- Still in NTICU in Springfield.
- He has been given a swallow test the last few days which hasn't gone well because of the remaining swelling in his vocal cords. Passing this test would mean he can have liquids by mouth.
- He has been having some chest pains but all blood work and scans are coming back normal, so no signs of heart attack or stroke at this point.
- Has a staph infection in his lungs and is on antibiotics to get rid of it. BAD news!
- More talk of surgery to possible fuse his vertebra in his neck for more stability. His bruise is at C-4 and the two breaks are at C-7 and T-1. In an X-Ray the other day they determined that C-5 and C-6 have moved.
- Has been able to be off of the ventilator completely with just "flow by", which is oxygen and humidity. His diaphragm is getting a great work out. He still feels as if he is struggling a bit to breath, but all of his levels look fine. They are still putting him back on the vent at night to help him rest better.
- Still cannot have liquids by mouth other than sponged water.
- The doctor explained to Linda this week that he didn't expect Bill to be alive once he arrived in the ambulance. This injury should have killed him right away, but his heart is keeping him going and the only reason he is here is because of the strength of his heart.
- His mood is up and down. Some very, very sweet and thoughtful person sent him some balloons and candy bars this week, which made his day. You know who you are and thank you so very much again!!! He can't have the candy yet, but he is motivated to get to the point where he can.
- His birthday is Saturday. We are going to take the boys down. They most likely won't get to see him, but they can at least see Linda, which she needs.
How is Linda (Dale's mom)?
Up and down as well. We would have loved to give her the news that she has been waiting for that her granddaughter is on the way, but another boy for her. Her mom isn't doing too well. She has been in the hospital once since all of this happened with Bill. Linda has been there for him all the time living out of a hotel room. We hate that she is going through all of this, but she is a trooper and much stronger than she sometimes seems.
Wyatt talked to her the other day on the phone. She hasn't talked to him since she went to Springfield. Wyatt told her unprompted and all that he prays for Grandpa Bill every night and hopes he gets to feeling better. Which he really does and so does Waylon (he requires some help though). I am so proud of this kid and the conversation he held with her, I can't even TELL you how much. I almost cried listening to him. What a kind and thoughtful heart he has (sometimes).
You guys, I thought I loved this guy a lot, but I know even more so now. He is handling this in such a healthy and inspirational way. I am so proud of the man he is and the example my 3 BOYS are getting in a man. This hurts Dale like no other, don't get me wrong. He LOVES his dad! They don't exchange the words "I love you" but everything they do together displays how much they actually do love each other. In a way he has lost a huge part of his dad. They have spent countless hours together working on things, big manly things, things I wouldn't touch with a 10 foot pole or have the slightest desire to.
They have spent so much time working on Bill's truck together it isn't funny. And Dale enjoys that so much, that is gone for now. On the weekends if nothing big is going on you can find Dale and his dad in that nasty dirty shop working on truck things. I use to get mad because I wanted that time to be spent with me and didn't understand why in the world he would choose that over me. Then I realized that is what they do and that is what they love and we don't know how long they will get to do it together. THANK GOD I realized that several years ago!
Dale is talking about it, all of it. He talks about how he feels, what he is scared of, how what someone said really touched him, etc. He even cries when he needs to cry. Is he angry? You betcha! It is tearing him up inside, but he is handling it and realizing God is in control. Not to say he won't have a few huge questions once he enters those gates.
I am so proud of him, and so in love with him, and so excited and happy that he is what is holding our family together and showing our boys the way with a little help from above of course.
Thank you all so much for your concern, for your emails, phone calls, packages, meals fixed, texts, facebook messages, twitter messages, comments on my blog, etc. All of it, THANK YOU! Our journey through getting this man back on his feet (literally) is far from over. Please, please, please continue to pray for Bill and all the rest of us to keep our spirits and our hope alive because when it gets hard the easy thing for us to do is to give up, let down our faith, and start to feel sorry for ourselves. Thank you for being there to pick us up now and in the future!