Iwo Gima

Iwo Gima
Marine Corps Marathon

Saturday, March 31, 2012

March 31, 2012

Wow! The end of March already - and a great day to end it with. The morning started with Linda getting up and me fixing breakfast - Oatmeal with Raisins (well, Linda had dried cranberries), and we all had enough to eat, and there wasn't any left over - I must have done something wrong... ;-) I've posted a few pictures from what we did today, and like it has been said, "a picture is worth a thousand words," each of these pictures says at least that. We went to the beach, to spend the first part of the day with Anthony Netto, of Stand Up and Play Foundation, and it was a great day. I really don't know who had the better time, Jason or the girls, or me for that matter. Anthony and Jason were all over the place with their respective carts, and it was such a great sight to see Jason up right and hugging Mom. They were even walking down the beach, holding hands for a little while. Mom was in heaven. Jason and I are going to be going back over to see Anthony tomorrow, to work with the carts a little more, and give Jason a chance to learn more about how they operate. Anthony has gotten to the point where it truly is like an extension of his body, and he is able to go and do just about anything.

Linda's parents also came in this evening, though we didn't get to see them yet. We will be getting together tomorrow, as long as Grandma is feeling better. She seems to have caught a cold and didn't want to bring the bug over to share with Jason. We were both grateful for that. Actually, Linda did get to see them for a short while and she felt that tomorrow her mom would be better, at least good enough to visit with Jason.

I may post more pictures tomorrow - depending on how things go. I have such a poor network connection that downloading almost anything is slow and arduous. I've talked to Jason about this and we have a plan to get it corrected next week. Once that is done we should be in much better shape. Thank you, all for all your prayers and support, and please include Anthony and his foundation when you have some money to donate to a worthy cause.

Friday, March 30, 2012

March 30, 2012

Today was a little different, in that Jason and Larry (his HHA) went to Balboa Hospital, for his appointments and I stayed with the girls. As it was, Jason's first appointment was at 13:00(1pm) and that is the same time as when the girls are going down for their naps. We really didn't want to take them in today, to the day care, drop-in center, especially for such a short time and right at their nap time; besides, I had promised them that I would take them to see the boats. Anyway, it left us going in two directions at the same time.

From what Jason tells me, he had a great time at OT (Occupational Therapy), with Lynn, and that she worked him pretty hard. He got on to the mats and was doing some more strenuous type exercises, and that made him very happy. I said I was going to be speaking with the medical folks and seeing if they were comfortable with Jason getting more involved with the PT (Physical Therapy) folks, so that he could get more of those type work outs. Of course we will be very mindful of his wounds, and making sure they remained protected. Its just that Jason is really wanting to do more than what they have been doing. He also had to pick up a Rx today, only this time he decided to work the system a little better. He went to the pharmacy before his appointment, to get things going, and then once he was done with OT he just went back over to pick up his meds, and not have to deal with the waiting. It seemed to have worked, so we will probably do it this way from now on.

In the mean time, I took the girls over to the harbor to show them some of the boats that were there. Stacy was very excited to see them and we walked up and down the docks a couple of times. Getting out on the piers was not possible this time, as they all had locked gates on them, but we could see them close enough. Perhaps we can get on to one of the boats sometime later, and then Stacy will be very excited in deed.

Right now I'm getting ready to go pick up Linda at the airport - she comes in tonight and will be staying with us through Easter. The girls are excited to have her come down, almost as much as me... ;-)

Thank you, for all your prayers and support.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

March 29, 2012

Today was a nice day - the kind of day that I really appreciate. Jason had to get to a couple of appointments and we needed to get the girls over to their care, and it all went smoothly. The only thing we didn't do that we possibly should have was to go to the pharmacy to fill another of his Rx. Obviously we're not out of that particular medication, though we are low, so we decided we could wait a day or so to get it done. We picked the girls back up after only a couple of hours, and then we spent the rest of the day with them, and relaxing at the house. Not sure what has gotten in to the girls, but it must have been some happy juice or maybe its just in the air; because they were both goofy and playing all over the place. It wore me down a bit, but it was fun being with them, that's for sure.

About the only other thing that Jason did today was to get in touch with Anthony Netto, the guy with the golf assist carts (not sure what to call them yet). They are actually capable of doing much more than just golf, its just that golf is where Mr. Netto did most of his work. Anyway, Jason is really interested in getting one, and that is moving too - I hope. Anthony has invited us to go to the beach with him, so that he and Jason can go out to the tide pools, this Saturday. Linda will be down tomorrow, so she'll be able to come along, and she and I can play with the girls, while the guys go exploring. I hope I can take a bunch of pictures as it should be a great deal of fun.

Jason told the girls the story of Billy Goats Gruff and The Troll, and Stacy was totally into the story. It felt good to have him put the girls to bed, at least as much as he could, and the girls really liked having Daddy there to kiss them good night. Basically the routine is that after dinner the girls get to go play for a little while then I take them in for their bath, and then they go to bed. Usually Jackie is slowing down about this time and Stacy seems to be getting a second wind or something. Then the story time comes along and she calms right down to listen, and if Daddy is telling the story it is even better.

That was the end of the day, and now it is the end of the day for me too. Thank you, all for all your continued support and prayers.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

March 28, 2012

This morning was another of those crazy, hurry up and go kind of mornings. I thought I had about a 1/2 hour more time than I did, so I began the day with only a glass of orange juice. I made sure everyone else had been fed, and I knew I would be able to go until lunch... at least that's what my early morning thoughts were. Heck, we only had two appointments, and then we were going to be going back to the house, and we should be able to get back by 11:00. Well, the OT appointment was only 30 minutes, and Jason got there right on time. Then the dermatology appointment (Laser treatment check up) went very well. The wounds are already showing some positive signs from the treatment, and Jason was not uncomfortable at all. We are to go back for the next visit in about a week, and then the next treatment about a month after that. So far, so good. As you can remember, Jason was in ER over the weekend, and needed to go back into Urology for a follow up, and find out if there was an infection he needed to be treated for. Problem with that is that for whatever reason they were VERY busy this morning and Jason didn't have an appointment. He was told to just walk in and it shouldn't take too long (famous last words). They told us it was going to be about a 2 hour wait and it was now about 11:00, and yes, I was getting hungry by now. We decided to go to lunch and just come back afterward.

Well, we did go and have lunch, and Larry, the Home Health Aid was hanging in there like a trooper. He hadn't brought his lunch with him, since we were going to be back home before that, and he didn't complain at all. Of course lunch isn't too costly, but that's beside the point. We had our lunch and then headed back over to Urology, and then found out that Jason did in fact, have another urinary infection, and now we were going to have to get back over to the pharmacy and pick up another prescription. Well, to make a long story short(er) we did pick up the new Rx and then now, since it was relatively close to the end of the day, I went over to pick up the girls from day care and we all just went home together.

