Monthly Archives: August 2013

In Her Own Words

Hi everyone,

I thought I would write from a wife’s perspective.  As everyone can imagine this life changing event has been traumatic on our family.  With that said, I can’t imagine better children than we have.  Everyone of them are so compassionate to what their dad needs and so very protective of every situation he encounters.  They are the first to push him, to open the door or protect him from the ever oblivious one standing in the way when he’s just trying to make his way through.
The love I have experienced through our kids – is something other than amazing.  It helps me every minute of the day and helps me smile when I feel discouraged.
As you can imagine, every day is a new struggle.  Dave has lost a lot of weight but his legs, thighs and stomach are bigger than he’s ever dealt with.  They are filled with fluid from the blood clots, this prevents him from being able to do anything independently. He’s been pretty frustrated with this. I continue to be in awe of this man. Since his accident, he has continued to think about our future.  He has sold his Boat (to his kids mom and husband), my jeep, his KTM 450xcw
His road bicycle, mountain bike.  We think we have sold, our beautiful 5th Wheel Toy Hauler (that we loved),  his 2011 truck and new scooter.  This part has been hard for Dave.  We had to move our garage out of San Jose because we are selling the home – that was a fun day.  We moved it all to our storage-  when Dave rolled in there to see all of our “stuff” ie: all of our families motorcycles, all of his leathers throughout his career and all of his tools and cool tool boxes.  He looked at me and said, I’m so mad.  I asked him why?  He said, because I loved my life so much, those things made me really happy. I just let him have that, because nothing I could say or do would change how he was feeling at that moment.
Sunday was a day that we spent with close family.  It was the calm before the storm.
Dave woke up to our in-home nurse coming to speak with us.  He has been incredibly frustrated with his situation of feeling physically horrible.  We both were having an off day.  Both feeling sad and emotional – a little alone- in a weird way ( a hotel can make you feel that way).  After hitting the dermatologist for Dave – he has alopecia ( hair loss due to trauma) he had shots in the back of his scalp.  We headed back to hotel.  I decided to completely change things up and go to the movies.  I was dying to see “The Butler”. We went, interestingly, on a Monday early afternoon.  The disabled, or Dave, need to sit in the front row as you walk in.  Well, as you can imagine, on a early Monday afternoon, that row was busy because everyone at a certain age is “handicapped”. I saw a free seat with a HC vacant spot for Dave to roll into next to me.   I noticed that the elderly all put their walkers there.  When we walked in – I moved a waker maybe 3 inches to the left.  I wanted Dave to be able to back up into the spot.  Can you believe the older guy in the row behind us –  grabbed his walker and was pissed at us for moving it.  I felt horribly,  I told Dave lets move to the opposite end,  because evidently the guy  “in the back row” was grumpy that we were parked there.  He yelled at us while moving,  not grumpy,  but you should properly ask! ,,,.  As you can imagine, I was furious.  I sat and thought about people and how insensitive they are.

We began to watch “The Butler” (the most amazing movie, to me). After it was over- Dave and I were so emotional about “our” situation.  I couldn’t get Dave out of the building without breaking down.  I got us through the double doors and both of us cried about how we felt – not about the movie, but about our challenges.    The movie was so incredible – a movie about unsurmountable challenges.  People walked by us, wondering why we were both crying hysterically.  This is a man, who I’ve never seen cry.  Something hit him this morning and I wondered what got to him.  He kept telling me, I’m not sure why I’m so emotional, I can’t pull it together.   He just kept burying his head and I knew this wasn’t my husband but what this has done to him.

Joe Salas wrote the most beautiful post on FB.  It hit Dave to the core.
Joe talked about a dream he had where Dave was in it and walked!  He said,  he missed Dave.
Dave cried to Alli and myself in the hotel room that-
he misses himself too, , and wishes so badly things were different.  Joe’s post was all too real, Dave “walking”  with his amazing Smile – it IS an amazing Dream – I too, wish it would come true. Lets turn it back to June 1st because that’s the only time the both of us WANT to remember.
The Friday before the accident, Dave was Dave.  We had a bunch of people in our trailer, Jen and Jason, Barry, Lisa, Kenny, Michael, and many others.  It was “our” fun that we did before our weekend of racing.  It was our night of Coronas, Pacificos, Tequila and of course Wine.
It was a great  time, I remember Michael Ernest asking me, are you nervous when he race?  I said , ” not really – If he gets off the line he’s smooth-  I never worry about the rest of the race after the first turn”.    This time I was so wrong, I watched as my husband raced.   As he approached turn 5 in the first lap, I watched,  as I knew he was excited on his new R1 – he came out of turn 5 with all his competitors stacked up.  My eyes were on his bike – no matter how close everyone was – I saw him flip….  I saw someone else slide across the track.  After being a little confused, I asked Kenny (Dave’s mechanic, confidant and very dear friend).  Where’s Dave?  I see his bike but I don’t see Dave?  He says to me (while his wife, Lisa is holding me.). that is Dave, not the bike, he’s not moving.   I, of course thought it was his bike, because Dave always jumped up.  I knew at that moment, my life changed.
Our lives are so different at 3 months out.  Right now, I’m hoping its the worst for us.
Dave can make a lot of fun and be positive for everyone on the outside but I’m here to tell you…. He’s one hell of a man, I rather be with no other, I never met a a man who is dealing with the unbelievable and still makes me smile.  It’s a really unbelievable situation and I’ve heard from many it gets easier.  Today, was our worst day yet.  He’s not feeling well with all his swelling.
I’ve got calls into a vascular surgeon, urologist, GI Doc and anyone else that can help my husband feel better physically, this man can take a lot, when I see him hurting, that means, I need to get to work.
Hopefully he can come out this weekend and see everyone at the track.  That’s his goal, to go to Sonoma raceway and see all of his friends!  Thank you for all of your wonderful support and continued donations.  Our family so appreciates everything.

Anneliese Stanton

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My gorgeous husband who smiles and melts my heart.
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Adjusting to “our new life.” Just trying to figure it all out.

 

You Thought The EZ8 Hotel In Willow Springs Hotels Was Dirty?

Sunday started with a party at Craig’s house…..  Story to follow.

Monday our in-home nurse came to the hotel and did some blood tests.  Then, Anneliese decided we were going on errands and I was going. We went to target to get a few items we needed for the hotel.

That day we decided to explore the hotel (since I know it so well, I valet parked cars here with Steve Rapp during high school) and found that they have a great pool!  I thought Eddie should go swimming – so we went back to the pool.  Immediately Eddie says, they have a lift for Dave!   We went back to our room – Anneliese got my swim shorts on and we headed back to the pool.  Anneliese and Eddie helped me on the lift and lowered me down.  It felt great – but, I  felt like an unbalanced fishing bobber – my legs sank to the bottom.  I had to use my arms to keep my body from going sideways and keeping my head from going under.  I realized my feet were dragging on the bottom -and if I wasn’t careful – it would look like the movie, “Jaws”. After attempting the breaststroke, Anneliese was able to hold me upright and walk laps- it was so good being upright.  Being in the pool was great – but I soon began to get chilled – I could not get my body warmed up.   That night it was 80 degrees outside – we sat outside for dinner and

I was shivering.  It wasn’t until Anneliese brought me back to the hotel and got me into bed with the comforter and blanket that I finally got warm.  I found out this is very common with paraplegics – hard to regulate our body temp.  Tuesday Morning Anneliese ran errands.  She left with me with our sons, jack and Eddie.  They did a great job getting me dressed and ready for lunch.  We decided to “walk or roll” to the burrito place down the street.

It was a little uphill on the way back and I have to say my kids didn’t push me; I did most of it myself.   Alli and Anneliese showed up from their morning excursion from Mountain View.  The boys wanted to go swimming so we headed to pool.  Anneliese and I sat at a table and watched kids swim and laughed about the “super cougars” laying by the pool. Wednesday, Anneliese took me to a much overdue Dental Appt.  It was nice to see all my “Dental friends”.  Once again, I relaxed in bed back at the hotel, and my good friend, Tom Houseworth called.  We talked for a while – my friends have been so great to me.

Wednesday, we all went over to Jack and Alli’s house.   Jen, and her husband Tim, had cooked a great dinner for us and all the kids had a great time. Eddie decided to stay the night with all the kids.  We got back to the hotel that night – my back was really hurting.

Thursday was a great day because I finally received a much-needed massage from a AFM turn worker and certified Massage Therapist – Guy Berrysmith.  He came to the hotel and was able to give me and Anneliese massages.  I realized this should be a weekly occurrence as my shoulders and neck are working harder than I realize.  Unfortunately tonight, I had a rough time as I couldn’t sit at the table for dinner.  I was freezing, and after drinking tea – I couldn’t warm up.  Anneliese took me back to the room where I had a moment of tears and frustration, feeling bad for my wife and the life she has to deal with now.  She assured me that we knew what we signed up for when we raced- it’s time to face our challenges and move forward (thanks Wayne.). She put me in a hot shower and I sat for a half hour trying to warm up.  Still baffled why my thighs and middle keep swelling.  We will find out soon – I’m sure….

