Sunday, June 11, 2006 at 12:19 am 3 comments

Hi everyone,

Today was more excellent progress.  Doug's moving a lot—rubbing his head, pointing at injured areas, grabbing his feet in a little stretch routine he's developed, and so on.  When he started shuffling about a bit there was some concern that he didn't seem to be moving his left side much.  However, no one's worried about that after today, there was plenty of movement there.  He also had his eyes open a number of times throughout the day, though not for long.

He's now off all the heavy sedatives that he had been on, which is no doubt contributing to all this movement.  It is pretty clear that this takes all of his energy though.  As you watch there's definite patterns of moving for a few minutes, then falling asleep for a few minutes, then repeating that, on and on.  I can only imagine how exhausting it must be, with all the repairs going on in his body, but he still seems to be swinging and shuffling away.  Several times today Doug was seen trying to pull himself up in his bed, and raised his head off his pillow for the first time.

He still has pneumonia but is on minimal assistance from the ventilator.  As planned, early today they started dosing him on steroids to strengthen his vocal chords in order to remove the ventilator tube soon.  Later this evening Dan and Jen talked with a respiratory specialist who said he believes they'll be able to remove the ventilator tomorrow with no problem.  Doing so would be awesome, as Doug then wouldn't need a tracheostomy and would have one large obstacle toward speaking removed.

Having Doug awake and moving again is almost a shock.  After the huge initial upset at seeing him completely motionless, I'd really conditioned myself to that.  To have him all of a sudden moving around and responding to people with gestures and movements is just incredible.

Dinner tonight was also great.  I really have to thank DB for arranging things, and everyone who brought food.  There were a number of comments from the student types that it was the best they'd eaten in a while.  All the real food was very good, and some of the desserts were just amazing, like Z's brownies and the cake Jessi's mom made. It was also fun to get a chance to talk to some of Doug's friends that I didn't know.

That last bit really fit in well with something I've been thinking about all day.  I've never been through anything like what Doug's going through, but I've been through a number of my own bad crashes. Since I started racing I've had seven bone fractures, three or four as-serious muscle injuries, and a host of smaller but significant bruises, cuts, and scrapes.  It's just part of the game.  For a competitive cyclist, if you never ever crash then you're either supernaturally good or you're just not trying hard enough.

But, it's hard.  Twice I've had my entire cycling year wiped out because of crashes.  The frustration is the hardest part, much worse than the pain.  You train and train and train, only to watch it all get dashed away in an instant, quite possibly an instant not of your making.  They don't make drugs for that kind of heartbreak.

I've found two ways to deal with these sorts of things.  One is just the cold truth that no matter what happens, even something as bad as Doug's case, it could be worse.

The other is that there's always a positive.  Without hesitation I would label those two "lost" years as two of the best of my life.  Not being able to ride or race was deeply upsetting.  But on the upside, not being on my bike meant I could do lots of other things instead, like soccer, backpacking, barbecues, traveling, whatever.  Both times I did all sorts of activities and made all sorts of new friends that I would not have otherwise.  Those years were painful and frustrating, but I would not trade them in for the world.

No one would ever wish this whole ordeal had ever happened.  Our poor Doug's hurt and lost and trapped in the hospital, and it's horrible. But, for me, there's already been positive things.  Because this awful thing happened, I've met and gotten to know better all sorts of wonderful people that I would not have otherwise, like I did tonight at the dinner, as I have in the waiting room and in all your messages and comments.

So, I don't know what it's going to be like for Doug from here, or what's going to happen.  But I do know that he's getting better, and that good will come of this if he wants it to.

– joe


Entry filed under: update.

Friday Sunday

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. DBs  |  Sunday, June 11, 2006 at 4:26 am

    i know what you mean Joe, I feel the same way. Doug always does seem to see the good in everything and everyone, so I’m sure it will be a fun and interesting time nonetheless

  • 2. mert bryson  |  Sunday, June 11, 2006 at 6:41 am

    to the family and friends of doug, my prays and thoughts are with you all,god bless, mert

  • 3. Susan Macaluso  |  Sunday, June 11, 2006 at 10:39 am

    Though I don’t personally know Doug, I do know Jen from working at UHS (AUS). Since I have been reading Dougtales, I can feel the warmth and compassion from an amazing group of friends.
    Joe, you certainly keep everyone up to date. Doug & his family are certainly very lucky to have you in their lives.
    Doug, Jen, Dan, etc. you are in my thoughts and prayers.
    Keep the faith & GOD BLESS.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed

Random Doug


Dougtales’ Tweets

Recent Comments

Carla on 2012 Christmas Ornaments
Bob E Ruddy on 2012 Christmas Ornaments
Daniel Markgraf on 2011 Christmas/Holidays Orname…
Kathy Kirlin on 2010 Christmas Ornament!
Rick Poleshuck on Almost time to start Raisin…
June 2006
    Jul »


Blog Stats

  • 65,378 hits

%d bloggers like this: