Archive | August, 2011


30 Aug

Hi everyone. Just writing to ask that if you plan on coming in and visiting, please email Ceara beforehand at so that you can come in at a time that my dad’s not busy. Also he only has energy for one or two visitors per day, so having people dropping in often is not very good when he needs to dedicate all of his energy to rehab.



Royal Wave

28 Aug

My dad is getting more and more movement in his arms! Friday we noticed that when we hold his arm up vertically, with his elbow on a table, he is able to twist his whole forearm, almost like a royal wave :). His rocking of his wrist when it’s lying flat on the table is also getting a lot stronger. And all of this without a day of physio! 

Well, sort of. The physio he’s been doing has been for his neck and shoulders. Tomorrow he will go back to the gym, and continue advancing with the movements. 

Today the nurses told us he will most likely be moving to the other side of the unit, which is for the more stable patients. There he will get a slightly bigger room, and a tv. Not too exciting for my dad, as he doesn’t even own a tv at home! At least it’s a move in the right direction. 

Today was a day of successes!

26 Aug

Today was the first day my dad got to go to the gym to begin his rehab! They got him to begin with just neck stretches and strength building. Next they got him to sit up on the floor mat, which yesterday they didn’t think he would be able to do, but he did it! He was able to sit up straight, with minimal help with balance!

After returning to his room, the physio therapist came in and told us that she believes he is ready to move to the spinal rehab floor. This is unbelievable news, considering they thought he would probably be on this unit for about a month. The physio therapist isn’t the one who makes the final decision on him moving to that floor, but it’s a start. Once they approve his transfer, he will be put on a waiting list, as the spinal rehab floor is quite full, which they think will take 1-2 weeks. 

Later on in the afternoon, my dads doctor came in to talk with him for a bit. He had not seen my dad in about a week, and was extremely pleased with his progress. First off, he couldn’t believe how loud my dad’s voice was, as usually patients with this type of injury have trouble getting power back in their voice. Secondly, he was really impressed that my dad has not had any complication,  causing him to return on a ventilator, or return to ICU. Is also agrees that my dad is probably ready to be moved to the spinal rehab floor, but it’s not his decision to make either. 

My dad was also able to go outside again today. I think he has enjoyed being outside so much the past few days, he is insisting they let him go out everyday! 

Gallery 26 Aug

Stewart’s first day in rehab!

Gallery 24 Aug

Sitting outside in the sun 🙂

24 Aug

Today was another day outside in the sun! My dad is really enjoying these little trips outside, and I think now he’s going to start demanding it everyday! It gives him some freedom, and gets him out of the same room he’s in all the time. 

Today they moved him down a couple rooms in the same unit, where it’s a lot quieter, and also has a door! I think tonight he’ll get a much better sleep.

Physio came in today, and told my dad his muscles are looking good, with no stiffness or contractions. They also said that they will soon start taking him to the gym and get him started on stretching and working on movement.

Other than that it was a pretty quiet day.

My dad wanted to thank all of you for being so patient with the visiting. My dad’s energy isn’t coming back as quickly as he’d hoped, and is still not sleeping at night. We’re both really thankful that you are all being so patient and letting him rest and heel. I will keep you posted on when he is up for visitors. Thanks 


23 Aug

Yesterday was a really busy and adventurous day. My dad didn’t have the best sleep the night before, and was really tiered in the morning. He was also feeling like a “prisoner” as he felt trapped in his bed, and was just waiting and waiting for things to happen. The nurse suggested we create a schedule for my dad, so that he knows when things are happening, and doesn’t feel so out of control. 

In the morning they tried again to ween him off of the norepinephrine (blood pressure increaser) and were successful this time! This allowed him to get in his chair, and go outside! What a great difference that made for my dad! It was 30 degrees outside yesterday, and we got to sit on a lovely balcony in the sun. We were able to stay out there for a couple hours before coming inside. Once back inside, they told us that my dad is now ready to be moved out of the icu and up to the spinal floor! 

the spinal unit is definitely a world different than icu. For starters, it’s in the old building, and definitely isn’t as nice as the icu. The room my dad got has no walls or doors, just curtains, and is also located near the nurses station so it’s really loud. Hopefully they’ll be able to find him a better room soon. 

My dad’s right wrist is still able to rock slightly, and my dad is super excited about that, and it’s giving him hope that he’ll soon be able to move that arm. 


22 Aug

Message from my dad;

You don’t come through something like this without a lot of support from friends and family. I would like to acknolwedge the following three people for their tierless 24/7 support so far. My son Andrew (akmidwinter (at), my daughter Ceara (cearamidwinter (at) and my girlfriend Julie (julie.muller (at) 

21 Aug

Message from my dad today:

“Thanks to all of you for your best wishes. I gotta say I get chocked up to see so many people send such nice messages. It makes me feel like I must be in a really hard place. And make no mistake, being paralysed is a really hard place. But today, after being airlifted to my wheel chair from my bed, I tried to get one of my hands to move, and after a huge amount of effort, got 2 mm of movement in my right hand. This tiny movement gives me hope that more movement can lie ahead. “

21 Aug

Today my dad is again off his oxygen, and doing well. He had it on overnight, as he breathes a little less deeply at night, and requires just a little assistance. For now, they will continue monitor, and only put on his oxygen if he needs it. As for the wheening off of the norepinephrine, it’s taking them a little longer, and my dad’s pressure drops just a little below where they are comfortable having it. They have lowered him to half of what the minimum dose is. He was on the minimum dose this whole week. As for sensation, he is able to feel down to the inner part of his elbow on his right arm, and just below the shoulder on the left. His toes started moving involuntarily 2 days ago, and even move when I tickle his toes. The doctors don’t seem too excited about this new develpment, and are saying that it could just be a muscle twitch. When my dad moves to the neuro/spine floor the doctors there will know more.
This afternoon my dad was trying to rotate his wrist in and out on his lap, and I was able to see some movement there! It’s very small, and easily missed, but my brother and I deffinilty saw movement more than once! The doctors again are not saying much, as I don’t think they want to get our hopes up. But the fact that he is conciously moving his hand I think is huge! It means the nerves are still connected there, and will hopefully regain a lot more movement as time goes on.
The doctors are also saying that he will most likely be moved upstairs to the neuro/spinal floor by tomorrow night.
He was up to his wheel chair again today, and was doing well sitting there for a couple hours. Hopefully we will be able to take him outside soon!
He is still really tiered, and not up for many visitors at this time. Hopefully by the end of next week he will be doing better. Let me know if anyone wants to come visit this week, and I will check with him. I think having a couple visitors a day really cheers him up, and is good for his spirits.