Nov 17, 2021 Latest post:
Mar 26, 2023
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Friday, November 12, 2021, David suffered a massive right sided stroke.
David was performing with Two Rivers Chorale, led by Tim Sawyer. David had just accompanied the choir for two pieces, then joined that choir for their next song. I was sitting in the way back because I needed to be able to step out if I had to cough. I was hospitalized for two weeks and was discharged on Sunday, November 7, 2021 after fighting Covid, double pneumonia and subsequent collapsed superior vena cava, due to dehydration. I was already in the hallway when David left the choir and walked out. We just happened to be in the same hallway when I saw him. I asked what was wrong and he said, "I have vertigo". I followed David to the choir room, which was where the men's dressing room was temporarily assigned. The vertigo progressed to a migraine, then a severe bilateral temporal headache and David saying, "I have an aura". I told David, I'm taking you to the ED (Emergency Department). I went and got his friend, Bruce Messer. I quickly explained to Bruce the situation and asked if he would watch David while I got the car. As I was walking back to the choir room, Bruce met me in the lobby and said that David had a seizure. I asked Bruce how he knew it was a seizure and he said, "Because his eyes rolled back". David was unresponsive neither to verbal commands nor painful stimuli, and both his pupils were fixed and dilated. I told Bruce to call 911.
The responding paramedics suggested that David be transferred to Regions Hospital.
The CT scan showed that David had a massive right sided brain bleed and a subdural bleed. The neuro team determined that David needed an emergency craniotomy, which is a removal of part of the skull to relieve the inner cranial pressure (ICP) caused by the increased fluids. The surgery was a success in that it lowered the ICP, however the actual location of the bleed still needed to be determined.
The angiogram the next day showed the location of the stroke was deep within the occipital lobe and was caused by an arteriovenous fistula (AFV). Back in 2009, David had sustained trauma to his head because of a biking accident. The neurologist believes that it's likely the fistula was formed during that incident, but with the added emotional stress of my hospitalization and possibly the normal performance stress, the fistula burst.
As of today, Wednesday, November 17, 2021, David is still unresponsive.
David had and MRI last night to determine the function of the brainstem. If there is no damage to the brainstem, David will have a tracheostomy and feeding tube placed and will be transferred to a long-term care hospital for rehabilitation. However, if there is damage, then a new plan will be made. David's dad, Larry, is a neurologist and has been able to consult with the critical care neuro team at Regions. Larry told me that the brainstem controls the wakefulness and sleep of a person.
Prayers are pouring in!! We are not without hope!
I was also reminded by David's brother-in-law, John Yoder, that David will enter eternity. Whether he enters it now or later, he will spend eternity with the Creator. That is why Jesus came to Earth, died and was resurrected, so that we can spend eternity with him!
This song came to mind as I was drafting this. I hope it brings you comfort as it has me.
In Christ Alone
In Christ alone my hope is found He is my light, my strength, my song This cornerstone, this solid ground Firm through the fiercest drought and storm What heights of love, what depths of peace When fears are stilled, when strivings cease My comforter, my all in all Here, in the love of Christ, I stand
In Christ alone, who took on flesh Fullness of God in helpless babe This gift of love and righteousness Scorned by the ones he came to save 'Til on that cross, as Jesus died The wrath of God was satisfied For every sin, on him, was laid Here, in the death of Christ, I live
There in the ground, his body lay Light of the world, by darkness, slain Then bursting forth in glorious day Up from the grave, he rose again And as he stands in victory Sin's curse has lost its grip on me For I am his and he is mine Bought with the precious blood of Christ
I will close with Psalm 46:1 (Thank you Joyce Berg for this reminder)
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
Thank you all for your prayers, well-wishes, comfort and love!!