Monday, March 12, 2012


Well Matt is in surgery right now. They started about 15 minutes ago. They came to me just before the took him and asked me if they could change the plan a little. They were going to go in and try the ventriculostomy and if it didn't look like it would work they were going to put a shunt in right there. Well they decided that if the ventriculostomy did not work that they wanted to put in an external ventricular drain to measure his pressures over a couple of days in order to know better which shunt to use. The doctor was explaining it all but what he didn't realize is that I am all too familiar with what they are talking about, he's had the same thing before and we have pictures of it. I have spent the last 2 years trying to forget the bag of cerebral spinal fluid that was attached to his head. All of this means that he may be looking at another surgery in a couple of days. This is exactly what I didn't want but they said it would reduce the risk of another subarachnoid hemhorage or stroke. So I agreed to it. It was so weird that they were asking me. Paul and Vicki were standing there with me and so I consulted with them to make sure we were all on board. Its hard for me to know that ultimately the decision is mine when it comes to all of this. How did I become this adult who has to make these decisions? I am anxiously awaiting the results of this surgery and praying that it will work and he can begin to recover without a shunt. I just want him on his way to feeling better so that I can take him home. I just want our little family back together in one place so that we can begin to rebuild.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Day One, Friday

Today was probably one of the hardest days of my life and I know it was the hardest day of Matt's life. I will say however that reflecting on the events of today it is easy to see how the Lord guided us through every step and every decision we made and left my husband here on earth with me. We are not out of the woods, he has not woken up completely but there is neurological function where before the was none. It has been a long hard day but I will start at the beginning and try to tell you everything that happened.
Matt woke up to go to work this morning and was having a hard time. He was pretty grumpy which is rare for him. He woke me up to say goodbye and I asked him to stay home. We have not had a lot of time together lately and I missed him. Being the faithful employee that he is, he said he could not stay home and headed out the door to work. Being the lazy bed head that I am, I was not out of bed yet. About 10 seconds after Matt left his father Paul had a prompting from the holy ghost to look out the window and when he did he found Matt lying on the ground. He ran out and Matt was just coming around, he had lost consciousness. Paul helped him inside and the kids alerted me that he had fallen. I rushed downstairs and he was on the couch with an ice pack on his forehead where he had hit.
We decided that we better have the shunt evaluated so we got kids off to school and the neighbors and headed for Tooele hospital. On the way he became very nauseated and began vomiting. When we got there he could not walk into the hospital so I grabbed a wheel chair and rushed him inside. I checked him in and we headed to a room in the ER. When we tried to help him out of the chair and into the bed I noticed he could not open his left eye. Honestly I thought he was faking at first just to freak me out, he loves to do that. He tried to talk to the nurse and I but his speech was very slurred and the left side of his face was drooping. It was then that he lost control of his bladder and we knew something was seriously wrong. He was having a stroke right in front of me. They wheeled him to the trauma room and things went from bad to worse. He could no longer breath on his own and so they began cutting off his clothes and intubating him. I was watching from the corner in the room. He was foaming from his mouth and began posturing (worse than a seizure, nurse said you don't usually come back from that) on his right side. They then took him to CT where they found a very large 3 inch hematoma. From there they got him ready and loaded into the air-med helicopter.
My inlaws had come to the hospital and drove me up to the U of U. When I got here he was already in surgery. The trauma surgeon came out to talk to me. He said that there was no neuro function but they did not know if that was from the medication or if he would regain neuro function. We were taken to the surgery waiting room where we stayed for five and a half hours while they worked on him. At one point they came out to tell us they were trying to decide whether to keep the part of the skull they had removed or use a plate. After it was all over the surgeon came to speak with us. He said that Matt's trauma was very severe. He said that when he came in he was on step above brain dead. He explained that they were able to save the bone and that it was an artery that had burst. Matt was a very lucky man according to the surgeon but I prefer blessed :)
From there it was another 3 hours until I could see him. When I did see him he was still intubated and could not open his eyes but he squeezed my hand with his good hand. He was restrained so as not to pull out the breathing tube. They were also using a tube to empty his stomach and he did not like that at all. He didn't know where he was and I can imagine that was very frustrating to him. The night went well and at 6 am his stats were well enough to remove the ventilator. When they took it out they asked him if he knew who I was and he said " that's my wife, I want her...I always want her." I have never been more happy to hear his voice. My heart took a picture.