Nan Mustard's Recovery

This blog is a record of Erin (Nan) Mustard's recovery.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Nan's First Meal in 30 days!

Dear Friends,
Today was one of those days that in the world of recovery from a very major surgery will always be remembered. At around noon today a tray was delivered from food service. It was the first food tray to Nan's room in about a month. True it only had 2 cups of yogurt but all the same it was a huge milestone marking a point of recovery that can be seen, tasted and savored.

This morning when I arrived at about 7 or so Nan was ready to sit in the chair, after dr visits, incision dressings, pokes and prods, bags emptied, drains drained she was able to sit in the recliner. She lasted almost 2 hours before heading back to bed again. Later PT came and assisted her in walking using a cranky walker she hates but she made it quite a ways. Occupational therapy was here to help her work her hands, arms and gain strength all over. Early this morning the swallow test lady showed up while she was in the recliner and Nan passed the solid soft food test but failed the water test. As a result the lady told her to finish the applesauce. She could not believe it. Then the yogurt came for lunch and it did not last too long. This afternoon after I got back from my test ride on the T to the airport she had me find a grocery store and get some applesauce with cinnamon. She had one for dinner and saved the rest in the community frig here on the ward. She can have jello, yogurt, applesauce, pudding. She savors every bite as she eats. It is a big turning point of success and carries a big pychological lift with it.
This evening she is watching a TV program which she can now run on her own, can almost work the controls that raise and lower her bed, can use her cell phone and can begin to dig in her purse. Today I heard her on the phone asking Roxanna if a QVC box with shorts was at her house. Now when Nan talks QVC she is getting back to normal for sure.
As many of you know I am leaving early in the morning from here to take the T to the airport where I board an American Airlines flight for San Francisco. I leave Boston Logan at 8:45 and arrive at SF at around noon. Then I get my super duper $14.95 a day rental car, drive to see about 8 properties on the way home and get home about dark. My expert office team have me seeing all the properties I can over the next two days and then I see properties again on my way back to the airport on Friday to leave SF at around 1:30 and arrive back at Logan at 9:50. Then back on the T for an hour ride to the hotel and Nan's room. I think it is about as well planned as can be to use the time in a most efficent manner. I have felt God's leading through this whole going home idea since Amy suggested that it might be the time to do it. The doctors are also comfortable that Nan is stable with few pressing medical issues left at this time. Dana and Marilyn will be here on Wed. Dana on tuesday and hopefully Roxanna can be feeling better by Thursday or Friday to help watch over Nan. Roxanna called and sadly mentioned that she has come down with a bug, well bugs are best kept and killed in Conn. So she will only come when she feels better and we do understand where her heart is.
I have been counting the many blessings we have experienced today. Some time back I was wondering why us and today I began to consider, why not us. We are surrounded by many loving family and friends, we have prayer warriors across the country praying with power for Nan's recovery, we have been able to be in one of the best hospitals in the country and to have the best GIST surgeon in the world. God does know what He is doing. During the middle of the crisis I would often think of Job, he said, though He slay me yet will I trust Him. We have had to decide whether we would only trust God if the answers were the ones we wanted or if we would just trust God period.
Our brave children came and stood by their mother day after day even when she only faintly knew they were there. They helped hold the family together in a marvelous way. Sharon and Dana came and helped in so many ways, Roger and Carol came and provided wonderful times to reflect and stabilize. We have all massaged Nan's feet, legs, held her hand, watched over her as she began to recover. Roxanna and Marilyn both drove hundreds of miles day after day to be here to provide moral support, to do laundry, to go out to lunch or take walks with. And so we have gotten through it to this point. Nan is infinitely better tonight than a week ago, 2 weeks ago, 3 weeks ago and tomorrow is the 4th week anniversary of the surgery.
Tomorrow morning I will not have time to blog, I will be in the air, Nan is not quite up to blogging yet on her own but I'll try to log in later in the day after I get home.
Nan and I want to thank you for the cards, for the special $1,000 gift from someone, for the generous visa payments for hotel nights, for the round trip flight flights, for the spending money which comes in so handy and for the prayers and emails. We do not feel alone and are reminded that there are many people facing very serious issues, Judy, Rick, Carrol, others we have met here at the ICU.
So until we meet again,
thanks with great appreciation

tim and nan and dana


  • At 8:58 PM, Anonymous Bob & Carrol said…

    Hi Nan,

    Let Me reassure You that the Prayer Chain will stay firmly in tact while Tim is away for a short time. Comunicate if You can but We All will understand if You are not able to do it right now.

    Sleep restfully and as I said a bit back in the blog, "Don't eat too much "

    Love You ,

    Bob & Carrol

  • At 3:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Mom and Dad,
    Jo and I are in the Capetown Area now and it is absolutely beautiful, especially since we have read that mom is doing so well. I'm so happy that the recovery is going well. We are celebrating our 2nd anniversary today and mom's ability to eat a little bit is a perfect gift. =)
    We are really going to soak up this last week and, mom, I'll get out there again as soon as I can.
    We love you tons and are sending up prayers from Africa!
    Jason & Jo

  • At 11:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Tim and the rest of the World
    It's Amy your ICU nurse! Happy $th of JULY!!! You will all be happy to know that Nan just moved to a Private room on 7A rm 16. Yeah!! Tim she looks great today! i haven't seen her since last Friday and she looked excellent! Much more color in her face and a true smile for the first time. I asked her if she remember the ICU much and she said no, i told her that was ok, but that i was her nurse and she scared all of us at one time. It is so nice to see her really doing better, It's amazing what the human body can go through. She sure is a fighter!! Tell everyone their prayers sure worked! Also, it is nice to know that she can eat some, that sure makes her much happier. Thought you would appreciate an email since your flying back now, You still have people watching over her. I am off tomorrow but back Thursday and i will check in on her again for you. Take care all and have a Happy 4th of July!!


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