Sunday, January 20, 2008


Here we are at the two week mark. AS I write this I notice that it is 3:50, two weeks and 5 minutes from the time we got the call. It is hard to believe all that has happened since then. One of the most remarkable things is the difference Joseph is starting to notice in himself now. Last year when his protein losing problem was first diagnosed, it began a long chain of events that has led us to the transplant. The protein problem is what first alerted doctors to the general decline in Joseph's health. The transplant was really their last option to reverse it. Because his body would basically flush protein out rather than use it properly, Joseph's physical energy declined, his body started collecting fluid in his abdomen, his heart had an even harder time keeping up, and his mental and physical reflexes slowed down. He couldn't play video games that required very much eye-mind-hand coordination, for example, or perform mental calculations to keep score in a game. One of our family favorite games is a version of rummikube; Joseph could not play more than two or three rounds before the effort of concentrating on the game wiped him out. Possibly the worst part was the fact that Joseph recognized the difference but couldn't change it.

Now two weeks later, Joseph is noticing the difference again. His heart works like never before in his life, it delivers oxygen and nutrients more effectively than ever to his mind and body. As a result, he feels better than he has in a long time. Best of all, however, is that his mind has regained its sharpness. He corrects Wendy's math when she keeps score during a game. Joseph has always been bright, but now he is getting hard to beat at any game that requires strategy. He can play his favorite video games again with only minor inconvenience from the steroid-induced shakiness in his hands. And he is discovering that he likes reading, never his favorite activity. He notices that it doesn't take the full effort of concentration that it used to for him. I'm excited to see what a new heart does for his physical energy. If it is like the transformation in his mind, nothing will stop him.

Keep the prayers going. We are confident that they help. Between our friends and family, people in your church congregations, and the temple prayer lists, a goodly number of people prayer for him several times a day. Thank you all for all you have done. In addition to the benefits for Joseph, the rest of our family is reaping the benefits as well. Wendy and I have the energy to spend time with Joseph and yet to work out a schedule that lets one of be home with Kent, Laura, Heather, and Nathaniel each day as well. It has been important to maintain as normal a life as possible at home. As a result, the others are dealing with the stress better than I expected.


No comments: