Monday, February 07, 2005

Tardy but good

Time for another update. I apologize for the delay, but we have been shifting between hotels like gypsies between camps. Also had to take Nicole to the airport- it is the beginning of the changing of the guard.

After a long and sleepless night for nearly all of us, we went this morning to see Mom. We were a little trepidatious about what we might find after last night. But it was a morning of improvements and forward steps.

First we were met by Dr. Sievers, Mom's primary attending. He reported that Mom has notably improved mentally to them. As a result, they had discontinued her sedation to try and wean her off the ventilator. In addition, her repeat chest Xray had good improvement with mild contusions (lung bruising) but no other major changes. He did not feel he was appropriate person to speak at length about her CT but did feel comfortable stating that there were no major or nasty surprises there.

On first viewing, Mom's eyelids were much less swollen and her feet were also less affected (pictures below). The splints that had been placed on her arms to keep her from pulling out her tube were gone as well. All in all, it was a great decrease in her instrumentation and must be more comfortable for her.

Mom was much much more 'there' this morning. She opened her eyes several times and looked at a sign we had made for her. She also did a lot of hand squeezing. Perhaps most importantly, she did a good job of controlling her breathing. Her breaths per minute were a little high and I explained how important it was that she keep them between ~15-23 so that they wil let her come off the ventilator. We told her how fast she was breathing and encouraged her to use the meter on the songs playing to estimate time. As she brought her respiratory rate down we let her know how good she was doing. And when the RT came in and asked her to take a deep breath and blow out, she did a really good job on the deep part. Not as ideal on the exhale but hey- these are leaps and bounds ahead of yesterday!

As she was doing better and seemed to be better up to a little longer visit, we stayed in shifts for about 2 hours. Finally, although the nurses were very kind and did not scold us for our blatant disregard of the rules, we reluctantly accepted it was time for her to take a rest. It was then, when I was explaining to her that we needed to leave her for a while so that she could rest and heal that the most striking thing occurred. She grasped our hands and cried and tried to sit up. It was very distressing and very wonderful.

Well, we are off to visit again. So I leave you to the pictures and in the warmth of our love-

jacqui

15 Comments:

Blogger Liz Dannemiller said...

I just wanted to say that all of our prayers here at vanderbilt are with Pam and all of her family. We know that she has the strength to come through all of this on top. We love her dearly and can't express how much she means to all of us in Blair, the Children's Chorus, the VUCC, and the vanderbilt community chorus. If there is ANYTHING that any of us can do back here in nashville to help, please don't hesitate to ask.

our prayers are with you~
Liz Dannemiller

6:00 PM  
Blogger Lindsay Kerrigan said...

Hello wonderful Schneller family!
I'm sitting here studying Beethoven's Eroica symphony thinking of all of you and realizing that the reason I am in fact studying music is because of Mrs. Schneller's love and care! Sounds as if you are all being wonderful caretakers. Much love and thanks to you for taking care of my Dream-Tender! Love and hugs and thoughts and prayers are with Pam and each of you. Thanks for keeping us updated!

6:21 PM  
Blogger Hannah Edelman & Family said...

Our thoughts are with you. We send our best hopes and wishes to Pam and Roland and family for a full and speedy recovery.

Hannah, Paul, Suzanna and Josh

6:22 PM  
Blogger VUCCHolly said...

I'd Like to report that a group from VUCC just successfully sang the National Anthem at the Vandy basketball game. Pam would be proud. We have been and will be continuing to keep her and your family in our thoughts and prayers now and throughout the road to recovery til she is able to come back to us. We miss her dearly!

6:36 PM  
Blogger Marianne said...

Jacqui,Brian and Roland,

I think about all of you many times throughout the day.
Thank you Jacqui for the updates. I check the posting regularly. I am so happy with the progress you are seeing. Tell your mom that we all love her and very much look forward to giving her a big hug sometime soon. I know this is a huge struggle for all of you but you are doing a great job! We love you all and are available for anything you need. LOVE MARIANNE AND STEVE

6:42 PM  
Blogger Why and Because said...

I just wanted to let you know that everyone in the Blair Concert Choir is praying and wishing and praying some more for our teacher to heal. We love her and we have so much respect for your taking the time to post and update on her condition. It gives us so much happiness to see the pictures of Roland's smiling face and Pam's improving one. Tell her that we love her more than anything and that a surprise from this motley crew of choristers is on the way!
~ Miranda (A motley chorister)

7:05 PM  
Blogger Sarah Musgrave said...

Dear Roland and Pam,
Mom and I just found out about your accident. I thought back to how kind you have been to me over the last few years and how much fun I had working with the Children's Choir during the Christmas concert. We're praying for you and your family. You're such a positive, bubbly, happy person. I just know you're going to win this battle! As soon as you're well enough to come back home, I'll come serenade you with some new dulcimer music. Deal? We'll keep checking on you every day!
Love, Sarah and Mom

7:14 PM  
Blogger Mike Rick said...

