Thursday, July 31, 2008

July 31 - Paul Moves to Rehab

Paul was moved to the Baylor Institute of Rehabilitation today. This is great news as it means he is medically stable and can tolerate three hours of therapy sessions daily. The move seemed to come abruptly, we were just getting settled but I have been assured that rehab is where Paul needs to be right now. He still is not fully awake but continues to progress physically and, I think, is getting restless being in bed most of the day. I am very excited about his move to rehab but also very nervous. From what I hear, Paul is about to receive the workout program of his life. I have no doubt that Paul has the determination to succeed and won't give up until he has reached his full potential.

Visiting hours are until 9:00 p.m. and I would like to, again, requests that visitors come late afternoon or evenings. We are in a semi-private room right now so please take into consideration that Paul has a roommate. The facility is located directly behind Baylor Specialty Hospital at 3505 Gaston Avenue.

Once we have met with the therapists and the doctors tomorrow, I'll know more about Paul's new schedule and relay if there are better times to visit.

Thanks again for your support.

Love, Patty

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Update - Wed July 30

Sorry we haven't posted in the last couple of days. There hasn't been a whole lot new to report. Paul continues to do his daily therapies, and some days he is more responsive than others. Today he seems to be a bit more agitated than usual, which could be because of some pain or some discomfort from the food he gets through his feeding tube. He slept right through the visit from the speech therapist, even though she was tempting him with a chocolate flavored lollipop. Some days are just better than others.

They are going to remove his PICC line today which is in his left arm. PICC stands for Peripherally Inserted Central Catheter, and it can be used for giving treatments like antibiotics and intravenous fluids. Since they haven't needed to use it lately (and since it could be a potential infection risk) they decided it could come out. So one less contraption to deal with. :-)

Thanks again to all of you for your comments, love and support. It makes such a huge difference!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Update - Sunday, July 27

We've now been in the private room for over a week and it is great. Paul'stracheotomy hole is now nothing but a tiny scab and he no longer receives any kind of breathing treatment. He is now moving his right arm much more although he is tensing it up. He gets very fidgety at times and pulls at theblanket and at his gown. He keeps rearranging one around his head; it lookslike he is trying to make himself more comfortable. One of the therapists commented that this was “purposeful” movement, which is good.

His therapy now involves daily trips in a Stretchair (photo on left), an industrial-type wheelchair that allows Paul to be moved safely from the prone position in the bed to safely sitting upright. He is then taken to the workout room, where the therapists work with him. He is seated upright on a mat while one of the physical therapists holds him up from behind while another sits on a chair in front of him. At this point, he cannot hold his head up (although it is getting much stronger) so the therapist must hold it up while also holding him from behind. The goal is for him to work up his strength and to relearn to sit up.

Looking at my notes from the past week, I can see the progress he has made. It is sometimes hard to tell since I am here every day so it is nice when a visitor, who hasn’t seen him for a week or so, comes by and talks about how good he looks and all the changes.
Thanks again to everyone. I am thankful everyday to have so many people rallying around us. I can't even imagine what it might be like without allof your support.

Love, Patty

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Update July 24 - and Paul wins huge award!

Paul continues his daily physical therapy sessions and is getting stronger every day toward holding himself up while sitting. The sessions are intense and it is evident by the look on Paul's face that he is working very hard. No more lollipops this week, but the speech therapist has given him large Q-Tip swabs that are coated with lemon juice and refrigerated. He doesn't seem to enjoy these as much as the lollipop but, again, appears to like the sensation of taste and cold.

In other news, Paul's cool logo for the Ball Hogs (click here to see it) was accepted into the Communication Arts Design Annual. This is one of the highest creative awards you can get anywhere. CA is considered the bible of the creative communications industry. Congrats to Paul for his creative excellence!!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Update - Monday, July 21

Paul had a good weekend at the hospital. We feel certain that he smiled a couple of times and feel he was very engaged while looking a family photos and did seem to focus on television and the British Open, despite Greg Norman's third place finish. Buzz was at the hospital for several hours with me yesterday. Although he spent a good deal of time playing on the computer, he had a great visit with Paul, even climbing onto the bed and sitting next to him to watch Robots on TV.

