I talked to Jared's speech therapist yesterday, she had so many wonderful things to say about Jared.
We talked about goals before I left Virginia. I told her my goals were communication and eating. She has been working very hard on both.
She said when she approached the doctors about feeding Jared her goal was "pleasure feedings" to satisfy my desire to feed Jared. Jared has completely surpassed her goal.
She said Jared was doing very well, eating 75 to 90% of his meals. He is even able to feed himself. She also said Jared was able to eat a banana, he chewed and swallowed with no problems.
She has hope that Jared will be able to eat enough that the feeding tube can one day be removed. Eventually Jared should be able to have a normal diet.
Jared's communication has also improved. 90% of the time Jared answers yes and no questions correctly. "Mrs. M" the speech therapist told me a few days ago Jared was able to write his name.
She also told me that he rolled himself to the nurses station and tried to sign himself out of the unit (all patients have to sign out before they leave). She told him if he was signing himself out that he had to write the time he was leaving. She told him the time was 15:oo and he wrote 1500 on the paper.
The nurses tell me Jared communicates well with them. He lets them know when he's tired or in pain. He tells them if he is ready for bed and is able to get their attention. Usually he communicates with gestures, sometimes he is able to whisper.
Yesterday I had to drive to Little Rock for some paper work. I had some extra time so I stopped by the trauma hospital. I spoke with a few people who cared for Jared, I also spoke to the nurse manager from the ICU. I gave them an update and explained that Jared had only needed a shunt. She was so happy to hear Jared was getting better and was completely shocked that all he needed was a shunt.
I haven't been holding up as well as I should be. I've been really stressed lately and a little depressed. I do good for a while and then it hits me. I guess we all have our breaking points and I'm sure I'll feel much better after I see Jared. He always makes me feel better.