I was glad we got all these things out of the way, and now we don't have to worry about them anymore, its just that it does tend to wear me out, especially when I think I'm going to have time to work on other things, and then find out I have no time to work on anything. I was planning to do some laundry, and that didn't happen until almost 06:00 (the last load in in right now). I probably could do another couple of loads, but I think I'll just hold until tomorrow, I'm getting tired and I still need to take care of Jason's meds. Linda will be here this Friday, so I'll leave some things for her to do... ;-)

Thank you, for all your prayers and all the continued support.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

March 27, 2012

Today started with a call to Linda, my wife, to wake her up, as she likes to have me call her rather than listen to the alarm. I called her at 05:40, and that also gives us a few minutes to talk and discuss what we plan on doing during the day. After I got off the phone with Linda I got up and started to get ready for the day, and then the phone started to ring and it was Larry, Linda's brother. He wasn't going to be able to come down as planned, and perhaps that was a better thing after all, as the girls were kind of slow to get ready this morning. They wanted to play and run around rather than get ready. Then again, it might have been that I was letting them run around and play because now Larry wasn't coming... ;-)

Larry actually called me a bit later in the day and told me that the biggest factor keeping him from coming down was the fact that he felt he was catching a cold or some other ailment, and he didn't want to introduce it to Jason. I thanked him for that and told him that we were going to be here for a while, and that he can still come back down some other time. We might even go fishing this summer, and I think Jason would really enjoy that.

Jason's appointment today was with the concussion clinic and they wanted to see how he was doing. As it was, right after the blast he was kept in a comma for a couple of weeks and when they brought him up they did a quick check to see if there was any possible concussion type injury. Because there appeared to be none there wasn't any other checking or follow up until now. Actually there hasn't been anything to worry about as he is mentally functioning just fine. It was good to have the appointment though, as it is something that needs to be followed.

The rest of the day/evening was spent just relaxing around the house and playing with the girls. I still need to get over to the book store to find a copy of bible stories for children. Right now her favorite bed time story is Jack and the Bean Stalk, and most of the time she see herself as the main character, so I do some modifications to make it work and she is happy. Jackie is usually asleep by the time I'm done with the story.

Tomorrow is going to be an easier day - I think - so I'm kind of looking forward to a little more down time. Then again, if there is some down time I might take the family for a drive over to the marina and just look at the boats. Jackie is fascinated with airplanes so I want to expose her to something new.

Thank you, for your continued support and prayers.

Monday, March 26, 2012

March 26, 2012

Jason and I had a busy day today - with it starting off early and getting the girls up and going at about 07:00. Okay, that really isn't TOO early for a bunch of you, but for two little girls who got to bed late last night, that's early. Anyway, Jason needed to be at the hospital at about 08:30, to get a few things in order, prior to the laser procedure. We were able to get to the appointment, and get the girls to the day care, with time to spare. Jason was "admitted" and brought to the waiting area, where he just laid in a bed, and waited. He was scheduled to go in at about 10:00 and they told me he should be back out by 11:00. I was kind of surprised at this, as I thought it was going to take much longer. Well, he did take longer, and wasn't back to his bed and recovery area until almost noon. Then when he was brought in he was still asleep from the anesthetic, and it was a deep sleep. He was snoring pretty loud, and to be honest, I thought it was kind of cute/funny. The nurses told me I should just go get some lunch and come back later, so I went to the galley and grabbed me some food, and then was able to sit with Commander Ledyard, so I had someone to talk to. Commander Ledyard knows Jason pretty well, so I didn't have to explain anything, and that in itself was nice.

After lunch I went back to Jason's waiting room area, and he was now awake (he woke about 15 minutes before I arrived). The funny thing is that another Jason (one of the other patients we've gotten to know) was now there, and he was in that exact same condition Jason was a little over an hour ago, and snoring just as loud. He woke up while Jason was getting ready to leave, so we had a chance to talk a little, while we were there. Another thing I had done while Jason was still in the procedure was to speak with Dr. Pyo, and let him know that Jason needed some of his prescriptions refilled. This meant that we were going to need to go to the pharmacy some time today, in order to get those needed meds. But, I'm getting ahead of myself.

Like I said, I went to pick up Jason at a little after noon, so when we were coming out of the hospital Jason made the comment that he could use something to eat. We went straight home, and I fixed him a sandwich and a bowl of soup. He was laying down when he ate, and then just rested for a short while. When it was time to head back to get the girls from day care, we knew we were going to have to head to the pharmacy, though neither of us knew just how long it was going to take. I went to get the girls while Jason went to the pharmacy, and then I came over. Even with his permission to go to the head of the line, it still took nearly 90 minutes to fill the prescriptions. Made me feel sorry for those other folks who had to wait the full time, to pick up their prescriptions. Some days it is just bad...

That was the end of the day, and we were glad to be back at the house. When we got there Bob Hammer drove up right behind us. Bob stayed for a short visit, and then left. It was nice seeing him, its just I wish we weren't so tired at that point. Even the girls were kind of tired. I gave the girls a little snack, and that seemed to help, so I began dinner right away, and we had dinner a little while later. After dinner I gave them their bath, got them ready for bed, and told them a story. Actually, Jackie was asleep before I was done with the story.

Tomorrow is going to be another busy day, just not near as busy as today was. On top of that Larry, Linda's brother in coming down for a short visit, so we'll get to see him early in the morning, and then Jason will be off to his appointments. I need to get to bed right now, so I'll attempt to explain the laser treatment he had, tomorrow. Thank you, for all your continued prayers and support.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

March 25, 2012 -

Not much to report about today, as it was quiet, and not much was done. About the only note worthy event was that the girls are now back with us, and we will have them for the next two weeks. Tomorrow is a big day for Jason, and thus a big day for all of us, and we need to have the girls up and going by 07:30. I suspect that I will have a bunch to write about tomorrow, so enjoy your evening and I am going to bed.

Thank you, all for your continued prayers and support, it is appreciated.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

March 24, 2012

Not much to report about, since it was a quiet day and we didn't have anything to do other than kick back and eat ice cream. Okay, we didn't just eat ice cream, but we did have some... ;-) I went for a bike ride today that took me a little over an hour. I am guessing that I went about 10 miles, considering the number of traffic lights I came across. It was about the only thing, out of the ordinary that was done today, and tomorrow we're planning on heading over to the AMC theater (a different one) to see if they have better seating. We might take the time to look for a couple of theaters, but probably not. Jason is better to not be up in his chair any longer than he needs to be.

Tomorrow the girls come back in to our lives, and that will make Jason happy (me too). We will have them for the next two weeks, and yes that does cover Easter. Linda will be coming down, and even David and Dylan are probably going to be here for Easter, and the Easter Egg hunt. We've invited a couple of other kids over, so we should actually have a pretty good "hunt" going on, with the oldest being four years old. I'll keep you posted on what happens.

That's about it for now, Jason is in bed relaxing, and I am about to head off to my bed, to get some sleep. Thank you, all for your continued support and prayers.

Friday, March 23, 2012

March 23, 2012

Apologies for being so late with this post, but unfortunately Jason needed to go to the ER again, due to another bladder infection. The good news is that he felt it coming on much sooner this time, and because of the last time he recognized the feel and told me he needed to go. We've just spent the last 7 hours at the ER and pharmacy, with the pharmacy functioning at their normal level of proficiency. I had to go talk to them twice in order to get the medications the doctors requested. Anyway, as it stands right now, the infection looks to me much less concerning than it was last time, and Jason was given the right meds (I hope) to at least keep it in check until Monday, when we need to get back to the hospital.

The interesting thing is that he already had an appointment set up for Monday, with the laser doctor, so I am hoping that this doesn't mess things up for that treatment. I was concerned with the amount of time Jason was staying up in his chair, but it didn't look like there was any other options readily available. I am going to be talking to the care coordinators on Monday, to find out if this is something that can be corrected next time. Jason should not be up in his chair more than 4 to 5 hours, otherwise it starts to cause damage. Seven hours is too much.

If it hadn't been for the sudden need for a trip to the ER I would have said that today was a pretty good day. We mostly stayed at home, with the one trip to the grocery store, and fortunately that was a quick trip. Jason wanted to go though, and be sure he had the right food at the house, since the girls are coming back on Sunday. Anyway, we got through today, and right now, other than being late, I'd still have to say it was a pretty good day, since it turned out okay. Thank you, for all your continued prayers and all the support. I hope everyone has a great weekend.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

March 22, 2012 - Let's take up golf

Today was a day that we had no appointments, at the hospital. Jason was contacted by the Master Sergeant, from the Wounded Warrior battalion, who had been contacted by another individual (I think), and they had been contacted by Anthony Netto of the organization Stand Up and Play Foundation. They have come up with a "cart" that allows the individual the ability to become more mobile, and thus more active in whatever it is they want to do. Mr. Netto himself is paralyzed from the waist down, and was at one point a quadriplegic, due to two different injuries (that in itself is a separate story, that I'll let him tell). Bottom line is that he feels that because of this mobile device/cart, he has regained the use of this upper body. It wasn't just the cart alone, but it was a major contributor, and now he is a strong advocate of this device for anyone who has injuries. Most of the people he sees are dealing with neurological issues, and I was skeptical at first. I didn't see how it was going to help Jason, since the design appears to be for someone with at least stumps or with legs, even if they are paralyzed. Jason was willing to try and it worked quite well.

Anthony Netto is an avid golfer, and carries a handicap of zero, or no handicap. He is able to drive a ball farther than just about anyone, because he is strong enough and because of the physics involved with the cart. He showed Jason how to do some putting, and how to drive and this was the first time Jason ever picked up a club, other than pee-wee golf. Jason was able to be up in this new configuration longer and more comfortably than we thought he would, and all of this pleased us very much. I took a bunch of pictures and will try to post a couple, but they really don't do it justice. We are going to follow up with this, over the next few weeks, and see if Jason can get one of these chairs, and the government will (or should) pay for it.

One of the other advantages of this chair is that it can elevate the person sitting in it, so that they can now have access to the upper cabinets in the kitchen, or garage, or whatever room you're in. It allows them to feel much more independent. I'll let you know how this moves along, and I'll see if I can get more information about Stand Up and Play Foundation out to everyone.

Once we were done with that bit of excitement we came back to the house and Jason was ready to lay back down. He was tired from all the activity, and was feeling a little sore from suddenly being in positions he hadn't been in for more than a year. Along with all that going on, Sergeant Major Lawson came over to visit, as he was out here for some meetings, and other Marine business. He had stopped by to see Jason while he was still in the hospital, and wanted to check up on him, and it was good for them to get a chance to talk. He stayed for about an hour or so, then had to get going himself. By now it is getting later in the day, and I still need to fix Jason and my dinner.

Jason had a busy day, and pretty exciting one at that. I am hoping to sleep well tonight, as I think he will, and we'll need to see what adventures we can take on tomorrow. Thank you, for all your continued prayers and support.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

March 21, 2012 - This isn't laser tag

Well, today was a special day, and in more ways than one. It started off with George, Jason's oldest brother, turning 35 - wow, they sure are getting old, glad I'm not. Then on top of that, Jason got to the 32 level of the game he has been playing (I know, I need to remember to find out the name so I can let everyone know). The game has several more levels, but Jason can't tell me how many. He just enjoys the mental challenge of getting through the different levels.

We had breakfast and then got ready to head over to the hospital for the therapy sessions and then consultation with the doctor on the possible laser treatment. The OT session was pretty normal, and they worked with his right hand and arm, and it looks like there is strength returning, just like they want to happen. I was pleased to see how he was able to use "the grips" (spring loaded clamps) to move pegs from one area to another, and place them in specific orientation. He said his hand was very tired when he was done, and then he went to go throw around a medicine ball with the therapist. Once he was done with that we went off to the dermatologist.

We took a bit of a circuitous route to get to his office, and then still managed to get there on time. Apparently he is one of the few doctors looking at this as a type of treatment for wound healing, and has had some success in working with it. I asked if there were any papers or articles I could read to learn more, and he said there really isn't anything on the web, at least from what he knew, so he provided me with a couple of papers I will read tomorrow. Once I have done that I can better understand the workings behind this. He was very excited to be working with Jason, and took some pictures of the wounds and what he wanted to do. I also provided him with some other information, that the other doctors had a history of photos, and that was good. He was hoping that Jason would not mind if he was shown as a case study for other doctors, and Jason said he was okay with that.

The next step will happen on Monday, when the first treatment will happen. Jason will be going to the PICU (Pediatric ICU), and because of this, he will be getting a little better attention, or at least that's what they told us. I'm just excited that it is happening so soon. As things develop, and we learn more I will be putting the appropriate information here.

Once we were done with the appointments we had lunch, and then there was one other meeting Jason had to get to. There was a group of dignitaries coming in, and they had requested to meet with a select group of Marines, and Jason was one of those selected. Larry, the new Home Health Aid, and I sat out in the lobby area, since this was supposed to be just for the Marines this time, and then all the visitors ended up in the lobby. The Marines brought the visitors over to me, and spoke with me for a few moments, and I thanked them for taking the time to meet with Jason. Once the meeting was over Jason told me that the main guy spent some time with Jason and he was very pleased with that, and with what he told him, though I don't know what it was. Perhaps I'll learn later... ;-)

The rest of the day was relaxed and Jason got back in bed, as he wanted to "get off his feet." He started to play his game again, and then fell asleep, and I was able to participate in a conference call (first one in a long time), and start to begin rebuilding my career. After being off work for more than a year it might take some time to get that going again. Thank you, all for all the continued prayers and all the support you have been sending our way.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

March 20, 2012 - Spring has Sprung!

No rain today, and in fact, a very nice day, without a cloud in the sky. We started with a new Home Health Aid (HHA), Larry, today, and I am hopeful that he is going to work out for us. His personality is excellent and he and Jason seem to get along just fine. On top of that, he's a big guy, so if Jason should ever need help he will be able to do the job (that's a big one for me). Larry grew up in the Army, where his father stayed for over 20 years, so he is very familiar with the military, though he does not have any active duty time, himself.

We went to the Naval Base Hospital and took care of a couple of appointments for Jason, and then we had lunch in the Galley. They were serving food that was from the Philippine Islands. Not that it was made in the islands, just the recipes... and Larry seemed very please with the offerings, too. When we were done with our lunch we headed right back to the van and headed back to the house. Jason was ready to get back to bed, so that he could, as he would say, "get off my feet."

Not much else to write about today, so I'll just leave it at that. I hope everyone had a great first day of Spring, and I should have more to go over tomorrow. We have a couple of appointments tomorrow, with one of them being with the laser doctors, so we can get an idea of what is going to be happening next. Thank you, for all your prayers and continued support.

Monday, March 19, 2012

March 19, 2012

Well, it rained again today, though not as much as it has the previous two days. I had the opportunity to speak with a local guy, yesterday (at dinner) and he mentioned that when it rains like this they start to get concerned about the summer, because with so much water there is an over abundance of wild plant life and that is just fuel for wild fires. Well, were we live there really isn't too much worry about the fires directly, but the smoke would probably be a major issue. Anyway, I digress way too much this evening...

Jason had a nice relaxed day, and aside from a 15:00 (3:00pm) meeting, non-medical, he didn't have much of a reason to get out of bed. He did, however get up early enough to take a shower; which gave me plenty of time to change the bedding out; and, then afterward we went to Costco. We went to a closer one this time, since we still needed to go to the meeting when we were done. We also had lunch at Costco. Sometimes I wish we had a bigger refrigerator, but then that would mean I would just buy more food to sit in the freezer, and the space for the refrigerator would not accomodate a larger refrigerator anyway.

The meeting at the base was actually kind of fun for Jason, and the other Marines, and after it was over the Master Sergeant came over to speak with Jason specifically. He said he knew of someone who was interested in helping Jason, specifically, by providing him with a different kind of lift mechanism, that can also be used around the house for mobility. I supposed it could also be used out from the house, but it sounds like it is designed specifically for the house use. He would be able to "raise" himself high enough so that he could get things out of the upper cupboards, and still low enough that he could work from the counter tops, as he does today. We will be heading up to see this guy on Thursday, to get a better look at what he is talking about. Then there was also a message from one of the generals (apologies that I don't remember his name), who asked about Jason specifically, along with a couple of other guys, and they wanted to be sure he was going to be available next week for a visit. I think it is cool that Generals are making requests and scheduling visits with Jason. Jason seems to be very humbled by that kind of attention, almost embarrassed.

Tonight was laid back, much like the morning was. Jason got back in bed and in a matter of about 30 minutes (or less) he was sound asleep. I woke him for dinner, a short while later, and now it is getting close to bed time. Thank you, all for all your continued support and prayers.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

March 18, 2012

Today was a little different around here, at least for San Diego it was a little different. Last night it started to rain a little heavier, and it rained through the night, and was actually a bit blustery this morning. It continued to rain for most of the morning, and was off and on for most of the rest of the day. It finally did let up a bit and Jason and I got out to go to Home Depot (its just around the corner). Jason wanted to hand up a few more things, on the walls, and in order to do that I needed to put some "picture wire" on the back, but I didn't have any pliers to work with. We found a small pack of assorted pliers and then also purchased a small set of screw drivers. Actually, we had to go to my favorite area of the Home Depot, and that is where the hand tools are kept. It just amazes me at how much engineering can go into a simple hand tool, and then there are those who want to "improve" it. Even the simple hammer - there are so many different hammers, for so many different applications now that it boggles the mind. Anyway, Jason picked out a small set of screw drivers and a small set of pliers, and then we were back on our way to the house, so that we could put together a toy for the girls and to hang up some pictures and stuff.

Actually we got some of the work done and hung up a couple of things, then I told Jason that he needed to lay back down, since we were going to Gary's (a friend or ours), who had invited us over for corned beef and cabbage. It was a little later in the afternoon, and I didn't want Jason up any longer than needed. Also, just I figured, Jason fell asleep, and he slept right up to the time we needed to go. The good part was that there were very few cars on the roads and the trip over was both easy and quick. Gary had prepared a wonderful meal, including dessert, and he had a few other guests over as well. Actually, a couple of the others there were into movies, and so Jason had a great time talking and sharing his knowledge - I mostly listened.

Once the meal was over we talked for a little while longer then we needed to get going. Jason was in the new manual chair, and the extra motion was giving him a little bit of a reminder about just where things were most sensitive. We got back to the house, and fortunately it was only slightly misty out, and we didn't get too wet, getting back in the house. Jason went right to his bed and seemed quite happy that he had a real social night out.

Thank you, for all your continued support and prayers.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

March 17, 2012 - Happy St. Patrick's Day (take 2)

Well today was totally different than last year, and much better as far as I am concerned. We really didn't do much for St. Patrick's Day, because tomorrow we have been invited over to a friend's home for a corned beef and cabbage dinner. I think it will be nice, as it will be the first time for Jason to get out and socially interact with folks in a home setting. Well, we did have Jason over to dinner a couple of times when we were still at the Fisher House, but that still isn't the same thing.

It actually rained most of the day today, and a couple of times it rained pretty hard, especially for around here. We went over to the pet store, where they hold dog adoptions every Saturday. I think he would have liked to have adopted one of the dogs that was there, but realized it wasn't a good idea, after we talked about it. With the idea of him going in for surgery(ies), sometime in the relative near future, it wouldn't be a good idea to have a puppy around right now. We'll probably just need to wait for a good service dog to come available, at the right time, and then he can get his dog. Would be nice to know when/if the surgeries are to take place, because right now we just don't know.

Because of the rain we stayed inside most of the rest of the day, and didn't do too much. Then again, if we don't do too much the benefit is there isn't too much to clean up afterward. I suspect that tomorrow will be similar, as long as the weather stays the same as today. With that, I'll close and wish everyone a Happy St. Patrick's Day.

Thank you, for all your continued prayers and continuing support.

Friday, March 16, 2012

March 16, 2012

Well, today was significant, in that Jason and I went to the movies, and actually watched a movie, in a theater. First time that has happened in over a year for Jason and he was pretty excited about it. Excited that is, until we got there... We went and saw John Carter and that part was okay (enjoyed the movie), the challenge was that we went to an AMC Theater and they don't have particularly good accommodations for people in wheelchairs. We ended up sitting close to the screen and off to the right, as that was pretty much the only place we could sit. The theater was nearly empty, so it wasn't a matter of all the other seats taken, it was the only place Jason could go - other than the other space on the other side of the screen, equally as poor. I was hoping that we were going to be able to get a little better seating, like they do at the Regal Theater back home, but that wasn't to be. The Regal has an open space for wheelchairs a little farther back, AND they're in the center, with room for at least four chairs. My guess is that Jason is not going to want to go to that theater again, so we'll just have to look around and hope we can come up with some type of alternative.

If you haven't figured it out yet, Jason didn't have any appointments today, and then tomorrow is Saturday. We didn't have a bunch to do around the house, and the weather was kind of gloomy outside, so we spent most of the day inside, either at the movie or the house. The movie, John Carter, was better than I expected, as the critics didn't seem to like it; and, the most important thing was that Jason enjoyed the movie. It was a bit of an escape for him, as that's what movies are supposed to do.

Tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day, and Jason is in much better shape than he was last year. He is still in bed most of the time, but at least he isn't having to worry about when the next surgery is going to start, at least not right now anyway. God has given me a task and as long as He gives me the strength I will continue to serve in this capacity. Thank you, all for your continued support and prayers.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

March 15, 2012

Well, today started off with Jose not feeling well again, some sort of sinus infection or something along those lines. I said I would rather he not come in, if he is feeling poorly, especially since I don't like sick folks around Jason. As it turned out, it was okay. It was a day for just Jason and I, and it was kind of fun. We both had appointments today, though mine was two hours after his, so once his was done we first went to the pharmacy and got his new Rx and then headed back to the house.

I was a little anxious about leaving Jason alone, but he seemed okay, and he said he was perfectly comfortable with me taking off. I was gone for almost 2 hours, when I got back to the house and he was playing a video games, and up to level 19 or 20. I asked him if he needed anything and he pretty much said no, then said he wanted to head over to Best Buy. I'm beginning to think that Wednesday and Thursday are the two best days to get out and do things, around here anyway. Yesterday the DMV was easy to get through and today Best Buy was almost empty. In both cases it was early afternoon still, so perhaps that had something to do with it too. Well he took a look at a couple of things and we wandered up and down a few of the isles, then we were out of the store. I guess electronic stores are for him what Home Depot is for me (I can spend some time at a Home Depot). Generally I don't like just walking around a store, but in this case it wasn't too bad.

The rest of the day was just kick back and relax again. He is much better than he was yesterday, and though I can still tell he has a cold or something, it is much less than it was before. He took a shower today and I know that had to have made him feel better, all around. I did the dressing change and it was looking better, too, so that made the start of the day that much better. Now we were at the end of the day, and not really much to do, other than clean up around the house some, and make sure all the trash was out (pick up tomorrow). I hope you all had a day as good as ours was.

Thank you, for your continued support and all the prayers being sent our way.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

March 14, 2012

Today was an interesting day, in that Jason had no appointments, though he was supposed to have had one (more on that later), and he has only a couple tomorrow. As a result of this lack of appointments I STRONGLY encouraged him to simply stay in bed and give the wounds a chance to heal up a bit, and tomorrow I'll find out if that was an effective strategy or not. He already told me that he will be taking a shower in the morning, so I'll need to get him up on the early side, about 07:00 if he wants to have breakfast. The down side right now, is that it seems he has caught a cold or some type of sinus issue - again, we'll find out more tomorrow.

On a very good note for today... Jason's truck is now up-to-date with all needed registration, and the new tag is on the license. Most of you are probably not aware of the challenges we have had in first getting his truck here, and then finding the time to get it smogged and registered. The DMV in California is not noted for its fast moving lines, yet today when I went in to do the final registration step and get the tag for the plate, only took about 30 minutes. The first time I went into this particular office it was packed and even with an appointment it took me close to an hour to get through. Today, I went in without an appointment (I know, I should have made one) it went very fast. Of course, for whatever reason there were not many people there today, so I'll take those kinds of gifts when I can.

I also got in a short bike ride and have determined that this part of San Diego is not very bicycle friendly. I know where some trails and routs are, that are much easier to get around with, so I'll start putting the bike in the back of the truck and heading out for a ride that way. Back in Livermore I'd frequently run my errands on the bike, but I won't be doing that here.

Not much else to write about today - we had Turkey Pot Pies for dinner, and they were good (Marie Calendar). Doing my best to get to bed at a reasonable time, and hoping to sleep through the night for a change (woke up at 03:30 today for some reason). Thank you, all for the continued support and prayers. All of it is very much appreciated.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

March 13, 2012

Jason had a couple of appointments today, and we were much more efficient about them this time. Because Jason was up so much on Monday, I didn't want him to be up anymore than he had to be today. There was a little sign on his right side that indicated he was putting too much pressure on that particular wound, so I said it was to be limited as much as possible today, and it seemed to work. We left just a little after 09:00 this morning and we were back by noon, with Jason getting back in bed quickly. He said he never felt uncomfortable, and I was glad for that, I'm just being a bit more protective today. There was nothing discovered, or covered at the appointments today, so not much to write about there, other than him getting to do some different exercises in Occupational Therapy.

Okay, I guess you might be asking yourself, "Wasn't there supposed to be some sort of an update today?" And, the answer is yes (and no). There were two areas that were to get some special attention, and they were the wounds themselves, and the HO. Well, there was some attention, but only the wounds have any kind of a real update. The wounds are not closing like they want them to, so they have suggested a new, experimental, type approach with laser treatment that is supposed to help stimulate closure. Not sure when, exactly it is supposed to begin, but perhaps within the next few days. The issue with the HO is simply that they really don't know what they need to do, at least not at this time. They were working with the Plastics team, and now the discussion is moving over to Orthopedics. It is hoped that the right skill set is here, and we won't have to go anywhere to get the needed treatment, but we will go if needed.

The rest of the day was spent just relaxing and getting caught up on a few things. I will continue to catch up on a few more things, including the registration for his truck. I just need to get it down to be smogged, and then it will be ready to have the actual tags put on the truck. So stay tuned for the next exciting adventure with Jason's truck...

Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers.

Monday, March 12, 2012

March 12, 2012

Okay, for those that are waiting for the update on next steps for Jason's treatment, the news is... we have no update. They didn't call/contact me, so I'm guessing that we will hear something tomorrow. Not to worry, as soon as I know something I'll feel relieved... then I'll get to updating the blog. One more day -

Now for today - There was a meeting that Jason had to attend, and that was over at building 26, with the Sergeant Major. The meeting was on leadership and it lasted for about an hour. Both Jose and I sat in the background, as we really weren't a part of the meeting, though we did get to listen in. Actually, it was one of the best meeting opportunity for Jason, and the other Marines, as it was relaxed and interactive. Jason said it was one of the best he's been to, and wishes he had more like it. The only thing I think was missing was a comment or two from Jason. Considering all the challenges the Army is having right now, the topic is an important one, and I do believe the Sergeant Major was able to make his points, just a good leader should.

The only other thing we had to do was get out to the CDC (Child Development Center), out on 32nd street, and see what the final things are that Jason needs to turn in. Getting day care started is very important to him, and he wants to have something going with a good provider. The original one we had selected is no longer available, so we need to find another. The real problem with all the extra running around is that Jason was up too long, in his chair - at least in my opinion. I'll be working to get this corrected, when I can speak with the people on base. tomorrow.

Tomorrow Jason has a couple of appointments and also we're looking for that update. Thank you, all for all the prayers and support that continue to come our way.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

March 11, 2012

Well, Linda came out this weekend to spend some time with me, Jason and the granddaughters, and now she is on her way back to Livermore. It was a very nice weekend, and we even made it out to Sea World for a short visit. Linda had to get back home, and will be able to get back down here in about two weeks. This time though, she will be staying for more than just a couple of days. I wish there were a way that we could just flip a switch and then we would be back together again on a regular basis, but that isn't going to happen, so we continue to work at it, one day at a time.

Jason has been gaining some independence, and that is a very good thing. I need to know that he can take care of himself, at least for the most part, before I will be comfortable walking away for any length of time. When the boys all grew up and left home I didn't have this kind of separation anxiety, but then those were different circumstances. This coming week we will find out what is going to happen, and when, for the next steps of Jason's treatment. I don't know who is more anxious, him or me, to find out what is in store.

The girls were taken back to their mom's place, where they will be staying for the next two weeks. It was very nice having them around, poopy diapers and all. Having the girls here just adds that little bit more of life to the house, and it has a way of making the place happier - if that makes sense.

No appointment scheduled for tomorrow, so we really don't have much to do, other than head on in to the hospital, where Jason will have to participate in a "formation" of the Wounded Warrior group. Jason said it is like a very intense information sharing session that he is glad only happens once a month. So, thank you for all your prayers and support, as it is continuing to help us along this journey.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

March 10, 2012

One year ago today, Linda and I arrived at Bethesda Naval Hospital, because we were told that Jason was now on his way to the U.S., and that he had stabilized. It was the beginning of a very long journey for me, in that I have only been home one time in this past year, and that time was for less than an hour (it was when I flew up to Livermore to help Linda drive the truck back down here. I have been doing my best to maintain this blog on a daily basis, and have appreciated all the continued support of so many of you. I keep tabs on the stats, and there have been days when it shows as much as almost 500 hits have happened (that was early on) and as low as 90 hits in a single day. Over the year there have been nearly 71,000, so that shows that there is a level of interest in what is happening with Jason. Next week (Monday or Tuesday) there is to be a next, major directional change in the overall treatment, so perhaps we will be looking at more surgeries, or they'll tell us that there is nothing more they can do (my guess is that there will be things they can and want to do). Anyway, what I guess I'm telling everyone, stay tuned for more exciting updates on Jason and his progress.

Today, we went to Sea World, with the girls. The girls will be headed back to their mom next week, so today seemed the best time to go. The weather is great right now, and Grandma is here - What could be better? The girls had a good time, though we really didn't stay too long. They both got tired quickly, and it seemed like a good time to get Jason back off the chair. We did get some pictures, and I am hopeful that I will have some time to get them on to the blog tomorrow, but you never know what is going to happen with the time, especially with the time change coming tonight.

Thank you, for all your continued support and also all the prayers.

Friday, March 9, 2012

March 9, 2012

Well, apologies to those who sit up and wait for the next update to come, as this one is much later than I would normally do. The challenge this evening was that Linda was flying in on Southwest and the flight was delayed by 45 minutes. I was driving around the airport for just a little over 1/2 an hour when I finally parked and went inside, to find out what was going on. I saw that it was delayed so I waited around where the people were coming up from the flights and in a few minutes (about 15) she came up the walk-way, and I was relieved (she looked like she was too). Anyway, we're both back at the house now, along with Jason and the girls and the girls are asleep now and I can work on the blog.

Jason only had one appointment today, with OT, where he was to work on his hand and arm strength. It was a good visit, and it went far to wear down his arms a bit. If you watch what is going on with the treatment you would think, "what's the big deal?" But, the devices they hold in their hands is a gyroscope device that effectively makes them move their hands and arms in ways they don't necessarily want to. After doing it for 15 minutes your arms and hands are pretty well worn out and you feel like you've had a good work out. I know, because I've used them as well.

While Jason was at OT I was over taking care of some paperwork that will allow the girls to get into day care. Because it is a government certified facility there are a bunch more regulations that need to be followed, and there is a stack of paper that has to be filled in for both girls, with some of it being notarized. At this point, about 98% of everything is done, and the rest will be done early next week, with a hope that it is on Monday. The getting of the girls into day care is a priority for Jason, as he recognizes the need for social development, and that is one of the main benefits of going to a day care.

Otherwise, that is pretty much it for the day. We have a big day tomorrow as we're all going to Sea World, at least for a few hours. Not sure how much Jason will be able to tolerate, or, for that matter, how much the girls will be able to tolerate. I just know they all can tolerate more than me... Hey, I'm the grandpa... ;-)

Thank you, for all your continued support and prayers. Have a great weekend.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

March 8, 2012

Today was a good day for Jason, as we began the morning off early, due to the fact that he was contacted last night and requested to be at PT by 08:30. There was a general coming in, and the general specifically requested to see Jason. They didn't provide much other information than that, and to be honest, Jason's first reaction was, "What did I do?" When we got there we found out that the general probably wasn't going to be showing up until about 09:30, and possibly a little later. That was okay, since we hadn't seen any of the PT folks in a while, and it gave us a chance to just sit and talk with them. There were some other guys there, who were being worked with, so it was a busy environment, and that made it a little more comfortable for me anyway. We got to talk with the other patient who was requested to be there, as well as a few of the other guys. We knew some of them, and others we did not. When the general came in, with his group, we found out it was Major General Dana. If we had known that I could have contacted him before hand and found out more specifically when we needed to be there. General Dana has been keeping tabs on Jason since he first heard about Jason, back in Afghanistan, and we actually first got to meet him while we were back in Bethesda. He has made it a point to come visit with Jason several times, and we've kind of gotten to know him more as a friend. He sat down on the mat where Jason was exercising and we got a bunch of pictures taken (I was in most of them, as one of his aids did all the picture taking, with my camera). We talked about all kinds of stuff and he was saying how impressed he was with Jason, and his development. All around, it was an excellent visit.

To finish our stay at the hospital today, Jason also had an OT appointment. Today was a little different in that they let him make a couple of tortillas from scratch and then create a couple of quesadillas. I got to sample, and Jason got to eat most of them - they were good! When we were done with the OT work, we went to take care of a couple little errands and then over to pick up the girls from day care. At this point we just headed back to the van and then back home. The girls were at that point where they were kind of tired, but were now excited and couldn't go to sleep. We played with them, and though it might sound counter intuitive, it actually helped to calm them down, so they could take their naps.

Not much else gong on, and tomorrow Jason has just the one appointment. The Marines will be taking Jason to his appointment, and then bringing him back home. I'll stay home with the girls and do whatever we feel like doing - maybe go to the park or just play around the house. Anyway, it should be an easy day. Thank you, for all your continued prayers and support.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

March 7, 2012 - 1 Year Ago it all began

We had a pretty good day today. Jason didn't want to do anything to recognize the significance of the day, so we didn't do much of anything that was out of the ordinary. Shortly after breakfast we took the girls over to the park, so that they could play outside for awhile, and it was good for us to get out of the house, too. When we first arrived at the play area there were two moms sitting on a bench, chatting while their kids were playing. It was actually quite nice since it was a large play area and only a few kids playing. After about 1/2 an hour, or so, it was like somebody hit the green light or opened a holding area gate. Within a five minute window there were another 20 kids that showed up, and then they just kept on coming. We stay for another 1/2 hour or so, and then we decided to head on back.

