Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Days 26-28

For our Auctions, we have:

Crime and Terror, Graphic Novel Signed by Steve Niles & Scott Morse


4 Pieces of Handmade Jewelry Created by Artist, Singer Monica Richards

And here is Eron's updates for the past couple of days:
Day 26 & 27

"Goodbye hospital, next stop Glendale!:
Sorry for the lateness of these posts, as Lola has mentioned, it has been a stupendously busy couple of days! After much grumbling, they made her very happy by pulling her feeding tube at last — making the transition to solid food was a bit rocky, but her love of the egg sandwiches that her mom has been smuggling her for breakfast has made things easier. I was skeptical about her use of jelly on said bagel sandwich, but hey, Callie loves it and I even had one and it's pretty good. At Callie's request, last night I brought some of my secret risotto (I'm sure I make legions of italian grandmothers cry every time I touch arborio rice) mounded with fresh spanish goat cheese and loads of roasted purple heirloom carrots and fennel. I even got her Chego tonight, but forgot the bowl I ordered had one ultra spicy tingrediant in it which she bit in to and nearly cried. Thankfully we were able to avoid that for the rest of the meal though being a klutz, I did accidentally dump a flood of ice water on her (sorry Callie!)
After the accidental cold shower, were were able to quickly get her shirt changed — which shows even more that every day there is a little bit more progress. Though to be fair yesterday was a bit rough since they had her on so many kinds of painkillers and other drugs to remove the feeding tube and catheter. She mostly just slept, but who else besides a few crazed shoppers do anything but relax on the day after Thanksgiving anyway. The doctor, probably also recovering from turkey-induced stupor, was in jeans and a sweater, and Lola asked for his ID — only half-jokingly I'm sure ;) As they were working, Callie was so high she occasionally sang to the doctor. Because singing during surgery is how Callies roll! Michelle and Will dropped by yesterday too while she was still a bit loopy from the drugs, and they had an amusingly non-sequitur conversation that I couldn't even begin to follow with my sleep deprived brain. I brought her Black Friday cheese from the Silverlake Cheese shop as a treat for being so hard working - and she scarfed down a huge chunk of sharp cheddar the moment I cut it open.
Though she loves watching the Venture Bros. (which she calls, "The Brock Sampson Show,") I am officially, "No fun anymore," because I continue to make her do exercises and reading before she can watch any TV. Lola turned to Callie this morning and went, "You wouldn't want Eron as a Dad would you Callie, he's so mean!" And Callie gleefully agreed. But the biggest news is that all this hard work has payed off! —They have officially recommended her to go directly to an advanced acute physical and occupation rehab center in Glendale! As of Sunday or Monday she'll have graduated up another major step! She has been very worried about the move, but she's worked so hard that the doctors are constantly being shocked by the pace of her progress. Lola and Tucker have been doing the most amazing job taking care of her (and I've been grabbing the late-late shift) and along with solid food, now she can do a good amount of the work to get dressed and go to the bathroom, and can even touch her thumb to each finger on her right hand. I know she's worried about the move to the rehab facility, but with all of you cheering her on I know she'll do amazing there. One day really soon she'll be the one to write these updates!"

