Friday, 6 January 2012

Be careful what you wish for

Today I have wonderful news; today is day 6 of Jake being more awake and alert than he has been since the accident.  It seems as though the cranioplasty has done it's thing and the hydrocephalus is back under control. 

Just to be clear, because I want to make sure I don't create a false picture, Jake is still in the very early stages of recovering from a very serious brain injury.  At this stage he is mainly awake, but awake doesn't always mean present, he is sometimes smiling and nodding and is desperately tyring to speak.  He is sort of silently mumbling and so far has managed to whisper 'yes' and 'hello' a couple of times.  He has movement in both his hands, but his co-ordination fluctuates and he has very little strength.  He can lift his head and shoulders briefly, but this exhausts him and he is not able to sit up.  He is still being fed through a tube in his stomach and is double incontinent.

But he is awake, which is wonderful.  This means that instead of just maintaining his condition the therapists can now start rehabilitating him.

A week ago if you'd told me that Jake would achieve 6 days awake I would have been whooping and cheering, because this is undoubtedly a very good thing.  But reality bites and we are starting to understand what the medical team meant when they said that the rehabilitation stage would be the hardest.

You see, my Jake is sad. The downside to his being more awake is that he is becoming more aware of what is happening and its heartbreaking to watch.  His frustration is palpable and we all feel so completely helpless.

As Dad reminded me last night, this awareness and sadness is just another stage of the journey that Jake needs to experience to rehabilitate and, as hard as it is, every recovering brain injury patient must make this journey.

So, hope goes up but I think we may be in for a bumpy ride folks.

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