Journal

Journal entry by Steve Gregoire

Just a quick update, 
    This is the day we have been praying and patiently waiting for!!! October 22 will be the last day of therapy from the manor, at this time we will be transferring her to her home. Home healthcare will be required in this transition time for however long they feel is needed. I don’t know the exact date we will be home, could be the the 23, some details we need to work out yet, more updates to come!!

   Gail continues to improve and get stronger, as a result of the swallow study last week she was upgraded to 3 which means more options with food. The meats will not be chopped but still cut to small bites, it was very interesting watching the ex-rays. I can understand and be aware of potential issues. 
     She had pizza for the first time last night!!! Yummm!!



     Again, thank you for all of your support!! 🙏🙏❤️❤️!!!
                      God’s will!!
  
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Journal entry by Steve Gregoire

Purple Nation and Prayer Warriors

   First, I want to say thank you again and again for all the support you have gifted us with, whatever form that is in!!!! When they talk about being the hands and feet of God, that means you all and whoever comes in our path along this journey we are on, we have been so blessed!!! 
  
  We are getting so close!!! Last week Gail got her wheelchair taken away from her which means she needs to walk wherever she goes, and she does, with her walker and a little guidance from a nurse (more milestones) I’m thinking in another week or so she will be walking without the guidance, just her walker. It’s been amazing to watch!!
  
  Today I brought her to church for the first time, we did use a wheelchair just to make a little easier for her,  little overwhelming for her but she loved it all the same. Also brought her home for the afternoon for the first time, that made her feel really good, and we also had a home assessment done for when Gail transfers home. She did really well, was able to do all the things that are required to do just not on an independent basis so that’s what therapy will be working on moving forward is her independence. There are a few things I need to do or have in place to make things better for her to be successful at home, she will probably need some therapy yet when she gets home but that could change in the next month. So that’s what we are aiming for, for her transfer home by the end of October 👏👏🙏🙏🙏!! This is exciting and scary all at the same time!! Praise and prayer items!!

  This week on Thursday she goes in for another swallow study, I have learned that there are 4 levels in that ability to swallow properly so the average person is at 4, Gail is at 2. I am going to be their so I can watch and better understand that process
 

 Gail’s sister Mary will be here for another visit this weekend, looking forward to that, prayers for safe travel. The next update just may come from her again!!

                  Thank you again!!! Love you all❤️❤️❤️!!    Do you believe in Miracles???!!!!
            God’s will!!!

Journal entry by Steve Gregoire

Well hello purple nation and prayer warriors, wow it’s been about another month since our last update, Gail continues to show progress and I believe it is most noticeable in her speech. She still struggles with having the right words when she uses her own thought process which includes pointing things out in her room. She sometimes gets frustrated when she can’t find the right word but always has a good attitude about it praise God for that!.
 She is working hard in her ot/pt, slowly getting stronger., progressing nicely in her transfers from her bed to walking behind a walker, still with some help from the nurses.
they have also been working on transferring to a car which is pretty exciting!!
   
There has been some concern about Gail’s mental state, she has been spending a lot of time sleeping during the day or when ever she can and refusing some of the activities they have for her. We feel she may be going through a stage of depression which is understandable in these circumstances, I would like for her not to have to be on any medication for this if possible Or she is just not getting good quality sleep at night. This is definitely a priority prayer item, we also know how much of a people person she is so if at all possible please visit and if she is sleeping, wake her up!! 


On to some really fun fun news and it includes KARE 11 news at that!! Last night before the Lakeview Football game with Minneota I took Gail to the football field, first time riding in a car!! We met with Kare11 news reporters, they were doing a story with Gail and our football team. When the team arrived they presented a signed jersey to her and then offered hugs  cause Gail is a hugger ya know!! Then chanted the Laker song, Gail does cry once in a while! and she did!! What an amazing night, just what she needs to help lift her spirits and get her out of this rut she is in, it was her first time out besides doctors appointments, praise God everything went well, we left at halftime that was long enough for her.