Stacy was having the time of her life, constantly running around and being very social with the other kids. I saw her get at least 3 games of tag going, simply by running up to someone and saying, "Tag, now you have to catch me." Then take off running in the other direction. The other kid she would tag, boy or girl, would usually just stand there for a few seconds, to figure out what had just happened, then take off after her. The slides and the climbing areas all said, "For ages 5 to 12." but that didn't slow Stacy down, not even slightly.

Jackie was having a great time too, just at a slower speed. I helped her up the slides, and she really enjoyed them, for the most part. Once, her tennis shoe kind of "grabbed" the side of the slide and it made her kind of pitch to one side, and she didn't like that. Otherwise she was having a good time going all over the place, though not chasing anyone. She was able to climb the steps and other areas, and had no fear of doing any of it. And, yes, I did get some pictures, though I may have to wait until I get a little more time to load them up, since the days have been getting away from me with all the things we been doing.

The unintended outcome of the visit to the play area (park) was that both girls went down for their naps willingly and slept for a couple of hours. Jason and I were guessing that it was a result of them doing all the running around.

I had to make a trip into the base, to deliver some information that is needed for the evaluation that is going on. Since I was going in Jason asked me to pick up his new wheelchair. I also had to get a new pass for the vehicle, so the quick trip ended up taking a little longer than originally planned, but it got some of those little nagging errands out of the way. Then after I got back, Jason got a call from the folks at PT, who asked if he could come in early tomorrow. Seems there are some special guests coming who would like to see Jason specifically. This would normally be a great thing, except I have to head out for a meeting in the afternoon, and had things all set up for a different schedule. Now I'm going to be pushing it a little to make sure it all works. Oh well, best laid plans...

We'll be getting up early tomorrow, so that is why I was able to get to the post a little earlier today. I just hope there are no other changes... ;-)

Thank you, for all your continued support and all the prayers you've been sending our way.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

March 6, 2012

In about 9 hours it will have been exactly a year ago that I received that fateful call. I remember it vividly, in that I was dressed to go to work (it was the first day of a new position) and I was feeling really good. I was standing in my kitchen and Linda was down in the garage with the day care kids who had just arrived (the garage was converted to a large play area for the kids). The phone rang and I answered in my happy voice, feeling like everything was going in the right direction, finally; then the caller said, "Is this the parent of Sgt. Jason Ross?" I immediately didn't like what I was hearing and slightly hesitated and said, "Yes, I'm his father." When he told me that Jason had been significantly injured my knees almost buckled. I quickly went out to the garage and got Linda's attention. Fortunately there were only two kids at this point so it was relatively easy for the two of us to sit down, at the table and listen to the call, on speaker. The Gunny began to tell us about some of Jason's injuries, and let us know that they were working to get him stable and that they would be in contact with us with updates, once they had them. We were to receive calls at least three times a day, and we did. It was probably the worst two days of our lives, not knowing what was going on, other than what they were telling us over the phone.

Fast forward to today and Jason is now doing so much better, though he is still far from being recovered. There is now another group of medical folks who are working to figure out what it is they need to do, to give him back some quality in his life. I provided them with some requested information today and they will be meeting on Friday to see if there is more they should be doing, or can do. We will hear the result next week, and we'll know more about some of the "next" steps Jason will be able to take on this journey we are on.

Today ended on a positive note, with a visit from Katie, of Marine Moms, out of Bethesda. She came out to visit with her sons, one of whom is headed off to Afghanistan, and got in contact with me. She asked if she could come over and visit with us, as she would really like to see Jason. Of course I said it would be great to have her come over, and then she took us out to dinner. The girls enjoyed her visit (especially since she brought them gifts... ;-))and this allowed Katie to see just how big the girls have grown, since she saw them in Bethesda. About the only thing that wasn't aligned was that Linda wasn't here, and Katie and Linda did seem to hit it off really well when they were in Bethesda. Anyway, the visit was nice and I did get a few pictures (I'll post tomorrow), so any of the rest of you, who might happen to come out this way, please let me know, we'd be happy to see you too.

Thank you all, for all the continued support and prayers for Jason and the family. We have been challenged, big time, yet we have also been able to see some blessing out of all this, and will continue to work to make Jason's life a happy and strong one.

Monday, March 5, 2012

March 5, 2012

Today was one of those days where we just did whatever we wanted to do, and really didn't have anything we "needed" to do. I wrote yesterday that we were going to go and find a couple of bathing suits for the girls, and sure enough we did. Actually what we did was head over to the Naval station on Coronado Island, where they have a nice Commissary and NEX (Navy Exchange). The NEX was more like a shopping mall, as it had different stores, as well as a food court. We walked around a bit and quickly found the suits for the girls. Stacy was having a great time getting to pick out her own suit. One of the sales ladies was nice enough to help out and I think that actually made Stacy feel a little more comfortable. Jackie didn't really understand all of what was going on, she just enjoyed all the activity. Once that was accomplished Jason wanted to check out a few of the other areas; made a few more purchases; and, then we headed over to the food court. One of the vendors there was Five Guys, and so we ordered some hamburgers and french fries then sat down to eat. we had to help the girls with the food, but we all ended up having plenty to eat and drink, then headed back home.

The nurse, who is supposed to come in and be with Jason was ill (bad cold) so I had asked him to leave as I didn't want him around Jason or the girls (me either). That was okay, though, as we didn't have a lot to do and Jason and I were having a good time with the girls anyway. Jason was able to take a shower today, and felt much better for having done so, and he smelled better too... ;-) Jason is getting more comfortable with his current condition and being around the girls, as he is now picking them up, from his position in the chair. I admit I was a bit nervous at first when he did it the first time, but now I'm much more comfortable, as is he.

Tomorrow we will be taking the girls to the day care at the hospital, as we have a few things to take care of there. We will probably also take them there a couple more times this week, but otherwise they will be hanging with us. Jason is showing some very good signs that he can be a very good dad, even from the chair, and that make me very happy. Thank you, for all your continued support and prayers...

Sunday, March 4, 2012

March 4, 2012

Today was a beautiful sunny day here, in San Diego, and post card perfect. We didn't have to do anything or go anywhere today, and effectively just stayed at home the entire day. I did walk over to the new day care provider's home, where we are hoping the girls will end up going (nothing is final until it is final - apologies to Yogi Berra). When we, the girls and I, walked past the community pool Stacy got very excited and wanted to go in... immediately! I explained to her that to go in the water we would first need to have bathing suits on, and she was satisfied with that, for a little while. She brought it up again, a little later in the day, and I guess Jason and I may be going shopping for a bathing suit for Stacy and Jackie. When we returned to the house we didn't do much else except relax and play some games with the girls. Jason played a memory game with Stacy, and she was very happy. Jackie was running around, all over the house. Jackie has a real strong affinity to books, so she was almost always carrying one with her. Between the two girls I would have to say that Stacy will be the leader and Jackie will be the academic. Of course I guessed what I thought my own sons would do, and was wrong on every count with them... though they all have done well.

