Tuesday, February 27, 2007

A couple Uma photos I just scanned, and an update, some things to visualize

Eleanor took these photos of me and Urp in September (or maybe it was August) of 2002, in the lobby of the hotel next to the 101 Coffeeshop on Franklin in Hollywood. I just scanned them into my computer and wanted to post them here because I really like these photos.

Especially this one:

I'm going to copy and paste John's update from today, but first I just want to express my love and gratitude to all of the many (MANY!) people who have donated money to Uma's air ambulance fund. We've raised $13,807.09 in two days. Which is stunning and amazing and so fucking awesome. Thank you so much. I can't say those words enough. The support out there, the love, it's amazing. I know I just used that word--amazing--but that's what it is, so I can say it as many times as I want. Please keep spreading the word, and feel free to check out www.theumafund.blogspot.com for fundraising updates--the Air Ambulance is essential and expensive, and of course there are other medical expenses that will need to be covered. But the fact that Uma received almost 14 thousand dollars in two freaking days is just--I'm gonna say it again--wonderful and amazing and THANK YOU.

John's update 2/28/07: (sorry about the random words that have run together, i don't know why my cut and paste function does that to john's emails)

hello everyone,

i'm going to give the medical stuff first.....uma will probably have the shunt installed tomorrow or, if not then, on thursday. here's why.....the ctscan today revealed that her ventricles have expanded quite a bit. i saw the ctscan from the 19th compared with the one from today and her ventricles looked to me to be about 50 to 60 per cent larger. while dr. hirschfeld, marie, and i were looking at the scans i put nithi on my cell phone on with the doctor. nithi said he wanted to have his sister, dharshi, (the doctor at stanford) call dr. hirschfeld and consult. she did, and nithi called to give consent for the operation. hirschfeld said the risk of infection is about 10 pct. over and the risk of blockage is about 20 to 30 pct. over her lifetime. that's not that bad, actually. we'll deal with it. i asked how many days this operation will 'put her back' in terms of being able to leave -assuming that recovery from this will remove her from being able to continue the weaning of the respirator for a day or two - he said that it would only be about2 days.

marie and i went to say good night to uma but she wasalready fast asleep. we went to get our coats and backpacks and noticed that hirschfeld had left. we just caught him in the elevator on the way down and i tookthat opportunity to ask him, "is it possible that today's ctscan reveals the normal size of her ventricles and the one from the 19th shows them smaller due to some other swelling?" he said it was avery good question but that today's scan shows them asbeing quite rounded and large to assume that this isnormal for her. it was just the size, it was the shape of them, too.

for some reason i feel at peace about this. if sheneeds this to make it home, then she needs it to makeit home. (i'm pretty sure that's an irish saying....) god is good and i have had no reason to distrust anyof this process since the 31st, really. all has gone much better than anyone expected. by the way, thedoctor also showed us the area of infarction or'stroke' and that it seems like she really didn't haveone after all.

uma has fought an amazing battle here and she is not done. we're going to get some miraculous medical helpin the next day or two, and some miraculous 'other' help all during rehab and afterwards.

there are some things that are really troubling me andher and i want help with it. she is down mentally and spiritually. she shows signs of life throughout theday but her overall mood is very sad and dark. again, i don't blame her at all and i certainly don't preach to her about it. i don't talk to her like she's five years old.....i'm not a nurse. (where DO they learn that?) and she continues to have pneumonia.

we need, really NEED her out of that ICU very, very soon. not just for her physical health but also toshow her that SOMETHING is changing. pray hard for this please. we need a change for herlungs, for her heart and her mind. these 'minor' complication add up to staying in ny longer. i really feel she needs to go home. please pray for this.....no pnuemonia and some light, some blazing, undeniable light of hope for her spirit.

on another note - marie and i spoke with about 20 different air ambulance companie today. they all costabout $20k plus. they are basically flying intensive care units. this is a lot of money, yes, but something amazing has happened in the last 36 hours or so. erik patterson has set up a website. you can reach it here.....


probably, by now, there have been donations from well over 100 people.....all friends of uma's, mine, erik's etc. etc. and the total is over $10,000.00. i have alot of words at my disposal but no combination of them will serve to convey the feeling in my heart.....it's like the living definition of gratitude, of humility, of thanks. ....i wonder what the next 36 hours will do.

every prayer in every conceivable modality, to me, is precious. with great confidence i thank you, inadvance, for making uma's day tomorrow a little bit brigher.

all my heart and love,



soleclaw said...

Everything you're doing for Uma is amazing, Erik. I'm so glad she's making progress. My thoughts are with her, and with all the doctors and close friends and family as well.

Nate said...

Last weekend I went to Death Valley NP and visited a ghost town (Ballarat) just so we could vanadalize in Uma's name: http://picasaweb.google.com/natevillaume/DeathValleyFeb2007/photo#5036650613362397234

Her name is assembled from things we found there.