  We still have a long ways to go so still need prayers because I know that works!!! Gail’s goal is to be home by Christmas, we will keep you posted!!  She has also asked about going to church! so I’m thinking about making that happen sometime later this month, that will be so awesome!!


 Oh I almost forgot, we go to marshall and get the feeding tube peg removed on Monday!! Yay!!! Huge Praises!!! just one more big step!!!


       Later.      God’s will be done!!!

Journal entry by Mary and Kurt Krenik

“We proclaim how great You are and tell of the wonderful things You have done.”  Psalm 75:1


Day 165: Dear Friends and Family,

It was my heart’s delight to spend the last few days with Gail.  She is doing so well and is in such a lovely spot at the Minneota Manor. I wanted to pass along some of my thoughts and observations from the past days:


Typical Day

Breakfast is between 8:00 and 9:00. Lunch is between 12:00 and 1:00, Supper is usually around 6. Her therapy sessions are approximately 1 hour each. She continues to have OT and PT everyday.  Speech Therapy is 3 times per week. She rests in the afternoon and sometimes in the morning as well, if her therapy schedule allows it. If she doesn’t have time to get in and out of bed before her next appointment, she will “power nap” in her wheelchair.


Therapy Goals

Her goals in PT are bed mobility--moving from lying down to sitting on the edge of the bed, moving from sitting to standing and walking with a platform walker.  Her goals in OT are upper body strengthening and skills of daily life like getting dressed. In speech therapy she works on swallowing and her “thinking” skills…  Her speech therapist wants everyone to know that: “When you are visiting Gail, if she is having trouble finding a word: 1) Give her time  2) ask her to describe it  3) ask her to point to it and 4) if she still can’t find the word, offer cues or suggestions based on what the topic of conversation is.”


Best time to visit

Any time !!  There is a GREEN LIGHT on visiting now.  This truly fills her cup and encourages her in her hard work of therapy. If you come and she is not in her room, (that’s actually a good thing) you can track her down and join her / encourage her wherever she is. She has a white board with her schedule in her room that may give you a clue.  She loves to go outside. Any of The Manor staff can assist you to take Gail to the garden area where the kittens are. You don’t have to stay long-- 15-30 minutes would be one suggestion. If the TV is on, I like to turn that off so she can hear and focus better. When you leave her, make sure her call light is within reach.  


To do and not to do

For Gail’s safety (preventing choking or aspiration), she uses a special cup so she can keep her chin down for most effective swallowing. (NO STRAWS)  Her drinks are thickened, no regular water. Her food is soft and ground. If you bring her treats or things to eat -- please check with The Manor staff. One joy is that things taste good to Gail and she has a good appetite. She may not be able to give you an accurate answer on what she can and can’t have, so ask staff.


She has earrings, perfume and lip gloss in her room--offer her those.

She is often cold, offer her a vest, sweatshirt of blanket.

Take her out of her room.  She can push her wheelchair--she uses her feet to propel too.   ….or you can push her.

Check and fill her essential oil diffuser, there are instructions on the stand.

She has a variety of “therapy things” to do in her room, encourage those  ie squeezing sponges, playing the card game “Go Fish” and flash cards for “naming things/people”

See if she will sing with you

Offer a gentle shoulder massage and encourage her good posture.


Recent Eye Appointment

Gail may be wearing an eye patch to cover her right eye the next time you see her.  We found out she is seeing double and the patch is to help with that. It is hard for her to read...she tries.  You may want to assist her if she has mail or if you bring a card.

