Friday, January 16, 2009

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Today Christy had a procedure done called a Tracheostomy (see picture to left).  People often refer to it as a "Trach".   It's a surgical procedure on the neck to open a direct airway through an incision in the windpipe or trachea.  This was presented to the family by the doctors as an option because it is the method of choice for long term mechanical ventilation (being on the breathing machine).  The family decided that this would be a more comfortable way for Christy to breathe.  The tube in her mouth seemed very uncomfortable for her, and could possibly damage her vocal cords if it stayed there for too long.  Since the doctors feel this may be a lengthy recovery, we didn't want to have a tube in the mouth making oral care difficult and cause unnecessary discomfort for her mouth & face.  With a trach in, Christy doesn't have to have the pressure and stickiness of the tape holding the breathing tube (ETT) in place.  The suction can still be hooked to a trach to help remove mucus.  The trach can also still be hooked to her ventilator.  Christy received a short acting type of sedation and some pain medication for this procedure.  It was done at the bedside by surgeons who use a scope to look down the airway.  The procedure itself is quick- maybe 15 or 20 minutes.  The recovery will be mostly watching the new "wound" heal by monitoring for bleeding and keeping it clean.  Christy is receiving intermittent pain medication for any discomfort she may be having. A trach is reversible, so when she is conscious again and can maintain her own airway, it can be closed.  Christy is on minimal settings on the ventilator.  She is on the mode where she is initiating all of the breaths on her own.  The machine supports each breath and delivers oxygen. 

Today while Kaeo and I were in visiting, we saw some exciting eye movement.  Christy was coughing and needed some suctioning, which can be uncomfortable... with this stimulation, she opened both her eyes.  Christy has opened her eyes before but we actually saw some movement of the eye balls as if she was trying to look around.  When we call Christy's name and ask her to open her eyes, she does not, but it was wonderful to see her pretty eyes open up as if she was awake.  We don't know when Christy will come out of her coma, but it's the little things like these that make us so hopeful that it will be sooner than later.  We stand by daily hoping and praying for our miracle!

I also wanted to take the time tonight to mention that there will be a fundraiser held to dampen the burden of medical bills accumulated during Christy's recovery.  It will be on February 28th, at Pipeline Cafe, from 6:00 pm to 2:00 am.  There will be food and live entertainment.  The tickets will be sold for $30.00 per person.   It will be a lively celebration in honor of a woman we all know to be beautiful inside and out.  I will pass on more of the details as I receive them.  And, if you feel that you may be able to help out with donations for door prizes or with recruiting bands or advertisement or anything else please let me know. 
good night xoxo, gabby


  1. Gabby,

    Thank you again for your tireless updates on Chris. It's great to hear that Chris is coming along like the champ we all know her to be. We all know how much of a fighter she is....she's been through so much, it's only fair that she be given the time she needs to overcome this....of which she will of course!

    I'm not a religious person by any means, but I find myself having conversations with God several times a day asking for him to heal Chris and give her the strength she needs to do this. All of you are in my prayers as well. You all have taught me so much about love throughout this ordeal.....ALL of you are absolutely amazing!

    Take good care of yourselves and much love to all...

    Charla and Wyatt

  2. HI Gabby,
    Chris (Maggie's brother) & Vika from Boise, ID. We've been following your blog daily since we heard of Chris's terrible ordeal. Our thoughts and prayers are with Chris and pray for her recovery.
    Although we can't be there for the fundraiser next month, we'll be sending Maggie a donation for 2 tickets. Again, we are wishing Chris & her family all the best and hope for a speedy recovery under God's loving care.

    Chris & Vika Pilayo

  3. Aloha Gabby,
    I just wanted to say thank you for taking the time out to create this Blog and update us all (family and friends).
    I read about the fundraiser and I just wanted to lend my services. You can call me, Kau'i, at 626-7918. I would love to help in anyway that I can. Donald and I are cousins, we also went to school from K-12 together.
    If there is anything I can do, please let me know. My family sends our prayers (daily) and love. We are all connected right through Christy and for Christy.

    Mahalo Nunui a E Malama Pono!

  4. Dear Christy and Gail:
    I just wanted you to know that our thoughts and prayers are constantly with you both. Gail I know this is the hardest thing in the world for you to go through. God's tests are hard, but you are one strong lady and your strength will be Christy's strength. So hang in there my tough cousin. We love you.
    Christy, I want to tell you how much we care about you and that you are loved so much. When you were a baby, I taught you to swim. Now my dear, I want you to swim up and up and up - out of that coma and come back to us. Keep fighting as we want you back right away!!
    Gabby, thank you so much for this blog. It is appreciated by everyone. And, we never miss a day.
    Love to everyone. Gwen and David Bell

  5. Gabby:
    This is Vika Pilayo from Boise, ID - I know my husband wrote earlier but I wanted to write a note also - What a gracious person you are to write the information on Christy when I'm sure your job alone is overwhelming in caring for so many people. We love Gail so much and are keeping everyone in our prayers. We met Christy when we were there and we know that she is loved by all. We will keep up on her progress.
    Vika Pilayo

  6. Aloha Gabby,
    You are an angel sent from God. May you be forever blessed, you are a gift to Christy and to the many others you care for.

    Regarding the benefit, I will ask some friends if their kokua is possible to perform (Zaysha and Jenn from Simple Souls, MaiTJ, Carly from The Girlas, Micky and Jimbo from Ookla, Mailani and Lei from Keahiwae). I do have some items (perhaps black pearl earrings, CDs from the above listed bands, and maybe some handmade hawaiiana crafts--towel sets; clay pua; kupuna patchwork blankets---) that I would be happy to donate if appropriate. Let me know :)

    Again, mahalo for your kindness.

    Prayers come with this message,
    Alice Paet-Ah Sing