GBS Update: Friday 28th May 2010

From Luke Dictated 7pm 27/5/10

It’s strange writing an e mail, which I know reaches many people who I have not even met. The amazing thing about the last few months is that as my parents have kept you all up to date on my condition, we have known the powerful effect of all your prayers whether I have met you in the past or not.

We decided that I would write today’s update with a specific focus in my mind for this bank holiday weekend. So the next update we plan to send will be on Tuesday, unless there is any significant news to report between now and then of course. Our hope is that as we all join together to focus our prayers on this one critical area, that there will be significant improvements to report back to you in the days ahead.

I’d like to ask you all to pray for my breathing. I remember in the early days of being ventilated my lungs fighting the ventilator. It was a real challenge to ‘let go’ of my breathing and allow the machine to take care of it, although it was a great blessing all the time my physical condition was worsening and I was increasingly losing movement in my body. In the same way that it was a fight to get on to the ventilator, it’s similarly proving to be a fight to get off it. As one consultant said to me this week, if it weren’t for the fact that I was ventilated I could easily be cared for at home. Although he was exaggerating slightly, by putting it this way he helped me to understand that getting off the ventilator is the next crucial step in my journey, something you already know from mum’s last e mail.

I thought it might be helpful for you in praying about this if I outlined the steps that need to happen in order for me to breathe by myself.

Firstly, the pressure of airflow that the ventilator gives me in each breath will need to be reduced from 8 to 5. While the pressure is being reduced they will gradually be increasing the amount of time I spend off the ventilator with a speaking valve and trache mask (which pumps a light flow of a small amount of oxygen through the trache opening.) At the moment I’m having this 4 times a day for 5-10 minutes each time. I will need to be confident/comfortable breathing without the ventilator before they put me on a trache mask 24 hours a day. Assuming I’m comfortable breathing like this, I will then be able to try breathing on my own completely with the trache opening shut. Once I reach this stage I am ‘ward able’ and will travel up a couple of floors to be monitored before I move onto the next stage which is rehab.

The more I have thought about this process, the more mini milestones I think of such as things I’d like to do and events I’d like to be able to attend. These have given me a fresh motivation to pray all the more for my breathing and to work hard at it.

I feel like I have received so much through your prayers and kind actions already that it feels cheeky to ask for more, and I wouldn’t if I didn’t believe that prayer works. We have already seen so many wonderful answers to prayer and so this weekend please join with us in praying your socks off for my sluggish lungs, knowing that as we see our prayers answered God will be glorified.

Thank you my friends (and those I don’t know – I now count you as friends) Your prayers are upholding us day by day and this is turning out to be quite an adventure!

With much love,

Luke x

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