Day 28
"Yes, I think this is a hybrid day [again] but at least for us I'm a bit shaky on the timeframe. I'll start with the less good news, which is that after an exhausting but pretty smooth move to the Glendale Adventist acute rehab facility, at some point early in the AM, Callie decided she was going to get right on trying to get better and and attempt to go to the bathroom by herself, which resulted in her falling out of bed and me taking an early AM quick drive to calm her down. They did CTs to make sure everything was okay, and when I got there I asked, "Does anything hurt?" and she sheepishly told me, "Only my pride." It wasn't a great way to start the move and her dark mood, compounded by sleep deprivation, continued for much of the morning. Tonight Lola is staying with her doing a pajama party :)
Day 28 Pt. 2:
All of the negatives aside, that morning I had handed her a cup of yogurt for breakfast, and rather than waiting for me to help, she grabbed a spoon with her right hand and with only a small amount of hesitation managed to eat the whole thing by herself. Note: she couldn't even move that right hand a week ago! Similarly today they set her lunch of meatloaf, veggies and salad down in front of her and she just dug in (mostly using her left) and ate the whole thing. The only item she needed help with was one impudent [and very under-ripe] cherry tomato. After that we took advantage of her newfound freedom from regular hospital life and had her hop in a wheelchair and hang out outside on the balcony for a while.
The new rehab facility is exactly what she needs. They do tons of work every day — with a bare minimum of one session of Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Speech Therapy every day (and sometimes more!) Most of the male staff is doing handlebar mustaches for Movember, so the hospital looks a bit like a Silverlake bar. Today and tomorrow are evaluations for the team to fine tune the intensive program they want to pursue with her. For PT, they have confirmed there's plenty of work to be done so that she can move around for the next month without using her right leg (which needs four more weeks to heal up). Speech therapy was a breeze, since today was the testing for chewing, eating and swallowing (which can be tough after these sort of injuries). The whole session was prefaced by Callie telling the Speech Therapist that her mom and brother were bringing her Umami Burger. The test ended two minutes later when Callie downed a bite of each of her lunch and drank some water by herself. Test passed!
Aside from that, Callie thinks her Occupational Therapist completely awesome (who incidentally sports the most epic of the Movember stashes). They are actually having us diagram the tricky parts of our apartment so that they can recreate the setting, such as the height of the steps, in the rehab center. Toady was a bit rough, but she is completely free of all invasive lines and her medication count is going down all the time! Tucker and Lola are staying at our apartment in downtown now. We still have a long way to go and probably more than a few more rough days where she doesn't feel like she's making any progress, but keep on sending her your love and sooner than we will realize, she'll be better!"

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

I just realized

that I haven't updated this blog since Friday.

First off:
Black Dahlia 1 & 2 Paintings by Stephanie Han, auction is still going on! 25 for two beautiful paintings? Greatest deal!

We still have Callie Auction 3 going
[LINK 4 Pieces of Handmade Jewelry by Kirsten Thompson]
. It's some very pretty bulk jewelry!

We also have STEVE NILES (creator of 30 DAYS OF NIGHT and my personal favorite, GOTHAM AFTER MIDNIGHT) who was so generous to give us awesome books to auction off!

Monstrous Collection Graphic Novel By Steve Niles, Artwork By Bernie Wrightson
is up!

Also, if you're looking to keep up with all the auctions, my store page is here.

Here is how Callie has been doing this week!

From Eron, Days 21-23:
"Day 21

... Today was a big day again for Callie — She has now officially graduated from ICU to a normal hospital room! Lola has been amazing in making sure she gets the best care possible and now we're working our way to rehab. There are many steps until then, but as Callie put it best to Ange, "When can I have lunch?" Speaking of speaking, as of yesterday they had her trac capped, but in the three hours between when I left in AM and Lola showed up in the morning Callie managed to perform minor surgery on herself and sneakily remove her entire trac apparatus. The doctors were shocked, but she seemed to be doing well enough that they just went ahead and left it out.
When she gets cold she now has a fleece Hello Kitty hat that she can wear, though woe be on those who try to put it on when she doesn't want it on. You will be met with the darkest scowl you have ever seen, though a cute scowl it still is. While Mau (her cat) would just get in trouble being a room with so many cords and things to gnaw on, Callie's great friend Katie crocheted a faux-Mau-kitten, complete with heart-shaped-spot for Callie to ejnoy while she's in the hospital. We've posted up all of the photos in her room again and there are enough that they are starting to cover the walls!
Callie is also getting to the point where she is ever more aware and starting to get agitated at not being able to do small things. She constantly pleads to go home. Today, one of the nurses was about to give her some medicine and as she was prepping it Callie turned me and went, "I think we should leave soon." This aggitationat small things she can't do is a normal part of the progression of healing but it's still tough to watch. However, being that she isn't in ICU, now is the time to shower her with cards, stuffed animals, flowers and anything else you've been saving up! Just let me or Lola know and we'll make sure they make their way to the room. Thanks as always for the amazing support, prayers and positive thoughts you're sending her way!"