I am happy for a new week to begin though as during the weekends, the therapists are not here so he doesn't get his usual exercises and therapy sessions. Right now, since Paul is not completely awake, he cannot be given food or drinks so he gets his nutrition through a feeding tube. However, because he does seem more alert, the speech therapist gave him a green apple Dum-Dum lollipop to suck on this morning and he seemed to really enjoy it. He loves apples but I am sure that, after five weeks of not tasting anything, just having a little variety was heavenly.

As always, I am very hopeful about Paul's recovery and encouraged by the small changes that take place. I am also very thankful that we both have wonderful families to support us and such a great group of friends that continue to encourage us every step of the way. Thank you!


Friday, July 18, 2008

Update - Friday, July 18

Paul was moved last night to a private room. He is now in room 201, which is great as there is much more space and privacy. We'll now be able to play music for him without having to use the headphones, sit more comfortably with him and talk a little louder, and I plan to bring Buzz up to the hospital this weekend for another visit. And, of course, between therapy sessions this morning, I'll keep the TV tuned into TNT, so Paul can watch/hear/hopefully sense the British Open. Even though Paul will be disappointed that Ernie Els probably won't make the cut, he should be interested that Greg Norman is leading the pack. Let's hope the tournament stays exciting throughout the weekend. Thank you, everyone again, for your interest and constant support.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

No More Tracheotomy!

Finally, Paul's tracheotomy was taken out yesterday. There is a now just gauze, which will stay for a few days until the hole closes up. The doctors also took him completely off oxygen so no more nasal canula (tubes in his nose). So now he looks even more like himself and has fewer tubes and things to grab at, and he's breathing completely on his own. Another small but positive step, and we are grateful for all of them.

Thanks again for all your positive thoughts, comments and prayers. You are all part of Team Jerde, and it's the best team in the world.

Love and blessings,
The Jerde and Hatfield families

Monday, July 14, 2008

Update - Monday, July 14

There's not a whole lot of new news to report. Paul is about the same at the Baylor Specialty Hospital, still breathing without the aid of his tracheotomy tube, and doing various therapies during the day. We've been giving him things to smell, like coffee, garlic and cinnamon, and sometimes he seems to respond to these favorite aromas. He's definitely never gone this long without caffeine. :-)

It's been 4 weeks now, and we really appreciate all your love and support (and your comments).

"Faith is the realization, on looking at what seems only strewn before us, that it has instead been set before us, and that it doesn't block our way, but IS our way." -Paul Greenberg

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The Waking Up Process

Thank you so much for all your prayers and support. I feel like it is important to explain what we are going through with Paul now. We have said that Paul’s eyes are open much of the day, and he is more alert, but I think it is important to explain the reality of “waking up” from a coma-like state. I have had to learn more than I ever wanted to know about this. It is nothing like the movies where a person is “sleeping” and then suddenly “wakes up” and is just the way they were before the accident. I have learned that this is a long, slow process. There are various stages. Doctors even talk about levels of consciousness, as opposed to coma. People move through these levels at their own pace. While we do see progress, and Paul’s eyes are open from time to time, we don’t really know how aware he is. There is so much unknown at this point, it is hard to describe what is happening. One constant we hear from the doctors and nurses is that no matter his levels of consciousness, we should always speak positively around him. People who have recovered from similar injuries have said that they heard and understood what people were saying around them. Therefore, we would like to keep conversation about Paul’s condition upbeat and positive. I hope this helps you understand about Paul’s condition.


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Update - Wednesday, July 9

Paul is getting settled in his new digs. He started his new regimen today, which included the therapists sitting him on the side of the bed twice, continued breathing treatments, and exercises. The staff seems to have made it their collective goal to prepare him to go to rehab, which makes me happy as it is our goal as well. As his testing and therapy sessions take place in the mornings and early afternoons, I'm asking that visitors come by between 3:00-9:00 pm. This will ensure that the focus can stay on his therapy during the day, and friends can spend quality time with Paul in the evenings. Thank you again for your continued support.