Friday was about spending time with friends, we had a great lunch with Mike and Laura Mahoney and Friday night we had a great dinner with our friends Dom and Doreen.  It just so happened that our good friends Monica and Mike Guasch were at the hotel having dinner so we all got together and had a great time.    After dinner we had to move our room after being here 3weeks!  Anneliese, Dom, and Doreen got me into bed in the room and immediately went to work moving all of the stuff from one room to the next.  They were finished in about 15 minutes!  There was a lot of stuff.  Thanks guys!

Saturday we got up early and waited for Kenny, Lisa and Kyle to get here.  We went to move our toy hauler from our house in San Jose to our place of storage.  I think I have it sold, so Jack, Kyle, Kenny and Lisa worked their tails off hooking it up and unloading half of it for me.

In the meantime we are selling our San Jose house and moving to Walnut Creek.  We had our friends Julian and crew packing our garage and moving everything to storage.  We were so lucky to have our neighbors Antonieta, Dennis, Sandy and Dave completely help us get things organized and into the moving trailer.  We took everything to our storage and everyone helped unpack.  I sold my KTM motorcycle, my friends Chris, Harry as well as Pete showed up and helped me start liquidating.  That’s when it really hit me, I’m going to miss the sport I spent 22 years of my life doing incredibly.  We then went to Walnut Creek to unpack a few items before heading back to the hotel.  My buddy Steve Rapp came by and hung out with Anneliese, Alli, jack and I.  Steve and I laughed about how we use to park cars here together many, many years ago.

I’m not feeling that great this evening and I’m running a bit of a fever.  Unfortunately, I have 2 more pressures sores on my heels.  I’m still so swollen in my thighs and stomach.  If it don’t feel better tomorrow we might have to head back to Kaiser.  I’m hoping that things get a little better.

Side note…

I met a guy on the side of the road (near our storage) named Steve who was riding a “arm bike”, I yelled out the window at him and we pulled over.  We stopped and chatted and found out he was injured 4 years ago.  He was great and gave me his number. I had a great conversation with him tonight sharing stories.

A funny story to end the blog…….

On Sunday, we went to my friend Craig’s house for a graduation party for his daughter, Whitney. Before we left the hotel, I was telling Anneliese, that my man diapers did not feel right – it was like they were up my butt!  She took a quick look and said, “it looks fine hunny and that it was all in my head.”   Once we got to the party, it was great to see everyone, but…  the uncomfortable feeling in my man diapers persisted.  About 6pm we left the party and came back to the hotel. When we got to the room – it had been cleaned and the TV was on.  We looked all over the room and couldn’t find the remote control; we called the front desk and got another one. The man that delivered the remote was surprised that it was gone but left us a new one (Anneliese was quick to blame the maid and said, she must have wrapped it up in the sheets.)   About a minute later – Anneliese was helping me get ready for bed – taking off my shorts….   low and behold the remote control was jammed in my man diapers!!!!!!  Somehow when we got ready…  it came with me… uncontrolled laughter ensued.

Message…….

When they tell you the dirtiest thing in a hotel room is the remote control – they are not kidding!

 

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Eddie helping me into the pool
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Jack and Eddie doing their balancing act in the pool
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Ahhhh, water feels so good.
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Getting ready for my first dip in the pool
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Swimming at the hotel
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Dave working at pool while kids went swimming.
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Dave trying to get warm! I couldn’t resist this pic!
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Alli and her friend, Rachel, stopping by the hotel after cheer practice!

 

 

Tacos and Jack is Back!

Hi Everyone,

Monday morning started off at the hotel, as our bathroom is still being fine-tuned. The home health care nurse came and took my blood for the Coumadin Clinic to see how the blood thinners are working.  After the home health care nurse looked at my “child bearing” hips we determined that we should make an appointment with my primary physician in Walnut Creek, as the swelling still hadn’t gone down, and I had developed a bed sore.  Later that evening we had a wonderful dinner with our friend’s Mike and Laura.  It’s always great to be with good friends.

