DB continues to do well after his surgery! Since I last wrote, he has settled into his non-ICU room quite nicely, and so have I. In particular, I like that I can stay and don't have to leave him here alone at night. We haven't had this much time together in ages! Ha ha!
In addition, DB's pain is being managed nicely, all of his accessories are gone, and he is moving around a bit - YEA! The pain is getting much better. It still hurts, and will for a while, but he is on a good regimen that's keeping him comfortable.
While he has to be attached to monitors until being discharged, all of his other lines are gone! Last IV came out yesterday, as well as the chest drainage tube. The IV was straight forward, but the chest tube was fascinating! Well, fascinating for me :) For DB it was a bit painful. Another bonus about these lines being out, is the reduced chance of infection - this is huge!
In addition, DB is moving around much better. It's incredibly hard to get used to not using your arms for anything... for example it's like doing squats every time you stand up or sitting down. Also, just moving is a bit difficult, but DB is working hard and increasing his laps... he claims it's the beginning of his training :) Plus, once all the lines were out, we got to go sit outside and soak up some sunshine for about 30 minutes - loved it.
Only one set-back from our original/ideal plan... we can't go home today. I mentioned DB has started taking coumadin, and the next step is for that coumadin to raise DB's INR to approximately 2.5. That number in someone not taking blood thinners is around 1. INR (International Normalized. Ratio) measures the time it takes for blood to clot and compares it to an average. Coumadin is a blood thinner, so DB needs to find the right dose that will both thin his blood for the new mechanical valve (helping to avoid blood clots) but also keep it thick enough for the blood to clot if necessary (for example a cut or bruise).
At this point, there's a 50% chance we can come home tomorrow. All I'm saying is the glass is half full!
Things on the home front are going well, from what I hear :) I'm so thankful for that! One of the hardest parts about staying at the hospital is missing the kiddos... actually, probably the hardest part. Makes me teary. Boo. But again, they're happy and surrounded by people who care about them! Plus, all the help we have allows me to stay with DB, and from what he says, I've been helpful here :)