Children Christianity/Religion Medical/Technical My Family

Weaning Rebecca From Her Ventilator

The ICU nurse today told me that every morning the parameters of each patient on a ventilator are checked with the view in mind of weaning the patient off the vent as soon as is possible. They were looking for Rebecca’s parameters to be in the range of 60, but hers were only 33 this morning, so they did not try to wean her at that time.

Once when Shawnna and I went in to visit this afternoon, we found Rebecca in great distress, trying to sit upright and indicating she could not breathe. She couldn’t talk of course, but made gestures, and we easily figured out what she was saying. Both the nurse and the respiratory therapist checked her, suctioned her lungs and gave her breathing treatment medication early. Most of her numbers were acceptable, but she was in obvious distress. “Sometimes asthmatics trap air in their lungs,” the nurse told me, “and I believe we’ll try putting her on “blow-by” (edit: The procedure they used may have been different from “blow-by”, I’m not sure. The nurse used a term I do not recall. It may have been that Rebecca was taking her own breaths, but with pressure support. I try to be accurate with any medical information I post, but I am a lay person and am not in full understanding of all the procedures.)and see if she functions better for a few minutes breathing on her own. And she did for a short time, then had to be fully ventilated again for the rest of the day. But she has made progress, and they will probably try to wean her again tomorrow—if her parameters permit that at all…which I am believing will be the case.

Rebecca is a sweetheart, and the finest daughter anyone could have. She has faced numerous challenges throughout her life, but has emerged strong and uncomplaining. She’s a dynamic fighter. We have God to lean on, lots of friends and a dear family for support.

Tomorrow will be a better day. I’m sure of it.

Update Sunday:

12:30 AM Sleeping well.

4:30 AM Sleeping well. Slept all night. Good numbers.

8:09 AM Nurse reports Rebecca’s condition to be the same as yesterday. Morning parameters have not yet been calculated.

9:40 AM On this site at the British Journal of Anesthesia is interesting information concerning weaning patients from ventilators.

Children Christianity/Religion Medical/Technical My Family

An Unexpected Intubation

At 2:00 this morning, the doctor gave the order to intubate our only daughter, Rebecca. She has been in the Loma Linda University Hospital since last Sunday with a severe asthma attack, but at our last visit yesterday, the doctor came in, agreed with Rebecca that she was better, and spoke of moving her from the ICU onto a different floor. But during the night, her heart rate increased to a dangerous point, and just before intubation, she was assessed to not be moving air at all.

Because of some communication problem at the hospital, for which they have profusely apologized, they failed to notify us of Rebecca’s increased problems, and we only found out later in the morning through Dearrah who had called to talk with Rebecca.

We contacted all our children, of course, and Andrew and his family came right away, as did Dearrah, Steve’s wife. Steve and Michael are out of state. Jerry and I spent most of the day with Rebecca, and a short while ago left the hospital, bringing four youngsters home with us, including Nathaniel, Rebecca’s only child. Andrew and Shawnna are still at the hospital, but will come here in a few hours.

Rebecca is a bit better this evening, or we would not have left her at all, and I will call the hospital throughout the night. Those of you who know how, please pray for her.

Update: At midnight, when I called, Rachel, her nurse, said she was stable and that her condition was much the same.

2:30 am Saturday Rebecca is not sleeping well, so Rachel plans to increase her narcotics.

6:30 am Rachel tells me that Rebecca slept from around 4:00 and is asleep now. All her vital signs are good.

Christianity/Religion My Family Photography Science & Technology Travel

Echo, Space Tourism and Heaven

We were in Rockford, Illinois in 1960, and I recall standing in the back yard to watch Echo move across the night sky. I understood it was history in the making, and I gazed long at that friendly light. In the darkness, as Jerry and I stood there with Steve who was almost 3 years old, I remember singing this little song:

Little Sir Echo, how do you do. Hello. Hello. Little Sir Echo, how do you do. Hello. Hello. Hello. Hello. Won’t you come over and play…..

Anousheh Ansari

Ms Ansari replaced a Japanese businessman on the trip

Soyuz launch

The first woman space tourist has blasted off on a Russian Soyuz rocket from Baikonur in Kazakhstan. The mission is carrying Iranian-born businesswoman, Anousheh Ansari, along with a fresh crew for the International Space Station (ISS).

Ms Ansari, a 40-year-old US citizen, is thought to have paid at least $20m (£10.6m) for the mission.

All exciting, and although I may not have the nerve to do so, I would love to be a passenger on such a ship. But I’m actually waiting for the most spectacular space flight of all.

Its story is told in I Thessalonians 4:16-17:

“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”

My Family Photography Social Travel

Misplaced Car Found After Seven Months!