After visiting with the new doc on Tuesday he determined that we yet again needed another CT scan, where we found a lot of fluid in my hips and my stomach due to the blood clots.  He told me to watch them and make sure they don’t get bigger, red, or hot and that if they did, I would need to go back to the ER.  Later that night, we met Hank Rainey and Dave aka “Cheeseburger” for appetizers in Lafayette.  They surprised me back at the hotel with a little “gift” of a Jazzy motorized chair.  I haven’t tried it out yet, but my son Eddie has given it the thumbs up on the 6mph top speed.

Wednesday came and my wife wanted to get out of the hotel and take me to downtown Walnut Creek for lunch. After parking in our “new” handicap space we “strolled” to lunch and around Walnut Creek to get some exercise.

Thursday morning the home health care nurse showed up and told us that bed sore was a little worse (stage 2) and that I should keep my legs up and pressure off of the sore throughout the day.  To be honest, I hadn’t been feeling great since Wednesday and Thursday was a bit worse.  It was getting hard to get out of bed.

Friday came with more of the same, as I wasn’t feeling great.  I was swollen, uncomfortable, and I couldn’t touch my toes from my wheel chair because of the tightness in my stomach. Since I cant feel my stomach, I wasn’t sure if I had an upset stomach or if something was wrong inside my stomach.  Anneliese called the nurse and she recommended that we go to the ER.  I didn’t want to go but I knew that I should listen to the nurse.  So there we went and sat for 7 hours and all they could tell me after the X ray and discussing with surgeons was that I might have an excess amount of gas in my intestines.  They discharged me at midnight and Alli came to get Anneliese and myself.  We will watch for the next few days and if it doesn’t get better we will consult with a specialist.  After not eating for two days I was starving and I hate to admit that I had my daughter drive me through Jack in the box for some tacos.  We went back to the hotel and I devoured my tacos and part of Anneliese’s diet coke.

Today I woke up and felt pretty good.  Anneliese got me up and out of the hotel. We went to downtown Walnut Creek and had lunch, then went to the house to see the progress on bathroom and it looks great, thanks Dom! Can’t wait to see the awesome results.  Later that night we had dinner in Lafayette and Jack came back from his vacation and joined us!

Thank you all for the continued support, it means a lot.  Look for a fun report in the next couple days!

-Dave

One year anniversary of little Eddie's grandpas passing.
One year anniversary of little Eddie’s grandpas passing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tonight after trying to have a real "normal." Took the kids out for dinner. Jack just arriving from vacation with his mom.
Tonight after trying to have a real “normal.” Took the kids out for dinner. Jack just arriving from vacation with his mom.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pasta, me, and Cheesy
Pasta, me, and Cheesy

 

Back at the Hotel

HI EVERYONE,

Back at the hotel…..

We were finally admitted on late Thursday afternoon and had a wonderful Emergency Room staff assist us.  Later that night, after having to place pillows over my head and repeatedly call the desk and ask to please keep the noise down – I finally fell asleep.  I was AGAIN woken up at 2:30 AM told that I needed to move rooms because a female had been admitted and she “could not” sleep in the same room as a male?  I was moved to a room with a new “roommate” which wasn’t so bad, but my bed was too small for my 6′ 2” frame.  So, by about 3:30 AM, it was time for a new bed again.  The next morning, the much nicer day shift nurses asked if I wanted a bigger bed – I immediately said YES without hesitation.  At about 10 AM, they rolled in with my new “ride” which was a sweet looking ol’ battleship kind of bed.  Right after I moved into my new bed – Anny, Alli and Eddie showed up to get ready to take me home. After doing paperwork and waiting for the pharmacy to come up and do their courtesy call – which I have to say, is an awesome benefit, we were finally ready to get on our way.  My daughter brought her little 2002 330i BMW to take me home in (we thought we would attempt a new transfer.) She brought it to the curb and we did our transfer – although not graceful, we did decide – so much easier in a car :-)  We then went to the hotel for a much needed rest.

We got up the next day and had many visitors coming to my brother’s house.  We Struggled with our new “normal” and took us a couple of hours to get out of the hotel instead of a half hour as normal.

Once we got there it was great.  We had visits from Anneliese’s best friends Kate, Sharyl and their families.  She could only wish Joanna could have been here from Miami and she would have been in heaven.  Sharyl’s daughter, Melanie had a cute little 3-week-old boy, named Carson Petty.  I got to hold him and remember what it was like to have a newborn, which made me feel really old… haha.  Kate and her family showed up right when I decided not to feel well and spent an hour in the bedroom feeling sick.  I finally pulled it together and came out to see everyone – only to see my “Good Friend” Berto and Monica there to visit as well.  We all then spent an hour on our front lawn talking and enjoying everyone there.