Tomorrow we really don't have much to do, much like today, so we'll probably spend most of the day again at the house. We do need to get out for some shopping, and I have to take care of a couple small errands, but otherwise another relaxed day, and that's okay by me. Jason is doing well, and his pain management is working well, since his pain levels remain tolerable. We have a couple of appointments this week, but overall it will be an easy week - I hope.

Thank you, for all your continued support and prayers - Jason was talking just the other day that as he was watching some of the other guys, that he felt he was one of the fortunate ones. He also said he knows that God was watching out for him on that fateful day. Me, I think I would have been very angry, but he stays positive.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

March 3, 2012

We've been in San Diego for more than four months now, and today was actually the first time I have been close to the beach. Well, closer than just driving by on the freeway. Jason and Bridgette wanted to get their taxes done today, so I dropped Jason off at the tax preparer and then took the girls to Coronado Island. Now today was the second time for me to go over to the island (first time was with Jason), and when we got back, they were still working on the taxes. I just continued on and went out towards the beach, and had I gone another block (maybe a little less) I would have been driving on sand. It was actually pretty exciting as I do enjoy being on and around the water, and the smell of the ocean is wonderful. The only bad part was that we couldn't stay, and had to get right back to pick up Jason. This time when we got back Jason was ready. He was able to come out within a couple of minutes of getting back, and then we were on our way to our next stop... the pet store.

No, Jason didn't buy any pets, he did want to check out the dogs that were being offered, though. The rescue organizations all come around on Saturdays and display the animals they want to put up for adoption. There was even a parrot rescue group there with this really cool green parrot. Actually it had several other colors, but the green was the main color, and it had this tail that must have been at least a meter, possibly more, in length. It was a very friendly parrot, and even climbed on to my arm. Under different circumstances I would have been tempted to adopt it. As it was, Jason looked around at all the different dogs, and there was one dog that he seemed very interested in. I think that if he could have taken it home he probably would have. I suggested that he just take down the information and he could possibly get back with them later. Once finished we just went on back to the house. It was past lunch time anyway, and I was getting hungry.

After lunch the girls went down for a nap, and I guess they were kind of tired. They both went to sleep pretty quickly. While they slept we had a visit from Victor Juhasz's son Ben, and his friend, also named Jason. They actually stayed and visited with Jason for a couple of hours, and I think it did him a great deal of good to get a chance to talk with some fellow Marines. I ended up being the "mean" parent and saw that Jason was getting worn down, so I asked them to wrap it up so he could get some rest. Ben apologized for keeping Jason for so long, as did the other Jason, and they said they would try to get back when they returned. I really did hate stopping the conversation, but Jason still needs to rest.

Not much else happened tonight. We had dinner, and I told the girls another story, then they went to bed. I came up to take care of this blog, and then I'm going to bed. Thank you, for all your continued support and prayers.

Friday, March 2, 2012

March 2, 2012

Wow! Into March already. Today was a very nice day, weather-wise. We started off slow with no appointments to worry about, so we were just relaxed. Jason wanted to take care of some small business over at the bank, and we left the house at about 10:00 this morning. Our first stop was to drop the girls over at Day Care, as they enjoy the social interaction, and it does make it easier to get around when you're in a business, such as a bank. The second stop was the bank. While there Jason received a call, from the hospital, letting us know his custom chair was in, and they wanted us to come by to pick it up. Then they said something about getting a picture taken, and this kind of surprised us, but we figured we'd go to see what it was all about. Actually, Jason said they told him that we had been told about the chair earlier and neither Jason or I had spoken to anyone about the chair coming in. Anyway, when he was done with the banking we just drove back over to the hospital to take a look at the new chair. It is pretty cool how they were able to paint it, and you can really see the extra engineering that went into the chair. That "extra" engineering is part of the challenge... the chair won't fit in the back of the van, so we didn't bring it home.

The pictures they were talking about were not related to the chair at all, so for a little while we were even more confused than before. As it turned out the pictures they want are of Jason's wounds, and I have already taken some pictures so more pictures won't be needed. I can just send the ones I already have. I also let them know about the model of Jason's HO, and how the doctors all appreciate us having it, to see exactly what is doing on. This is for a possible project that they want to do for Jason, and others, to help rebuild what they can, providing better quality of life for the guys.

When we were all done with the walking around and talking to all the different people it was just about the time to pick the girls up. Well, I could have taken Jose and Jason back to the house and then turned around and come back for the girls but that just didn't seem like a good idea. At the point of picking up the girls we still had Jason's new chair and they rode it back to the van, and that's when we discovered that it wouldn't fit. I ended up taking it back up to the folks in C5 and they said they would hang on to it until next week, when we come to get it.

I let Stacy help with dinner tonight, and it turned out to be something close to chili-mac, just not very spicy. It was actually quite tasty and I kind of wish we had gotten more stuff, so there would have been more. Oh well, next time I will know better. Because we picked the girls up earlier than we actually planned, they didn't have as much of a nap as they normally get. That resulted in them going to bed right after their bath - though I still gave them their bed time story. And that was pretty much our day.

Thank you, all for all the prayers and all the continued support.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

March 1, 2012

Well, I guess they're having some tests or playing war games or doing something over at the MCRD (Marine Corps Recruit Depot), because it took me nearly 15 minutes just to log on to the net. I'm just hopeful that I can get this post out tonight.

Anyway, Jason had a couple of appointments today, and they both turned out to be good for him. The first was with the Wound Care Clinic, where we got to meet with the Plastics doctor and we discussed some of the future for Jason. Some of it was very exciting, and then other information was pretty much no change. The exciting stuff was the work that has been going on with the different medical schools, and the research that has been involved with regenerative cells, such as skin and muscle tissue. If they can come up with a way for Jason to regenerate some of his own muscle tissue it would do wonders for his recovery. Of course some of the work is down the road by a year or more, so it isn't something we should be seeing anytime soon. The work on the skin regeneration, though, is something that is much closer and Jason could even possibly be a candidate for the study - but I might be jumping the gun a little on that. On the not so positive side is the work being discussed about surgeries for Jason. First any surgery is going to be a little on the rough side, since he has already had close to 100, plus another 80+ procedures. To say the least, Jason isn't too excited about going under the knife again, anytime soon. Then, along with that, they are not even sure that any work they do will provide any relief for Jason. So, as you can see, there is no easy answer for anyone to fall back on.

The girls got to spend some time with the drop in day care, and even though it isn't a "regular" day care, they do get to do some projects and it gives them a chance to build on their social skills. The folks who run it now know all of us pretty well, and they all have come to love Stacy and Jackie. We should be able to get the girls into a more regular day care in a matter of another week at the most, though I am pushing to have it completed sooner.

Tomorrow there are no appointments for Jason, so we get to relax a bit, and I can catch up on a bunch of the laundry that has been building. Actually, I did four loads tonight, and I have a bunch to fold, just sitting on the couch. I think Jason would like to be able to help with this task, but because of his limited mobility he isn't able to work the washer or dryer, and then folding is a totally different challenge for him. Eventually we will have something set up, but right now it just doesn't exist.

Thank you, for all your prayers and continued support - it is much appreciated.