Day 22:
"It's amazing how fast she is progressing — Today she managed to eat real food for the first time - to be fair, it was all pureed mush, but still! She most assuredly liked the mashed potatoes and gravy better than whatever the weird green mush was, and way better than the strange gray-brown mush. When I told her that Shing was going to bring her Chego once she was better she very loudly went, "CHEEEGGOOOO!" Additionally while her mom was taking care of her she managed to sit in a regular chair for almost three hours. It wasn't easy, but she toughed it out. Lola, who had been doing a great job taking care of her while I try to sneak work in, even got her standing briefly.
One of the most shocking parts of the night was when Jenny was about to leave. We were talking with Callie and somehow she mentioned she knew it was Monday. Which was a major jolt because both Jenny and I had to think for a moment to realize she was right and we didn't know it. Aside from giving orders like she is at work, (she told Jenny, Han and her mom to go to the stockroom), she has also rediscovered swearing — not that I blame her — they had to change a very heavily taped line, and anyone who has taken off a band aid can only imagine what it must feel like to have three layers of biggest band aid you can imagine ripped off! [I always joked that one of the reasons she was attractive to me was that she was the only woman I know who swore in text message so it's good to see her sense of humor is still there.]
She at one point picked out a song on her own iPod and said something to the effect of, "I'm just picking something random." Earlier when she was more awake she had picked out one of her favorite playlists with her mom! The other major news for the day is that they think she'll be moving out of the hospital to rehab within a week. She's already starting to move her right leg way more then ever before, propping it up while she sleeps. It's hard to believe she couldn't even really do more than nod her head yes a week ago! The nurses and doctors in the new wing are really spot on — very pro. Keep sending you love and prayers for a fast and full recovery!"

Day 23
Callie's Mom: "Miracle day! Callie got scared this morning and ask Melinda the nicest nurse EVER to call me. The nurse told me the situation that she was awoken abruptly by the nurse doing vitals. Callie gets on the phone and says, " Mom, I'm scared, where are you?" I said I'm just down the street in a hotel I'm going to throw on clothes and I will be right there. When I got there15 min later, her and Melinda.were chatting. Yep, chatting. She is talking about everything and yes, she isn't sure of some things, but she is talking and making a whole lot of sense. We called Eron, Celeste, Loretta, Katie, Iris. We have a miracle!"
"I'm going to deviate from my usual updates for this one. It's big. For those of you who missed my exclamation point filled update this morning, Callie, with her mom's help, called me at 7:20AM to make sure I was up for work and to tell me she loves me!!!!!!!!!!!! To backtrack a bit, last night Han and Jenny visited and as Jenny was leaving, she remarked about what a breakthrough Callie was undergoing, knowing that it was Monday and all. After that she because extremely agitated, crying about her haircut, begging me to take her home, and pleading to let her stand up with repeating "This is so stupid, this is so stupid." It would have been very difficult to be in the room for anyone, but was heartbreaking for me.
She got worse and worse, and without me noticing, more and more aware. After a couple hours of trying to help her out, calm her down, hugging her and trying not to despair a slow change came over her. Very slow. So slow that it fell under my conscious radar. [To be honest I didn't post or text about it because I didn't know what was actually happening until I got the phone call this morning.] Eventually she settled down a bit asking a million questions, trying to figure out where she was and what the hell had happened to her. That should have been my first clue — she couldn't even talk a week ago and she spent two hours pelting me with tough questions. Eventually her nurse came in. Callie turned to her and went, "I'm sorry, what's your name?" Upon receiving, "Melinda." She said, "Hi Melinda, how long will my catheter be in?" I was baffled.
As the nurse, who was truly amazing, went about her business, she and Callie increasingly joked about making me watch Sex in the City 2, and how they would make sequels, all as bad as that movie. For the rest of the night, she chatted with me, asking to see photos from the wall. She wasn't totally coherent, rambling & repeating nonsense occasionally and she did express a love for morphine numerous times, but she was talking and talking and trying to figure out where downtown was from the hospital and asking questions about the accident and her injuries, and complaining about the hospital food. I gave her fairly honest answers and aside from a few tears, the only weird thing was that she seemed to be missing certain basic words, like "bed." Instead she was using archaic terms like, "pallet" and "cot." There were still plenty of moment os weird non-sequiturs, but I worked really hard with her to help her put her syntax back together, often struggling over the sentence ten or fifteen times with her.
She eventually got really tired and I turned the lights off in her small room. She laid down in the dark and told me she loved me and missed her mom and how she wished her right hand worked correctly. She then whispered, "Tell everyone I think I'm finally awake." After which she spent about 15 minutes saying things I couldn't make hide nor hair of. I left feeling like I lucky yo have seen a little bit of a passing glimmer and didn't make too much more of it. To get back to the phone call: Holy hell I was wrong that it was a fleeting moment. Today, she had the nurse dial and she called her mom to come to hospital around 6AM. That's damn right, she talked to her mom on the telephone to come over from the hotel. Last night wasn't just a flittering moment of lucidity. Though very tough times and massive re-learning is to come, along with more tears and more joy, Callie is awake and starting to become Callie again."

