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Sunday, April 21, 2013

A Wave of Updates for Sunday, April 21st, 2013

I have a new short story coming out this week in a great new anthology. This is a story set in my Runelords universe, a thousand years before the current series--and it is the opening of a new novel that chronicles the Toth War.


Update on Ben Wolverton.

Today is April 20, and we are on the 18th day since Ben's longboard accident.

Ben had a mixed bag today. He was able to open his eyes for us, and they are looking clearer. He even tried to focus for about three seconds, which is better than he had been doing. He also squeezed our nurse's hand, my wife's hand, and my hand when asked, and he remained awake "longer than I've ever seen him," as the nurse put it.

So, the doctors decided to take him off his breathing tube. Ben has been agitated quite a bit--kicking and moving his arms--and they suspected that it made him very uncomfortable. But when they took him off of it, he had a lot of problems. He still has pneumonia and had a lot of fluid in his lungs, so he was coughing and gagging a lot, and I think that he threw up a bit, too. Apparently, the oxygen tube had irritated his windpipe, so that when it was removed, it swelled tight a bit.

So today, Ben spent the day quietly trying to learn to breathe again--which is a hard lesson to have to learn. This was really tough for me to watch, but Mary felt optimistic about the day's progress.

Tonight, after about seven, Ben fell asleep and is breathing well. He has oxygen tubes in his nose, and a mask is delivering steamy air near his mouth, which is helping him breathe easier, and it also seems to be helping his lips, which have been dry and badly chapped. He seems to be much more comfortable.

Thank you all for your suggestions today. I think that Ben won't be ready for stimulation any time soon. The doctors want us to wait for a bit, and I'm perfectly happy to give him his space. We already have an extra iPad that I bought for giving demo's of the enhanced version of NIGHTINGALE, so I think that we'll load it up with his favorite songs, movies, and games, then let Ben use it if he becomes able to.

It sounds as if we won't need a van any time soon, but we will need to begin shopping for a good place to get therapy for him. The neurosurgeon here recommended Primary Children's Medical Center in Salt Lake. But we want to check out our options pretty widely.


Update on Ben Wolverton

Today is the 19th day since Ben's longboarding accident. Ben's big accomplishment is that he is still breathing on his own after 20 hours.

Ben had a rough night last night, and seemed to be in a lot of pain. I couldn't sleep, so I went and checked on him at 5:00 this morning. They had cleaned him up nicely, along with his room, and put him back on morphine to get the pain down. So he was deeply asleep and resting well.

Along with his brain injuries, Ben has a broken pelvis and a couple of damaged vertebrae in his spine. One doctor said that the vertebrae were "crushed" while the other described them as "broken." I suspect that that's why he can't get comfortable. Those injuries are extremely painful.

Here's Ben's picture from late last night.


I wanted to give a shout-out to the folks at Scrap Apple Quilts, who have been doing a fundraiser for my son Ben. My wife told me that they apparently are still selling quilts, and that they sold six in the last week. One woman, I believe she is the owner, has a granddaughter who knows Ben, so she has donated all of her quilts that she has made over the past several years toward Ben's recovery fund, and sold six this past week, and she still has more available. That is so wonderful! So check them out if you're near Saint George!


I really wanted to go to JordanCon this year, having heard great things about it. I've been so preoccupied with my son Ben, I just realized that they're winding up today, and they are having a fundraiser for Ben. Going to see if I have time to make a donation of something for the auction. . .