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David Fernandez; Recovery

$5,520 of $5,500 goal

Raised by 50 people in 20 days
Created October 24, 2018
Team Fernandez
on behalf of Jackie Padgett
David was in a biking accident in Huntington Beach on Saturday morning, October 20th. They aren’t exactly sure what happened but he fell off his bike and hit his head and fractured his head. He is in ICU at the Hoag Memorial Hospital in Newport Beach. He was unconscious when the paramedics got to him, but was somewhat responsive when they got him to he hospital.

We think he may have had a heat stroke or started to feel bad, got off his bike and then fainted, hit his head and had a seizure.  He was brought to Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach and underwent a four hour surgery where they removed two parts of his skull to relieve the pressure from the brain swell. 

Here is the latest on David: They took off his head bandages and removed the draining tube that was in the back of his head and stapled his head. It was a little painful but he was great and said he’s not in pain now. The speech therapist came by to make sure he could swallow. He was able to swallow the thicker liquids (watered down jello), applesauce and eat a cracker. He could even feed himself! He was hungry and said that the food was good. Unfortunately, they are still worried about liquid getting into his lungs because he has a weak swallow, so at this point (10/24), he isn't able to eat or drink. We're hoping he'll pass the swallow test tomorrow since he hasn't had a solid meal since 10/19.

His long term memory is good, but short term is impacted. Thankfully, it seems to be getting progressively better day by day. He has two major cuts in skull that are stapled, and he keeps trying to touch them, so we have to remind him not to mess with them. At this point, they still have a sitter in the room who can watch him 24 hours a day and remind him not to mess with his tubes or touch his wounds.  

In the words of one of his friends, Phyllis - "To know Dave is to love Dave." All who know Dave know that not even a traumatic event such as this one will keep him down for long....however he does has bit of a road of recovery ahead of him which is why his niece Jackie and I decided to start this page as a way for you to lend assistance if you are able.

Needless to say all the proceeds will go to Dave (less the 2.9% set up charge and the $0.30 per donation charge).
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Things that happened today with Uncle David:
1) He swallowed his meds without having to crush them up
2) He did 4 rounds of physical therapy
3) He ate more (on his own) than he has since the accident on Oct. 20th, without much coaxing
4) He got to walk around outside for the first time since the accident!
5) I put signs up around his room to help with his short term memory and it worked! He remembered where he was, where he lives, when the accident happened, the date, etc.

Big day! We are both exhausted. Hoping for even more progress tomorrow! Until then, sleep!
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Today was the first day I saw David since Oct. 27th. He has definitely made significant progress physically. He is up and walking around, able to do things pretty well on his own. He has to wear a helmet when he's not in bed and when he takes it off, you can immediately see why. There is a huge chunk of his skull missing on the right side of this head and his head looks like it's caving in. He is very talkative, but like my Uncle Rudy said, in the afternoons, he gets REALLY impatient and repeats over and over and over that he's ready to go home. He gets up, grabs his belongings and tries to walk out of the room. When we explain that he has to stay until the doctor releases him, he gets agitated and says he's ready to go. This went on from when I got there around noon until around 6:00 p.m. today when he finally calmed down and listened when I said we'd talk to the doctor tomorrow morning and try to find out the next steps.

He is very focused on work - wanting to send emails and update people about projects - but today, all day, he thought that he was still in South Beach (where he lived over a decade ago). I would ask him things about Long Beach, but he would revert right back into talking about South Beach. As it's been the whole time, his long term memory is intact. It's his short term memory that comes and goes very quickly. Hence, him constantly forgetting that we just told him he has to stay at the hospital for now until we can get more info from the doctor.

Another issue is that he can eat, but he doesn't want to eat. We really have to coax him into even taking just a few bites of his food and he gets very annoyed when we ask him to eat more. He has lost quite a bit of weight since he's been in the hospital and he really needs to start eating more. They took him off the NG tube during the day today to see if his appetite would increase, but it didn't, so he's back on the tube tonight. Hopefully tomorrow he'll do better.

As they say in these situations, sometimes it's one step forward, two steps back or vice versa. Prayers, thoughts, positive vibes are needed from everyone - thank you for spreading the word.

With love,
Jackie
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11/11 update: We’ve gotten word that David is calling his friends and asking them to pick him up from the hospital. Please do not engage in that conversation, if he calls. Remind him that he was in a bike accident and has to stay at the rehab and go through therapy. I am at the Austin airport right now heading that way and will be there through next Saturday. We appreciate your help with helping his short term memory progress.

With love,
Jackie
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Good news! David is now able to eat and swallow without fear of asphyxiation. On Friday, the doc took him off the feeding tube to encourage him to eat, but he is pretty picky and only eats small amounts. They plan to hook the feeding tube up each night through the weekend and reevaluate on Monday. According to David’s brother, Rudy, who has been with him all week, “David is fairly cooperative in morning but a bear in afternoon.” He forgets where he is and repeats that he’s ready to go home, tries to walk out, etc. If you see him, you may think that he looks great and seems back to normal, but if you spend any time with him, you will notice that his short term memory is still spotty and the “preserveration” - getting stuck on one thought and repeating it over and over - is still occurring very frequently.

He will be in acute rehab until the doctors think he is more stable, and then he will likely be moved into another facility. Thankfully, it sounds like that facility will be in Long Beach which makes it a lot easier for friends to visit, family members to stay somewhere without having to pay for hotels, etc. Until then, he can still see visitors at the facility he’s in (Culver City). Afternoons are best because he’s busy with therapy in the mornings. I fly out to CA tomorrow morning and will be there’s through next Saturday, so I hope to see some of you there!

Again, thank you for donating to his GoFundMe page and spreading the word. As you probably know, when things like this happen, medical expenses are incredibly high and the normal living expenses/bills don’t stop. Every donation helps cover these costs. Thank you so much for that peace of mind.

With love,
Jackie
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$5,520 of $5,500 goal

Raised by 50 people in 20 days
Created October 24, 2018
Team Fernandez
on behalf of Jackie Padgett
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