Thursday, September 04, 2008
Gustav Aftermath - Thursday night update
To make our life even more interesting, we had to bring Braden in to the hospital yesterday morning... and had we not been trying to stay out of harm's way, we would have brought him in Sunday evening. We had to "bag" Braden (a form of rescue breathing associated with CPR) four times a day while evacuated, and it escalated yesterday morning, so we called to ensure the hospital had air conditioning, to handle Braden's issues with overheating.
So we are on life support again, but he is resting comfortably for the first time in a week. I think all of us are. Nobody should ever have to do CPR on their own child, and when you do it as many times as we have recently, it's very exhausting in all the ways you can imagine. For many reasons I don't have time or the energy to expand upon now, but promise to do so at a later date, we have scheduled Braden for a tracheostomy next week. This will allow him to use his energy for other things, instead of spending every ounce of what he has just trying to breathe! This is not a decision we are entering into lightly, we have been discussing this potential outcome for some time. And we still have many questions for our family meeting with the medical team later this week, but we are taking the advice of our medical team, and they are encouraging a trach. Please pray for his surgery to go well for that, we really do appreciate them and ask you keep praying for him.
Life after Gustav... like I said, progress is at a snail's pace. Some gas stations have finally opened for people to get gas for their cars and generators, only after the governor said that a week or longer without power is "not acceptable", and bought generators with state money, so some gas stations could re-open. The scarcity of gas here has people really on edge, waits are usually over an hour in a gas line, and the people here are losing patience for power, supplies, and some relief. The national guard has arrived and began handing out MRE's, blue tarps, bags of ice and waters to those who come through line. 95% of all traffic lights are still out, making traffic a NIGHTMARE for those of us who HAVE to report to work. A lot of people are out trying to get supplies, and sit in the comfort of the AC in their cars. About 20% of the people in Baton Rouge have power - but that's probably a little overstated. For some it will be early October before they get power back, and we could be one of them. A few banks and grocery stores and pharmacies have reopened for cash-only business, easing more of the uneasiness that comes with cold showers, no power, no air, and no idea when it will be over. I think as the city works to come back "online", people will start to relax a little more and settle into their situation... but that patience will only go so far if they have to wait weeks on end for the power to return to their own homes.
These are some pictures from around Baton Rouge, near where we live and near campus and on-campus. It's like a million tornadoes went through here, and already most of the tree debris has been piled up and organized, so if you want "day of" storm photos, my student paper website has some good ones at: www.lsureveille.com
Daddy is keeping up things at the home front while mommy makes the sacrifice to get hot showers and AC at the hospital with Braden. The staff at Our Lady of the Lake has always been amazing, and once again in a disaster, they are providing us with a calm and peace amidst the madness outside the hospital walls. We are both "essential staff" at LSU, and have had to work, but we are trying to rest when we can. Please don't worry too much about us yet... if we are without power for a few more weeks, we may be asking favors of those who can help, but for now, we are fine. We have faced much diversity in the past two years, so we are already equipped to rise to the occasion and handle chaos all around us. We do appreciate your continued prayers, after all, we are only human:-)
Will post more this weekend.