Slow and Steady

When I arrived this morning it looked like Janet had been trying to create another Code White. She had removed a pillow case and tossed the pillow on the floor, one of her booties was up near her head, one strap for her splint was missing, her blankets were everywhere except on her and she did not look happy. The girls came in and cleaned her up and dressed her and as has been the pattern lately, she fell asleep.

Just before ten she started to stir and I got a little stretching in before Tom arrived. We practiced with the sliding board which Janet doesn’t seem to like too much at all. Afterwards we took a spin around the ward in the wheelchair. Janet did fine but was not too alert but she maintained a slow and steady pace all the way around. While we were doing that, Chantelle joined us to say she has a bunch of info on equipment for the house and informed me that the team wants to meet to discuss in detail what bringing Janet home would look like. I will try and talk to her more this afternoon.

Dr. Jones came in to talk to me and started by apologizing that he had much less to say than he thought he would. In summary;
– Janet’s bleed was severe and affected her whole brain. Old news.
– There are parts of the brain permanently damaged. Old news. He tempered this with the common line, “the brain is an amazing thing we don’t fully understand and it can rewire itself.” He was not willing to try and guess what the likely permanent damage is.
-Janet has shown some progress but the critical level to reach is one where she is initiating behaviors like reaching out for a cup of water. He described that as a complex behavior that Janet hasn’t demonstrated yet. I asked about her reaching for the end rail of the bed to pull her wheelchair forward. He was happy to here that and was unaware she had done so.

Based on our conversation I am concerned that Janet has not been properly or fairly assessed. I know there was serious damage done and I’m not denying the possibility that this is as much as Janet could recover. I am with her more than anyone, even the nurses, and maybe I’m seeing things that are going unreported or unobserved by anyone else. I will ask for that team meeting and see if I can get anywhere on that angle. The last time Dr. McCann saw her was for a few minutes when she was sleeping, same with the psychiatrist. It’s not sitting well with me. Dr. Jones is a good guy and he can only go by what’s in the chart. I’m thinking maybe the chart is incomplete.

Praying for a responsive time with Janet this afternoon and wisdom as I filter the information being provided.

One comment

  1. “Maybe the chart is incomplete” is a very gentle understatement. Larry….I am sure you are the person with the most awareness of Janet’s abilities and vision for potential improvements in function. Hospital staff writing things in charts is a very incomplete picture of Janet.

    Keep up the outstanding advocacy!

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