Some Details

June 2, 2008 at 12:57 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

When I last posted, Sunday morning, I was running off to Tel Aviv. So here’s what happened yesterday.

Sunday morning the doctors came on rounds at about 7 am. Gidon was still sleeping when they came in, so in his haze of just-woke-up he did manage to ask Dr. Constantini what we were waiting for to be released. Dr. C said that Chayim Zvi had to be walking around. When Gidon told me that at about 8:30 am I said, “Ha! In a few days maybe.”

Later in the morning Gidon met with Dr. Constantini and asked all the questions I had written down the night before, plus any of his own. Chayim Zvi had ALREADY gotten out of bed and moved around a bit with his walker. I was freaking out. I didn’t feel like we knew how to deal with him at home – what if he wasn’t drinking enough? What if he refused to sit up at all? How would he take travel in the car? But mostly, “I’M NOT READY TO BE THROWN OUT OF THE NEST!” It was all moving too fast for me. Dr. Constantini is a consumate psychologist besides being a neurosurgeon – though I don’t know if he’s had any formal training in psychology. He mentioned that he wasn’t completely satisfied with how CZ was getting around, so we might wait till the next day. I think that was more for me than for CZ.

At the same time (I think) or maybe afterwards, Daniel was talking to CZ. Daniel is the psychologist assigned to the ward. He’s a real angel. Daniel spent a long time talking to CZ. I have no idea what they discussed, but not long after that CZ went from saying, “Maybe I’ll go home tomorrow” to “Let’s go home.” Daniel said it was like the Rebbe Nachman Rooster Prince parable. In any case, it had great results and we are very grateful to Daniel.

So at 12:25 I get this phone call. Come now. Come immediately. CZ will not go home till you get here. Wow. So I quickly check the bus schedule. A bus would arrive any minute, or I could take the next one 20 minutes later. I opted to take the later bus and quickly managed to:

  1. Write a quick blog post.
  2. Shut down the computer.
  3. Brush my teeth and fix my hair.
  4. Hang a small load of laundry to dry.
  5. Put up another load of (already sorted) laundry.
  6. Do a little bit of straightening up in the house.
  7. Grab a couple of tote bags to hold the stuff we’d be bringing home.
  8. Catch the bus!

While waiting for the bus I started making phone calls.

The bus came by 12:50. I was on the phone most of the way into Jerusalem. I got off the bus at the Jerusalem Central Bus Station at about 1:35. I wanted lunch, but I wanted to get the next bus (I had just missed the 1:30 bus and so needed to catch the 1:45). I managed to pick up some food and drink and get on the bus just one minute before it pulled out. The bus made great time and I disembarked at the North Tel Aviv train station at 2:35. Another 15 minutes and I was in the hospital room. Two hours 25 minutes from when Gidon had phoned.

Chayim Zvi – oh joy! – was playing on his GameBoy for the first time in almost a week. He was dressed. We had had a Tshirt made for him: “I’m just a regular kid” in Hebrew and English. He was wearing that and nudging me to take him to Toys ‘R’ Us to buy him a new cartridge for his GameBoy. We had promised him this because he was such a trooper through the whole thing. We also wanted to go to the bookstore because this week is hebrew book week (as I think I already mentioned). We wanted to exchange a couple of books that he’d gotten as gifts. We were just waiting for the release letter.

Three o’clock is shift change time, so the nurses are very busying giving and getting information. Gidon took some of our stuff down to the car. When he came back we decided to go to the mall and come back for the letter. We got CZ into the wheelchair and off we went.

By the time we got to the mall (down the elevator, out of the building and then a few minutes walk) CZ was already not feeling great. It was by far the longest he’d sat up since the surgery and he was ready to lay down again. Unfortunately this was not a reclining wheelchair. We still managed to pick out books even though he had no energy (seeing Curious George in Hebrew was great – he loves Curious George). Then off to get the GameBoy game. We picked up a couple of gifts for the siblings, and then finally FINALLY went down to the car. Chayim Zvi made himself comfortable laying across the back seat and I buckled him in somehow. Off we went. It was already almost 4:30. Traffic in Tel Aviv was a little heavy, but we were home by 5:50.

Now he’s installed in his room, attached to his GameBoy every waking moment. He’s eaten a little today, and is drinking, and is mostly laying down. We are trying to organize the paperwork for the follow up doctor visits (in Tel Aviv) and to get a physical therapist to come to the house (or we’ll even take him to the clinic here in Ma’aleh Adumim).

I hope to be at work for a few hours this week between doctor visits. I stayed home today just to see that everything was in order and just in case he wanted me. Next week is Shavuot and the company will be closed through Tuesday, so I guess I can’t really start thinking about routine until after that. Then summer starts and we have to find stuff for everyone to do from July 1st to September 1st.

Unless something changes drastically between today and Thursday, I don’t expect to post again until we see the neurosurgeons. I hope Gidon will have time to write HIS side of our last day in the hospital.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how wonderful the staff was at Ichilov – even the cleaners were kind and friendly. The nurses were amazing – especially Diab the male nurse. He really had an affinity for Chayim Zvi and was very helpful. Daniel the psychologist was exceptional. Dr. Constantini and staff – especially the smilely guys Dr. Xiao (Shoo – he’s Chinese) and Dr. Shou’ash (I THINK that’s what his name is – he’s Indian).  And thanks to Elisheva and all the kids who held down the fort and cleaned up the house and their rooms before Shabbat, to all the neighbors who helped (Doris, Shevi, Eliana, and I don’t know who else), to our neighborhood Chesed committee who provided meals. Thanks to the families that hosted our kids this past Shabbat: Paula and Lazer Stern, Rich and Elana Dressler, Michele and Shelly Wolgel, Batsheva and Haim Stern, and Danny and Alison Hadar. Thanks to Gila Weiss who was ready to let us take over her apartment, lent us a phone, and visited. Thanks to the Kaplans and the Witkins who visited. Thanks to everyone who called, who didn’t call, who wanted to call or visit.

Thanks especially to everyone to prayed. That was the most important thing.

Biggest bestest thanks to G-d our Father in Heaven, who is good and does good. We thank you for every breath and every moment and praise Your name without pause.



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  1. Todah l’el that he is home…no parent can hear of such an ordeal without feeling incredible empathy.
    Refuah shlema.

  2. When I read what you did just before you ran for the bus, I was absolutely exhausted! Like all good mothers, you are a true multi-tasker.
    I am so happy that Chayim Tzvi is home now. May he continue to improve day by day, and have a refuah shelemah. Now, try getting some rest!

  3. Getting him that T-shirt…such a very touching thing you did, and while busy with all this! CZ has got two amazing parents.

    Happy birthday to Elisheva who held down the fort. She really is Sweet 16!

  4. Dev — you are AWESOME!!

    The t-shirt idea was BRILLIANT!!!

    May CZ continue to improve daily, until he has a refuah shlaymah!!

    Hag HaBikurim Sameach!!

    Love always,

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