As a registered nurse, I was horrified to read that the assumption is out there that he cannot hear. Unless his ears were actually damaged, please, please, talk away and tell him everything that happened and is happening. It is common knowledge that sometimes it is all that patients have to hang on to in that world of semiconsciousness. I personally sat with a patient and explained what had happened and he came back during that conversation.
wrote: I am sending this to you all for Russ Evans....Dennis is a Hardrock family member and I think many here would be interested in how he's doing.
I went down to see Dennis today and wanted to provide an update on his condition.
Dave Horton's earlier account of what Dennis has been through agrees with everything I know also. I was there for two hours and Dennis was more conscious than he has been at any time since the accident - I was told this by his wife and children, Sue, Dana, and Holly. He was restless and moving all his limbs, as if trying to wake up. His eyes would open and he would seem to recognize that we were there, and then he would seem to fall back asleep briefly again. He continued to do this the whole time I was there, seeming to become more aware the longer I was there.
I don't think he ever got fully conscious while I was there, though I believe he was close. We think he cannot hear anything, so this prohibits any verbal communication with him during his moments of seeming lucidity, making it difficult to ascertain exactly how aware he is. And he cannot speak with the tubes in his throat. So all you have to go on is from looking in his eyes when he opens and blinks them. While not sure, I believe that he is aware of his family's presence there and I think he recognized that I was there too. The doctors believe his family's presence is providing him with some comfort as he tries to understand what has happened to him.
The doctors were trying to decide whether to remove the breathing tubes today or wait another day. He was breathing on his own without assistance, but they were concerned about pulling them out now and then having to put them back in later if he had problems. I left before a determination had been made.
He did not seem to be in pain, but he did seem restless. However, everyone seemed to think the fact that he was able to move like he was moving was a very good and hopeful sign. In fact, while it is still too early to predict ultimately how his recovery will go, the indicators so far are very hopeful, and there have not yet been any new reasons to not be hopeful. I hope that these positive reports continue.
Dennis' family has really appreciated the expressions of support from his friends. I felt very welcome there and they seemed to appreciate hearing my recollections of our trail running experiences together. I was very glad to be able to talk with them and they willingly shared all they knew about his recovery progress with me.
Please keep Dennis in your thoughts. After today's visit, I am very hopeful.
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When I was a child in Silverton, one of the older boys
started calling me Skunk Ears. I went to my father pouting
about it. He told me skunks have cute ears. That made
everything o.k., and the boy stopped using the name.
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