also went to be fitted for his dress blues uniform for the ball next Friday! We are excited to be able to go with him, and so thankfully he is healthy enough to attend. The Commandant, his wife, and Sergeant Major came to visit today! Justin was finally awake to meet him. Last time he came to visit Justin he was in CCU and on the ventilator. They spent a long time with Justin and our family!
Friday: Justin went down to the PACU (area where patients go before and after surgery. In Justin's case he didn't have to go for surgery to have his wound vacs removed, but he needed to be sedated because its painful.) They removed the last two wound vacs from the right hand and right leg!!!! All of us are very excited, especially Justin! He feels like he is free and has no attachments. He also decided he wanted to discontinue his dilaudid IV PCA (PCA means that Justin can choose to give himself medicine if needed every 10 minutes or whatever the dose is set at). Justin decided he didn't need it anymore and wants to only take oral pain medication. He is now officially not attached to anything. He has come a long way from having multiple chest tubes, central lines, 5 wound vacs, heart leads, arterial lines, ventilators, and anything else I am forgetting. I think he is finally turning a corner in the right direction!!
His occupational therapist also made him a splint for his left hand so he can begin moving his three fingers and doing exercises on his own. This definitely give him something else to focus on during the day and also gives him control over his therapy. Another wonderful surprise that occurred today was our cousin Cody was able to visit for the weekend. Justin and Cody have not seen each other for 3 years and the last time they saw each other was boot camp. (Well Cody came to visit Justin the first week he arrived, but he doesn't remember)
Saturday: It was a nice quite day at the hospital today. There were only a couple of visitors that stopped by and we all just hung out! The guys watched a movie when we made a Target run, and we brought back lunch and all hung out. Then in the early afternoon the snow began to fall. It was really cold outside, but I guess not cold enough because the snow didn't stick to the ground. Cody and I went outside and took a picture in the snow. It was really cool for all of us to see the snow flurries out the window. Especially being from California where we never see snow unless we drive to the mountains. We were all a little jealous though that it was in the high 80s at home. Thankfully the snow has passed because Mom, Auntie Linda, and myself are heading out early tomorrow morning to the Marine Corps Marathon. We are volunteering to help and cheering on all the wounded warriors!
Well its time for me to get some sleep we have to catch the metro across the street from the hospital bright and early in the morning!
Good Night from Bethesda!
Cody and I among the snow flurries!