I'm happy to report that all is going well for Joseph. The procedure on Saturday that I already described was a smashing success. He is up and about, eating well, and generally in good spirits. At this point he is recovered from the surgery in the same way anybody else would be after a week. He got up three or four times for a walk yesterday, he doesn't need hardly any help getting in and out of bed, and only minimal support while walking. The support is more because it makes us feel better than because of any real need on his part. He is only taking a pain pill infrequently and then it is Tylenol w/codeine and not the stronger stuff. They got him off the morphine drip pretty fast. He had a morphine addiction when he was a baby, so we were glad to have him off of it quickly. It is hard for me to describe how well he is doing and how well he looks. There may yet be setbacks, but none seem likely.
The main thing now is that they need to monitor him for a couple of more weeks to be sure that there are no signs of rejection. The drugs that he needs have mostly all been switched over to pill form that he swallows. They all need to be that way before he can come home. And then there is just the long monitoring process to be sure all is well before they let him out of sight. They want to make sure that the medications levels in his blood are correct and that they aren't messing up his liver or kidneys. After he comes home, he will still have to go back for tests two times a week for another six months or so and then it calms down to once a week and then one every two weeks and then only once a month. So we have a year of driving ahead of us. Thanks, to Mom & Dad and Helen & Neil for gas money.