Go, Callie, go!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Callie Auction 3!

This is the 3rd Callie auction! I'll have the link by this afternoon (PST)!
A balk collection of beautiful handmade jewelry! You could keep these for yourself or they'd made great holiday presents! The money goes to a great cause too. :)

You are bidding on four pieces of handmade jewelry by Kirsten Thompson. All proceeds will go towards Callie Rogers. On Halloween weekend, Callie was driving and her car was hit by a drunk driver. She is currently in a coma at UCLA's Intensive Care Unit. Please visit Jessi Awesome's blog to learn more about our fundraiser to help raise money for Callie's medical bills.

"I'm donating to Callie because I know how hard it is to deal with having a loved one be ill or injured, and want to help her and her family. <3s geekgirls."

First piece: 16" necklace made of glass beads of varying sizes painted in gold and blue hung with silver plated lobster claw clasp.

Second piece: 17.5" necklace made of purple glass beads of varying shapes and sizes, finished with a goddess pendant and a lobster claw clasp.

Third piece: 21" necklace with white bone dragon pendant with green and black beads. lobster claw clasp.

Pair of earrings: Large blue beads with a raised pattern, offset by black and silver beads and hung from stainless steel earring hooks.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Callie Update Plus Auctions

Okay guys!

Marie Lu's LEGEND is still up for grabs here: Signed Advanced Copy of Legend by Marie Lu, Hardcover

And we have a new auction up: Black Dahlia 1 & 2 Paintings by Stephanie Han

We will VERY SOON, have another auction up! It's jewelry!

Also, Steve Niles was so gracious to donate SIGNED BOOKS!

So you can bid on some goods and help a wonderful person out as well!

This is what Eron has to say about Day 17:
"So today I thought I wouldn't have much to write about except for the difficulties of making the transition to Kaiser. In fact, the transition seemed to take so much out of her that Lola and I were a bit down since she seemed to be rather worse than the day before. However, and I don't want to downplay the massive difficulties still facing Callie, tonight I was hanging out, reading a book and occasionally talking to her about the day while she slept as I waited for them to kick me out to do a CT scan. After a bit she opened her good eye up, and as I talked more telling her about her mom, Mau and her friends she got more responsive. Finally, even with the transport team in the room, she was mouthing short questions and comments, including "I love you," which cumulated with her having the wherewithal to ask, "What happened?"
Not only that, but because I am terrible at lip reading and the team was helping me out trying to figure out what she was saying, we had to ask her to repeat her questions and she could! I told her she was in a bad car accident because a drunk driver hit her and that she was in unconscious for about two weeks. And because we are both giant Futurama nerds and I was so elated, I blurted out, "You know, like in that Futurama episode with the space bees and Leela was in a coma." Other than my dumb comments, the transition was really hard on her. She spent most of today very sore and sleeping. Lola and I spent most of the day trying to get caught up on everything and come up to speed with the new group of doctors working with Callie. Even with that amazing moment tonight, which I'm so thankful for, it's just a tiny step in a very long processes, so keep cheering her on!"

Go Callie, go!

Monday, November 14, 2011

We're going to have another auction up in about a day or so. This time it's for two beautiful paintings of dahlias by artist Stephanie Han.

Eron has this to say about Callie on Day 15:

"Today was a day of waiting — [Callie's mom] spent most of the day with Callie, or at least the portions that she wasn't in an MRI or asleep. I spent most of the afternoon in traffic. They did get a chance to give her a ninja hair cut finally, so now she has a cute blonde buzz cut. The biggest news of the day, and the biggest cause of the waiting, is that she is officially stable enough that they are ready to transfer Callie out of the UCLA Neuro-ICU. That was supposed to happen today but Kaiser wasn't ready. We still don't know which hospital she is going to, but we're pretty sure they will make the move tomorrow.
We got her a portable iPod-dock music player so wherever we go she can have some fun music to speed along her time without the Pandora ads and it's insistence that everyone should listen to Radiohead. Right now she is fast asleep, but a bit earlier she was quite responsive even to the nurses, nodding, "Yes," or grimacing (a version of, "no" we're thinking) to answer basic questions. Specifically I can tell you: her head hurts, she would like some more pain medicine, and I am scruffy. She's also doing okay on the longer term tests of letting her breath on her own and they keep increasing the duration she is off the machine.
Because of the breathing tube she can't talk even if she was able to, but for the first time I think she mouthed a few words; "It hurts," [of course], but then she smirked and squeezed my hand so I think her sense of humor is relatively intact, then she fell asleep. Her right side is still given her problems, but the doctors told us that would take a lot longer to come back to full. Thanks to everyone for the fun reading recommendations for her — I've got to make a bookstore run when I get the chance to grab a few options. I'm not totally sure how I'll tell if she likes the book I pick, but maybe she'll use her mitten to box me in the head again? Whoever anonymously got me the album from Amazon to listen to while at the hospital, you rock, thanks! Thanks to everyone for all the thoughts and wishes for Callie! I can't wait until she's well enough for folks to visit!"

