Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The End is Getting Closer

The paper chain is now down to 5. We have taken two off since this photo was taken. If we run out of the chain before we go home, Ammon won't be very happy. Fortunately, if we can get all the logistical stuff done in the next two or three days, we may be able to come home by the weekend. We're crossing our fingers!
A few days ago they got Ammon into a reclining wheelchair and we went for a walk around the hospital. It wore him out, but he was very happy to be out and about. The orthotists have made a light body brace for him to wear for stability while his spine is fusing and getting stronger. They have had to make some major modifications and so we still don't have the finished product yet. They are supposed to have it finished by Wednesday because the wheelchair people will then fit Ammon's wheelchairs to the shape of his body as it is now. We cannot go home until those two projects are completed.
May Harvey picked up this Japanese headband for Ammon when she was on a flight to Japan. He thinks it's pretty cool.

Ok, this is bathtime. Ammon told me to put this on - not specifically to see his bare chest, but to see how straight his rib cage is. This is totally amazing! Even his back looks so much better although they were not able to correct two things on it. You will notice how skinny he is. He has lost about 6-7 pounds since we came here so we are feeding him a little more and giving him a little more fluid. The shower cap is actually a bath cap - pretty cool. It has shampoo, conditioner and moisture in it so they don't have to rinse it. We just massaged his scalp and then took the cap off and dried his head off. Wish it was that easy for me!

It appears that we will have to take Ammon home with oxygen, but we are hoping that he will be able to be weaned off it once he sits up more and becomes more active. We will also probably have a home health nurse come in a couple of times a day to help out with Ammon because Jim will be uanble to able to lift or transfer Ammon for a considerable amount of time. I will be going back to work full-time once Ammon is home.
He won't be going to school for some time so his aides at school will come up once or twice a week to help him with some homework and we will fill in the gaps. He will then go to school for a half day until he is able to be strong enough to handle a full day. The doctors told us not to be in a hurry because it usually takes about 3 months before they are back in school.
One thing we have realized is that Ammon is really tough. He seems to hate narcotics and refuses to have any kind of pain medication unless we insist because we are moving him or working with him. Tylenol is the strongest pain medication he has had since he got back to Shriners.
I learned something interesting today: they never use Motrin for pain medication if bone healing is involved. It interfers with the body's natural healing for any kind of bone injury or bone surgery. So now I know not to use that with Ammon when he is home.
The end is definitely in sight! Ammon is really pushing the doctors and nurses to get him home by Friday or Saturday. I am working hard on him to accept what they say and go with the flow but it's getting harder and harder. We are homesick and bored out of our minds! Get us home!


Jess and Jen said...

Ammon, I hope you get to go home this weekend since you're so bored, but I do have to say that I like it when you guys are in Salt Lake because we see you so much more. So, if you don't go home this weekend it will give us enough to come visit you again!


chelsey said...

You really are so much straighter! You're looking better and better with every picture. Home will come soon enough, but make sure you're good and better so the doctors can help as much as they can. I'm glad you'll be able to get back to your things and comfort zone though. It's always tough to be away from home that long. Almost there....hang in there for us!

Mike and Adrianne said...

I hope you get to go home this weekend. That would be awesome. Think of all the people that will come visit you. You are looking great!