Sunday, Mother’s Day, was a wonderful day. We went to church and then to my parent’s house to tell my mom ‘Happy Mother’s Day’. After that, we went to the hospital to visit Stephen. Stephen was feeling fantastic. We all went for a walk outside and enjoyed the beautiful day.
The doctors surprised us and told us that they would send him home the next day. That was great news but we weren’t entirely ready for him at home yet…
Monday, as per instructions from the doctor, we cleaned the house, wiped down all the surfaces and blinds, had the carpets cleaned, washed all the bedding and towels and everything else in sight. About noon Sarah called us to let us know that he had started throwing up and they weren’t going to let him go home anymore. We just kept the cleaning party going so that we would be ready whenever he came home. Thanks to Jill, Josh, Jeff, Merry-Maids, and Chem Clean carpet service we got it all done.
Stephen had a really bad head ache and was nauseated. They did a CAT scan on his head but couldn’t see anything abnormal. Then they gave him some fluids and he started to feel better. He felt good on Tuesday and so Wednesday was the day set for him to come home. He continued to feel well and so he arrived home Wednesday evening. It was great to have him home. Everyone was really excited. Stephen was happy to be back in his own bed. It was so great to have everyone there to gather around in Stephen’s bedroom and have family prayer together again.
That night he didn’t sleep well. He was feeling sick and restless and threw up during the night. Which brings us to today….This morning I went to work and Jeff was working from home to be with Stephen. About 11:15 Stephen started to feel the right side of his mouth go numb. Then, his right arm and right leg went numb and weak. When Jeff talked to him, he was having a hard time putting words together to respond. Jeff tried to get him to stand up but his right leg couldn’t bear any weight. Knowing that these are the signs of a stroke, Jeff called 911 and got an ambulance there as fast as he could. They arrived quickly and took great care of him. Thanks Lone Peak EMTs! He was taken in the ambulance to IMC at 53rd south. Stephen can add riding in an ambulance with sirens and lights flashing to his list of experiences now. Stephen continued to have problems thinking and expressing himself off and on. The numbness went away after about 30 minutes. I left work and met them at the emergency room at IMC. There they did a few tests, took an MRI of his brain and checked for bleeding in his digestive system. My dad came over and helped Jeff give Stephen a blessing. Stephen was reminded to not give up fighting but to realize that he is making progress and the end of his treatment is in sight. He was also reminded that many, many people love him and are praying for him and that he can receive strength and power from this. It gave us a lot of peace. The tests didn’t show anything abnormal. Thankfully the doctor concluded that he hadn’t had a stroke or an aneurism. The next test the doctors want to do is a lumbar puncture to get a sample of spinal fluid and check for infections in it. His platelets are really low right now so it would be too high a risk of bleeding to do the procedure without giving him platelets first. Since he didn’t need a neurologic specialist, the doctors transferred him up to LDS hospital where he could be taken care of by the BMT clinic. His same room was waiting for him when he arrived. East 850. Stephen feels right at home here. It’s nice to be where everyone is trained to take care of an immune compromised patient. Besides that, he is on a first name basis with everyone here. He has snuggled right into bed and is waiting for his platelets to arrive. He is feeling better than he was but not great. He has lost a lot of weight and muscle the last couple of weeks. The bed has scales on it. Boy am I glad I’m not laying in it! With his bedding and all he is only 138 now. 136 when he steps on the scales. His normal weight is 165. Once he is feeling better that will be his job – EAT and EAT!
Today is Jeff’s 49th birthday. Happy Birthday Jeff! It is definately a birthday that he won’t forget. Stephen’s birthday present to Jeff was to remind him what is really important in life. As Jeff helped load Stephen into the ambulance he was reminded how precious life is and how priceless our family relationships are. Give your kids and your spouse a hug! I’m sleeping at the hosptial with Stephen tonight. I gave him a big hug and told him it was from me and from all the people who love him. Goodnight.