Perhaps you have never lost your car, but Jerry and I have (really, it has been Jerry, but since we are “one flesh”…). On one occasion I was with him. We were in Pittsburg, (northern California) and we were taking BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) to San Francisco to spend the day. Jerry dropped several of us off at the station and parked the car. We had a wonderful, exhausting day in San Francisco, and then in the deepening night, when we had returned to the Pittsburg station, we stood forlorn and nervous…because…we could not locate our car. Finally, an attendant came to our rescue, and in a vehicle with a rotating flashing light, took Jerry riding around the gigantic parking lot…and found the missing car. Jerry was astounded, being absolutely sure he had parked it on the other side of the property.. I won’t even tell you about the other time, (except that he was so positive his car had been stolen, he was ready to call the police, but the proprietor of the place talked him out of it until they searched again!) but neither of them compares to this hilarious story. I read it yesterday, and when I saw it again today I grew weak with laughter as I tried to tell Jerry about it. I emailed it to him, and am blogging it here for you.

September 16, 2006

MOTORIST Eric King has been reunited with his car — seven months after FORGETTING where he parked it.Absent-minded Eric, 57, left his black X-reg Ford Focus in a space in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, last February so he could walk into the town centre.But when he had finished his sightseeing trip he couldn’t remember the name of the residential road he had parked the car in or where it was.

Eric searched for the £3,000 motor for four hours before catching a coach back to his home over 60 miles away in Milton Keynes, Bucks.

He reported the Focus missing to police but could not make an insurance claim as it had not been stolen.

He returned to Bury St Edmunds TEN TIMES to look for his motor, often booking himself into bed and breakfasts overnight — and lost two stone tramping the streets in his quest.

He finally got the car back this week after it was reported abandoned where he had left it — in Blackbird Drive on the Moreton Hall estate.

Two neighbours both assumed the car left outside their homes belonged to the other, eventually alerting the local council when they realised neither was the owner.

St Edmundsbury Council officials notified a delighted Eric, who caught a coach back to the town and was taken to his car.

Location ... town's Blackbird Drive
Location … town’s Blackbird Drive

Its road tax had expired but the car was undamaged apart from a flat battery — and started first time with jump leads.

Planes enthusiast Eric had only stopped in the town on the way back from a show at nearby Rougham Airfield.

Last night he said: “I had almost given up hope of finding the car again but I knew it must be there somewhere. In future I’ll make sure I park in places I know I can find.”

Council officer Andrew Harvey said: “We got an e-mail about this abandoned car.

“I remembered Mr King had been in contact in February to report he had lost one. We were delighted to reunite him with it rather than towing it away to be crushed.”

Back in Focus … Eric consults street map after being reunited with motor
Back in Focus ... Eric consults street map after being reunited with motor

Medical/Technical My Family Science & Technology Social

Questionable State of the Unconscious Mind

I recall clearly the first time I heard of anyone withholding food and water from a critically ill patient. The incident came through a family in one of the churches Jerry pastored, where a quite elderly parent was critically ill and not expected to live. Although I did not say anything, for it would have been inappropriate for me to do so, I was horrified. That the basic necessities of food and water would be withheld from anyone, I believed to be wrong then, and continue with that thought to this moment.

Now comes this astonishing development, reported yesterday, in which a woman who has been in a vegetative state for five months could clearly hear what others said, and while she could not physically move, her brain waves were consistent with those who understood such commands.

Woman in coma plays tennis


Friday, 8 September 2006


Brain scans of a woman who has been in a vegetative state for five months show her imagining playing tennis and responding to commands, researchers report.

They say their study, published today in the journal Science, shows the woman was conscious despite her coma-like state, although several experts disagree. Read more here.

Such issues strike a vulnerable spot in me, for when Jerry was struck down by a drunk driver, and was severely injured, the doctors intimated that we should consider how long we would keep him on life support. It is the epitome of grace and mercy that Jerry recovered and we did not have to entertain such thoughts.

Although I can’t imagine being able to do it, I have no quarrel with those who elect to remove their loved ones from life support, when there seems to be no hope. But to withhold the basic ingredients of life—food and water—I am in total disagreement from allowing such a thing. I understand that is not the issue here, but these new findings confirm my thoughts that no unconscious person should have food and water denied.

Children My Family Photography

Ethan Is One

Ethan Buxton, originally uploaded by Shirley Buxton. ( I didn’t take these pictures. Joel sent them to me, and I do not know who the photographer is.)

Ethan is the son of Joel, who is the son of Stephen, my eldest, which again makes Ethan my great-grandchild. Joel and Aisha live in San Diego, and we should see them in the next few weeks.

He’s a charmer and just celebrated his first birthday. He growls now, especially if you don’t feed him fast enough. 🙂

Children Food My Family My Home Weather/Nature

Why Rice Krispies Go Snap, Crackle, Pop!

(Edit November 11, 2006. It appears that part of this article has disappeared into the nethers. Sorry about that. )
Suggestions that explain this noisy cereal.

Well, why not? I have five visiting youngins’ today, one wanted oatmeal, but dry cereal won out. I pulled out the boxes, and, with great consideration, these breakfast cereal affectionados made their gourmet choices. Alas, not a box of Rice Krispies on the place, although there were other crunchy morsels upon which they chomped.

Lunch will be better. Still a nip in the air, but it’s bright and sunny, besides, lots of community jackets, caps, mittens and boots reside year round here at Granny’s. When the youngsters come, they, with particular discernment, pick what they need. Works great. In addition, we have planned ourselves a picnic. Just inside the woods at the end of our street will be our dining spot. We’re hauling everything in by wooden wagon, its sides outfitted with red sideboards.

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