Jacqui,

It is great to hear of the improvments Pam is making. Thank you so much for keeping us informed. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

Michael Rickelton (VCC)

8:32 PM  
Blogger Erich Ramp said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:10 PM  
Blogger Kathryn Plummer said...

Dear Jacqui, Every bit of good news brightens everyone's day at Blair and today we were able to share it altogether. In today's faculty meeting, our Dean's very moving remarks emphasized how much love and support the Blair family has for each other. As he spoke, you could have heard a pin drop in the Choral Recital Hall as we greatly missed having Pam and Roland sitting among us. Please give Roland a big hug from me. Love, Kathryn

9:13 PM  
Blogger Erich Ramp said...

Jacqui, Brian & Roland,
It was so wonderful to read your reports today and hear about the positive progress Pam is making! Thank you for taking the time to keep us all informed. You all continue to be in our thoughts and prayers.

Love, Erich, Nancy & Ryan

9:15 PM  
Blogger charlotte said...

jacqui,
thank you so much for posting every day and keeping me updated. this may sound silly, but i try to read everything really slowly and look at the pictures one by one for a long time because i relish in every word of precious information about your mom and her progress. today at schoool, i told my bible teacher about her and what had happened over the weekend (we were out thursday and friday because SO many people at school had the flu!!), and we pulled up the site together. we started looking at the pictures again of her (the first ones), and i just started crying. i couldn't hold the tears in. it's so scary to look at those pictures because i don't know who i'm seeing in those pictures. i tried so hard to find some resemblance between the pam schneller i knew last week and the woman who is in that hospital bed, but i couldn't find one, and i felt so crushed and heartbroken for her. our whole bible class prayed for her today after my bible teacher told everyone what happened to her. i have told all of my friends to pray for her... school friends and church friends and other friends... and i'm getting instand messages like crazy from them and my cell phone rings off the hook with those people wanting to know how she's doing and what the latest news is. after i got the news on saturday that she was out of the coma, i was so relieved that i almost tackled rhonda swanson sunday morning at church trying to tell her the good news through tears of joy. we both laughed and cried together.

tonight we still had choir practice (hazel somerville and kelly winner helped out) and sang a little bit (and i teared up singing "lord, make me an instrument"), but spent most of the time fellowshipping with each other and thinking about your mom. all the girls signed cards and made her some really special stuff (i won't reveal more details so it can be a big surprise!!). all i'll say is that it's SUPER colorful!!!! it will make her room look like a kindergarten classroom or something. it will be awesome, i promise!! i know she will be so happy!! i'm also going to try to send a package soon with CDs and stuff. i've got some stuff she'll like that i really meant to give her a long time ago but never seemed to get around to it. better now than never is what i say!

i didn't realize what a gift life is until the past few days when all of this happened. i've never had anything like this happen to anyone i've been even remotely close to. as a christian, i knew that prayer was the standard response to something like this, but i was seriously doubtful that my prayers would be of any help in something so real to me like this. even though this has been terrible all in itself, this has stretched my faith to lengths i didn't know i could stretch to. i have experienced a true sign from my God in something that is tangible and real and not just what seems like a fairytale miracle in the old testament. God is REAL and He really DOES work for the good of his sons and daughters (and there is an awesome bible verse about this that i can't remember right now... when i remember, i'll post it). mrs. schneller is an inspiration to me and a witness to God's power and saving grace. please tell her that i love her dearly and that she means the world to me!!

"every day is a gift you've been given; make the most of the time, every minute you're livin'..."
-chris rice

"But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong."
-Psalm 18:2-

love (and prayers!!),
charlotte sublett

10:27 PM  
Blogger charlotte said...

i remembered that verse...

"And we know that in all things God works for
the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his
purpose."
-Romans 8:28

our mighty God is working for good in pam's life!! have faith!!!!
charlotte

11:40 PM  
Blogger Trish said...

Wonderful wonderful news to hear about Pam's improvement it is only a testement to her strength and the power of the family and friends that surround her!! Reading today's posting brought tears to my eyes. I can sit at my desk and just imagine Pam trying to get out of that bed to leave with you guys for the evening. Once again please let her know that all of us back in Nashville are thinking about her constantly and if you need anything please do not hesitate to call. I do want to drop a personal note...i have a brother who lives in LA (Beverly Hills) if you guys need some help in LA or maybe want to wash clothes please let me know. Thinking about all of you guys!!~Trish (VCC)

6:55 AM  
Blogger Al Ramp said...

HELLO TO PAM JAKE RAMP IS WATCHING YOUR PROGRESS EVERY DAY. SO IS MAE. WE ARE NOT VERY GOOD WITH THESE MODERN THINGS BUT PLEAS GET BETTER FAST AND WE WILL TRY TO SAY HELLO AGAIN SOON. JACQUI, BRIAN, ROLAND WE ARE THINKING OF YOU AND WILL CONTINUE TO DO SO. LOVE TO ALL OF YOU

8:26 PM  

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