First off: The auction for Marie Lu's LEGEND is up for grabs here. It's pretty awesome that you're getting a signed, hardcover before everyone else can get their paws on it.

Eron told me I can update my blog with how Callie has been doing, so the first bit is from Callie's mom, and the second is from Eron. We're on Day 14 of her being in the ICU:

"Eron and I have moved into a rhythm of life in 6 ICU. Today she had 2 periods of an hour each of being totally off the ventalator and she did just fine. That is another landmark! 2 hours will move to 24 hours per day, quickly. She holds my hand all day, she seems to save the pillow bashing for Eron. :) Go Callie!!! She is in some periods of pain and discomfort and it is heartbreaking. She sometimes nods when I can identify the pain location. The millions of cuts she received are healing and left behind are scabs, which itch her, and tons of bruising. The right side is still not working but we hope in time it will come around. Keep those positive thoughts coming her way as we hit the 2 week mark. Love to everyone. Thanks for the great comments and support."

"Today had a couple of big steps for Callie - first off, as Lola covered already, they did the first official steps of weaning her off the ventilator. They had her off the vent for as long as an hour on a couple occasions and she did fine! Next, they also got her for a bit in to a "Cardio Chair" which is basically a smaller bed that can be made to fold upright in to a chair. It was her first time sitting in two weeks and it wasn't very comfortable for her, probably because of her pelvic fractures, but she managed to sit up for over an hour and they are going to take moves toward having her in the chair slowly but surely over the coming days.
We're still not sure when they are going to transfer her out of the ICU, but the thought is within the next week. Lola or I will let you know when that happens. Part of the reason I'm just now typing this is that she was fairly awake this evening and seemed to be a bit restless, as I suppose someone would be being in a bed for two weeks and not able to talk. I asked her if she wanted some music on and amazingly she responded with an emphatic head nod, so I put on a Pandora channel that I made for her when we first started dating called "Radio Free Caledonia" and maybe it was just the morphine, but for about an hour before she went to sleep she really seemed to be enjoying it. Tomorrow I'm going to grab her iPod and swing by Best Buy and grab a portable iPod dock.
As always, she's had really good care at UCLA and while the moments are fleeting the brief bits of time where she seems to be increasingly aware are make me giddy. We'e got a long road ahead, and I can only hope I'm strong enough to do what I need for Callie. I think I might start reading her a book soon — Probably something fantasy and light filled with bad puns, as she occasionally likes. (Piers Anthony and Terry Pratchet ahoy!) I know this year has been full of changes and adventures for everyone, I haven't always been present to respond everyone in a timely manner, but just remember Callie I all wish you the best with everything that is going on, both the exciting new stuff and the tough times!"

Once again, the auction for Marie Lu's LEGEND is up for grabs here.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

First Auction: Marie Lu's LEGEND

Young adult author, Marie Lu, personally donated this advanced, hardcover copy of her upcoming, LEGEND and proceeds goes directly to our friend, Callie Rogers. On Halloween weekend, Callie was driving and her car was hit by a drunk driver. She is currently in a coma at UCLA's Intensive Care Unit. Please visit Jessi Awesome's blog to learn more about our fundraiser to help raise money for Callie's medical bills.

LEGEND has already been optioned by CBS Films to be adapted into a movie. Get your signed copy before the book comes out on November 29, 2011!

What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.

From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.

To learn more, visit www.marielu.org and www.legendtheseries.com.
Press: http://www.usatoday.com/life/books/news/2011-07-18-marie-lu-legend-dystopia_n.htm

This auction will be going up on Monday, November 14th, 2011!

Thank you all!