Defending the 12th century since the 14th; blogging since the 21st.

Catholicism, Conservatism, the Middle Ages, Opera, and Historical and Literary Objets d'Art blogged by a suburban dad who teaches law and writes stuff.

"Very fun." -- J. Bottum, Editor, FIRST THINGS

"Too modest" -- Elinor Dashwood

"Perhaps the wisest man on the Web" -- Henry Dieterich

"Hat tip: me (but really Cacciaguida)" -- Diana Feygin, Editor, THE YALE FREE PRESS

"You are my sire. You give me confidence to speak. You raise my heart so high that I am no more I." -- Dante

"Fabulous!"-- Warlock D.J. Prod of Didsbury

Who was Cacciaguida? See Dante's PARADISO, Cantos XV, XVI, & XVII.

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Saturday, December 15, 2007
Cacciagranddaddy update

I never thought I'd achieve Escape From New York (delays due to Dad's condition, then more due to weather), but I'm home now. Elinor updated you in her last comment to the post immediately below. Dad's surgery went brilliantly, but his recovery went awry starting about 36 hours after I put up that post, and from that point on, between my dad's condition, my mom and and two sisters (who have quite literally camped out in the waiting room of the Neuro-Surgery Intensive Care Unit since last Sunday), and other things I had to do in NY, I have not had time to get to a computer.

Elinor summed it up, so I'll just add: Dad is still in the ICU, with both a feeding tube and a respirator. However, the agenda is therapeutic, not terminal. The "game-plan" (as his internist puts it) is to get him nourished and rested back up to the point where he can again take food and air the normal way. When that happens, he can return -- not home (yet), but to in-patient physicial therapy, where he was before it became obvious that surgical removal of the hematoma was absolutely necessary.

All his CT-scans since the surgery have been excellent, including one done yesterday. His neurosurgeon says that overall he's making progress in slow steps. He's being kept stable at a level of sedation deep enough for him tolerate the tubes, but light enough for his heart to tolerate (past history of heart attack and atrial fibrillation).

His cardiologist is the most driven Jewish doctor I've ever met, and seems to have taken an extra year of residency just to learn a particularly dramatic way of taking off his glasses while giving an explanation. He continues to focus on each emergent problem of Dad's like Holmes on Moriarty or Patton on Rommel. He uses the word "realistic," which drives my sisters into hysterics, and doesn't do me a lot of good either. But the thing is, he really is Pattonesque. He is invested in this case, obviously not because he loves Dad the way we do, but because every syndrome that doesn't yield to his ministrations is a personal and professional affront to him. And (as Patton said in the midst of Hitler's Ardennes offensive) "because I realize, gentlemen, that we could still lose this war." You really want him on your team, even if you don't look forward to his briefings. (He's the one who cured Dad of atrial fibrillation a year and a half ago.)