On Sunday, after a nice brunch with my Mom and family – I had a nice visit from Kenny, Lisa, and Kyle before their trip to Nashville.  Other than that, most of my day/evening was spent in bed with my legs up to eliminate the swelling.  On Monday, I had many visits by my home health care nurses and Physical therapist getting my new routine going.  I’m working hard on getting my new “normal” but it constantly takes turns.  We will get it together soon.

Thank you for your continued support and all of the comments.  I enjoy reading all of them.

Thanks,

Dave

Huge diaper legs
Huge diaper legs
Selfie
Selfie
Look at my tree stumps!
Look at my tree stumps!
Getting ready to leave the hospital, AGAIN
Getting ready to leave the hospital, AGAIN
Enjoying family time with new baby, Carson
Enjoying family time with new baby, Carson
My dear friend Sharyl who introduced me to my wife
My dear friend Sharyl, who introduced me to my wife
Anneliese's "other" daughters baby, Carson
Anneliese’s “other” daughters baby, Carson
Baby whisperer
Baby whisperer

Small Setback

Hi Everyone,

I had a little setback today- as I got readmitted to the hospital for blood clots.  Two days ago my legs started to swell, and this morning when I woke up they were much bigger than last night.  Anneliese and I called the advice nurse (as we had an appointment with our doc at 10:30 AM) she immediately told us to go to the ER at Kaiser Walnut Creek.  After much needed blood tests and a few ultrasounds, we were told I had blood clots in my legs, which were moving up to my abdomen.  These results prompted the Doctor to call for a CT scan on my lungs.  They found some of the clots had made it past my IVC Filter and formed small pulmonary embolisms in my right lung.  After hearing this news, I knew I would be re-admitted to the hospital based on the seriousness of the blood clots, especially in my lungs.  After we talk to the docs tomorrow and find out what my options are… we will update the blog.  Thank you all again -for the incredible amount of support.  I really do appreciate it.

Dave

Here I am back at the hospital
A brief glimpse to show you how swollen my legs are

8/5/13 part1

Hello Everyone,

This is my first post from home.

My last week in the hospital was good. I had many friends come to visit. I was a bit anxious, as I’ve been here for a month and have made a lot of wonderful friends who I will not forget. They have helped me overcome obstacles that seemed unthinkable a month ago. At the end of the week I’d realized that I’ve missed the entire summer. I had been inside the entire time, and my moment’s outside happened to include clouds and fog.

Part of the “graduation” from Kaisers rehab was that you receive a green shirt with Kaisers motto “Thrive,” and a black sharpie. The intent is to wear the shirt to PT and have all of your PT & OT “Wrecking Crew” sign it. Fridays PT included walking using the parallel bars for assistance (video below), which kicked my ass. Saturday morning I knew I didn’t have to go to class, so I slept in. I was not able to clean the room, and it was a disaster. Anneliese and Alli immediately helped me get dressed and started packing up. After packing, Anneliese and Alli loaded up all hospital-related stuff into hospital bags. Like thieves in the night, they took all their loot to the car, before we were officially discharged. Once we picked up our meds and were cleared to go, we made our way to the car. Having mastered transfers earlier in the week it was no problem for me to get in the car, the only problem we had at this point was our car looked like an episode of “Hoarders.” The last problem before we could set-sail was to get the wheel chair in the car. We got through it and made it back to Walnut Creek.

We got to my brother’s house in Walnut Creek and got ready for dinner at Il Fornaio. After jockeying for parking (a gentleman in his Tommy Bahama’s  righteously plucking a “blue spot”), dinner was amazing. It was great to have real-people food (and a glass of Pinot Noir) again. From there we went to the Lafayette Park hotel because my bathroom is still under construction at my brother house.

Sunday was spent at my brother’s house. A few friends dropped by, as well as my contractor (Domenic Covarelli and his wife Doreen). We had a great day , filled with laughter. Jon’s ribs and Molly’s salad-pallooza were amazing. “Reliable Craig” was back fixing the side gate, so I can get to the back yard. It’s getting late, and time for me to head back to the hotel to get some rest.

I will update as soon as I can.

Drive fast and take chances!

-Dave

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P.S. We’ve got gear! Go to the link below to order “Stanton 53″ apparel. Majority of the proceeds will be used for Dave’s future and immediate needs.

Password is: supportds53!