Thursday, June 2, 2011

Yesterday wasn't my favorite day.

I sat down and tried to come up with a clever way to write this post. But you know what. I'm sort of at a loss for words, so you'll excuse me if I just present you with the facts, right?

Over the weekend my Dad worked in the yard like always. There were branches from the storm to clear and burn, and the regular stuff too. But he pushed himself way too hard. He became dehydrated and overly exhausted. After three days of sweating too much and doing too much in the heat and humidity he apparently had a heat stroke. He started vomiting Monday morning and didn't stop for more than 2 days. He literally could keep nothing down during that time.

He went to see Dr. S. 1st thing Wednesday morning, had blood drawn, and was told to go home, drink water and rest. A couple of hours later the doctor called and said to come back immediately because the results from the blood tests looked bad. His tone was so urgent that they dropped what they were doing and went right away.

When he got there the doctor actually met him at the door and helped him sign in, whisked him straight up stairs and hooked him up to IV fluids and all sorts of monitors. Right away they could tell by the EKG that his heart was in distress. (Excess potassium from the dehydration leads to kidney failure, which causes heart problems.) So within minutes they had him in ICU and on a dialysis machine. The vomiting finally subsided then.

Apparently there is a window of opportunity to intervene in these cases and he must have barely squeaked in. (God's providence again!) The cause seems to be a combination of dehydration, heat stroke, the continual vomiting and diabetes.

After the initial 3-hour round of dialysis, they started him on a 24-hour round. Since that time the levels of potassium and lactic acid have decreased to a "normal" level, but still have a way to go. The main concern is the function of his kidneys. They were unsure if they would fail permanently or regain function after he recovers from this incident.

I went up to the hospital to see him this morning. He looks a little better now than he did yesterday. As of noon today he was starting to make some urine so that means the kidneys have begun to function. Praise the Lord!! He's in a lot of pain, feeling nausea, and still has blurred vision but that takes time to go away I guess. He'll continue in ICU for 2 weeks, then maybe a little longer in the hospital depending on how things go. After that he'll be off work at least another month or two.

The doctor and nurses have been wonderful at St. Mary's. He is being well cared for. My Mom said his endocrinologist never left his side throughout the ordeal. This morning he came and spoke with her and explained that judging from the test results he really didn't think Dad would make it to the hospital. He had fully expected to see him go into cardiac arrest.

Some people may attribute this to Dad's strength or stamina. But I know better... I know the ONE who sustains our every heartbeat. And it's obvious that nothing can thwart HIS plan. Ultimately He knows the number of our days and He alone is in control! So I'm going to just keep on trusting Him.

What else is there to do?

Please friends, continue to lift my family up in your prayers. It's going to be a long road.

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