As always your comments are a great boost to us and to Paul.


Monday, July 7, 2008

Paul Moves to Baylor Specialty Hospital (room 206B)

Today, Paul was moved from Baylor Medical Center to Baylor Specialty Hospital at 3504 Swiss Avenue. It's just about 2 blocks north of where he was before (and a much better elevator situation!). Here he will be followed by a physiatrist, a physician who specializes in physical medicine and rehabilitation. Paul will receive daily care from respiratory, physical, occupational, and speech therapists. Our goal now is for Paul to continue to recover and get to a point where he can actively participate in rehab.

The doctors also capped Paul's tracheotomy tube so he is completely breathing on his own through his mouth and nose. Right now, he is sleeping and snoring away as if he were napping on the couch at home.

Visiting hours at Baylor Specialty are from 10am to 9pm and Paul is in room 206B. The first couple of days we request no visitors as he is being evaluated and will begin his new care plan. Thank you again for your support and we'll continue to keep you posted on his progress.

Love, Patty

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Update Sunday July 6

For those of you who've been to see Paul recently, you know that at times he has one or both of his eyes open to some extent. This has been happening for a few days, and while it's very encouraging to see, the doctors have let us know he is still not "awake", which we are all still hoping and praying for. It's hard to know exactly what Paul is able to see or recognize, but it has been comforting for all of us to see him make these small signs of progress.

As of today, he is still breathing partially through his tracheotomy tube, but they have removed the oxygen support, which is another positive sign. It's possible that if he continues to do well with his breathing, they will remove the trach tube completely in the next couple of days.

Today Buzz got to visit his dad for the first time. He stayed for a while, and the visit went really well. Of course Buzz is curious about every contraption in Paul's room, put a number of things in Paul's hand so he could feel stuff, and was also interested in finding goodies to eat. It was a great visit.

It's been a quiet holiday weekend and Paul is resting comfortably now. Paul's brother Jim has been in town for the weekend and giving Patty a break by taking some of the night shifts.

Thanks again to all of you for your comments and your love and support.

Love and blessings,
The Jerde and Hatfield families

Friday, July 4, 2008

Update Friday, July 4

Paul continues to progress with his recovery. He has more wakeful moments when he seems much more aware of his surroundings and his movements are increasing. Yesterday, he began putting his hand on his face, feeling his mouth and nose, and rubbing his eyes and the back of his neck. (Many of the same mannerisms we've all seen after a particularly challenging meeting with a client or bad shot on the golf course.) He also has progressed from wiggling his toes to now moving his legs and even lifting them up and often crossing them. Please continue positive thoughts and prayers for Paul throughout the weekend. His room overlooks Fair Park so I'll be watching the fireworks display here and can't wait until next year when Paul, Buzz, and I can watch them together. Have a good weekend and stay safe!


Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Update Wednesday, July 2

Paul is resting comfortably and still about the same. There are periods of time where he is more active and others where it seems as if he is sleeping/resting. We really appreciate your visits to the hospital, please be aware there may be some doctor or therapist visits that may require visitors to wait outside in the lobby. As Paul progresses there is increased focus on his rehab and exercises, which are a critical part of his recovery process. Thank you all so much for all your love and support. We couldn't do this without you.

The Jerde and Hatfield families

And here is a photo of brother-in-law Bobby and nephew Robert Paul Hatfield, born June 30, 2008, Paul's 44th birthday.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Paul's Picnic Pix!

Click here to see all the photos. Hope you enjoy them!

Update June 30 - Paul's new nephew!

Paul spent his 44th birthday in his new private room with visits from family and friends. He continues to grow stronger and make progress moving his hands and feet. Paul also became an uncle (again) today when Patty's brother, Bobby, and his wife, Karen, had a baby. Robert Paul Hatfield was born this morning at Medical City in Dallas. Please continue to pray for Paul to wake up soon so that he cane meet his new nephew, namesake, and birthday mate. Thank you again for all of your support and well wishes!