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Sunday, April 21, 2013

Second Update on Sunday, April 21st, 2013

Update on Ben Wolverton

Today is April 21, and it has been 19 days since Ben fell off of his longboard. Today was a good day for Ben.

First, the swelling in his brain is rapidly diminishing. As you know, he had part of his skull cap removed, and today, particularly on his left side, his brain has gone from an outy to an inny. That's cool. Yesterday, the nurses turned his bed on so that it shook, and Ben's brain shook like a bowlful of Jello. That's just plain creepy.

Now, when we first talked to the neurosurgeon, he said that while Ben's brain was inflamed and swollen, he wouldn't be able to think well. But once Ben reached the point where the swelling had cleared, and the indentations turned his brain into an "inny," we would begin to see rapid improvement over the next few days. He was right. Ben did really, really well today, and we're excited to see what else he can do.

Second, Ben's fever is rapidly dropping. He has been at about 99.5 degrees Farenheit all day long, so it is just about normal. His pneumonia seems much better, and he isn't coughing as much.

Third, Mary and I came to check on him this morning, and Ben helped us exercise. This is the cool part. On Monday he helped lift his right leg for me, but Mary didn't believe that he was doing it on his own volition. Today, he alternately lifted both is left and right knees, so that he proved that he could do it. He didn't do it just once or twice, either. I suspect that he did 20 leg lifts. Then we came back tonight, and he did it some more. As his nurses said, this is the most "awake" he has ever been.

One more thing. Ben is making his first noises out of his mouth since he fell into the coma. It was part moan, part snore. So I'm going to call them "smore's." Our old arthritic dog used to make sounds kind of like it, just before she passed away.

Here is a picture of Ben without his oxygen tubes or a mask. Way to go, Ben!