So many wonderful things and we give God all the glory! Thank you for your love and support.
Mary

Journal entry by Steve Gregoire

Hey there purple nation, so it’s been about a month since my last update and maybe that’s a little too long for some,   I apologize for that! I am so blessed to have her so close to home. It’s also nice for her to get visitors, she really likes that. The best time to visit is later in the afternoon. She has had ot/pt 5 days a week and speech therapy 3days a week, her therapists are very optimistic about her recovery, I have been getting weekly updates on what she has been doing in her therapy time. They have had her standing with help by a machine, not really focusing on her walking abilities yet, more focus is on her arms and legs strength and her core strength, balance. Working on transferring from bed to wheelchair without aid of a mechanical lift, that would be huge!! Huge praises for the progress so far!! Last Friday we had an appointment with Dr Kennedy in StCloud, he seems very pleased with her progress so far, he didn’t have any concerns and we need to just stay focused on at least a one year recovery time and then we will kind of know more of what her life will be like. He wants to see her again in 3mnths, to me that’s a good thing!! He also made a prediction that Gail will be walking with the help of a walker at least, the next time he sees her. Dr Kennedy had a little grin on his face the whole time! To me that speaks volumes!! Personally I do not see her stopping progress any time soon!!  Clearly this has been God’s will for her!!! Glory be!! Gail has one therapist who specializes with stroke patients and she has told me that she thinks Gail will walk out of the manor one day, so I’m holdin her to it!! Hah! Gail’s short term memory is getting better also. So lots of good stuff happening!! God is so good!!!

I realized that I can post photos on this site so hopefully next time I will get that figured out how that is done so the people that aren’t able to visit can see her progress.
I promise it won’t be a month!

    
           Love you all!!! Keep praying!!    God’s will be done!!!

                                                                   Steve
         


 

Journal entry by Steve Gregoire

Hello prayer warriors and purple nation supporters     
     It is such a blessing to have Gail so close to home, it’s only a 20min drive to her new temporary home. The bad part about that is it makes it harder to recognize the progress which is a little different than not seeing her for a week or two. I do know there is still plenty of progress, she really likes it in Minneota. She has been really busy with her pt and ot therapy, it seems like the times for this fluctuate from day to day, so when is the best time to go visit is really hard to say. I will say mid to late morning or mid afternoon to early evening has been the best, she is pretty wiped out by 8:30 - 9:00 and ready for bed
      One huge step for her was yesterday, in her pt they had her standing on her feet, not sure for how long but it was amazing to see, my sister who works there sent a picture, praise God!! It is also a huge blessing to have one of the best therapists in the area working with Gail, I think she is in for quite a workout for the next few months, I am soo excited for her progress moving forward!!
  We still have a long ways to go!! God’s plan has been truly evident throughout this journey and I remain faithful and trusting in His plan moving on, Glory be and praise Him!!!   


       Thank you for your continued praise and prayer!!  Love you all!❤️❤️

                  God’s will be done!!

    

Journal entry by Steve Gregoire

Hello, quick update, Gail was transferred to the Minneota Manor today, we arrived their at about 2:00 this afternoon. Travel went really well, we stopped in Watertown for some water and she wanted to go to McDonalds for something to eat, I had to say no and she got kind of mad at me, she couldn’t understand why not!!  I got the opportunity to get her myself and my co-pilot Pastor James went with me, what a blessed time it was!! Thank you again James!!

   Now for visiting Gail, I’m hoping we can give her some time to settle in and get a new 
routine down before she gets overloaded with visitors, she still has a lot of recovery to do although she has made some remarkable progress!!! Please be mindful of what is best for her, the manor will have some control of this also, so short visits and rest, she still gets tired quickly with a lot of conversation. Thank you!!! ❤️❤️
   

           God’s will be done!!   He is definitely not done!!!!!   

Journal entry by Steve Gregoire

  Hello again    
   Wow what a weekend!!! I didn’t get to enjoy much of the nice weather we had but that’s ok I had a pretty amazing couple of days as well. Gail did get moved to a different room last week and got some much needed rest. She started off the week with getting the trach removed on Wednesday, as of today the wound is still not healed over completely but is doing very well with that. They did an X-ray of her swallowing to see if that was working ok, but is a little irregular because of the trach wound. They are feeding her some real food during the day making sure she can swallow everything ok, can you imagine not eating any solid food for three months, seems like with every bit it’s “this tastes soo good”!!😃. Doing very well with that! At night she is still on the feeding tube until she can get enough nutrition with food.
   On Friday night she did have a slight fever so on Saturday they did some testing to se what was going on, some infection somewhere, not sure what they found but were able to control the fever with Tylenol and started some extra fluids and an antibiotic just to be safe and get right on top of it if it turned out to be in her lungs or somewhere serious    
    
  Now on to some really amazing stuff!!! Today they used a mechanical lift to put her in a wheelchair for the first time!! You should have seen the smile on her face😂😂!! There is a small waiting area just outside her door with some big windows  so she could see outside a little better, she pushed herself out of her room and when she got outside of her door she stopped “ ta dah”!!  With a big old grin!! It took about ten minutes to go about 20 feet but she did it!! We all sat there and just celebrated, cried, and laughed. It was Gail’s sister Mary that was here for the weekend and Gabbi and Jazzi and I. In  celebration we played the  video of all the elementary kids with there wall of purple shouting “fight Gail fight”. She cried!!❤️❤️  Absolutely amazing!!! Praise God for all of her progress!!  No she can’t walk yet but I believe its a matter of time.


    Now this week if everything is going well there is talk about moving closer to home in a nursing home type setting. We do have some options in this area but I don’t have much information to give out yet, please keep these things in your prayers. Will be updating when I know more about where she is going!


                 God’s will be done!!! ❤️❤️

Journal entry by Steve Gregoire

Another quick update, Gail is going to be moved to room 708, we are hoping for a little quieter location so she can get some quality sleep at night, (prayer item).  I would like to ask all my prayer warriors to pray for all the patients at Vibra, some have some pretty heavy loads and also for the nurses, they seem to be running ragged and 1-2 hrs behind on their care. Gail has been one of the easier patients to care for praise God for that!!

  I also would like to extend prayers on behalf of Gail’s sister Mary and her husband Kurt,  Kurt’s dad was riding his  bike and was hit by a vehicle, he has some broken ribs and a broken arm, I’m sure pretty bruised up. I believe he is in his 80s. As you can imagine he can hardly move without being in pain, to try and sleep is worse!!  Thank you!!❤️❤️



         God’s will be done!!!

                
        

Journal entry by Mary and Kurt Krenik

Gail's family thanks each and every one of you for you outpouring of love, prayers, and support.

Gail had a routine surgery in Willmar on Wednesday and was to go home on Thursday. Things were going well until Wednesday late evening when she started to feel ill. Overnight she was vomiting and complained of a headache.

On Thursday morning, these symptoms continued and the decision was made that she would remain in the hospital. Late Thursday afternoon she was found unresponsive in her room. Her physicians believe she had a massive stroke which caused her to slip into a coma. She had a CT scan of her brain, where a brain tumor was found and the stroke was confirmed. She was rushed by ambulance to St. Cloud Hospital. She had an emergency surgery to relieve pressure on her brain and to help with swelling.

After surgery, she was placed in the Intesive Care Unit (ICU). Her condition was stable throughout Friday. Friends, family, and her church community rushed to be by her side to encourage and pray with and for her and her friends and family.

Today, Saturday, she is resting peacefully in the ICU. Her team of physicians and nurses are outstanding and providing for her every need. During her morning assessment, there may have been a slight improvement.

Gail's family asks that you use Caring Bridge for updates.

We ask for continued prayers for Gail, her healthcare team, her family & friends.
Gail’s Story

Site created on February 23, 2019

Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. 
Additionally, Swan Lake Church has set up a location to donate, which will go towards helping Steve and Gail with any monetary needs that will arise.  https://www.swanlakechurch.org/giving

Thank you for your continued love and prayers.

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