Donovan "Donny" Maldonado
Tuesday and Wednesday were tough. Donny kept asking to go home and gave me a hard time whenever I asked him to do anything. But thank God Thursday and Friday were better. He still asked to go home but not as much and his mood improved a lot.
The staff at Shepherd Pathways are very patient and so far it's been a great experience. They are very informative and supportive to the caregivers. They even encouraged me to drop off Donny and have a "self care" day. They also provide counseling and have weekly group meetings for caregivers.
Yesterday we met with the doctor at Pathways and she would like Donny to take medication for attention and concentration. She thinks it will help him become more successful at meeting his therapy goals. One of Donny's biggest deficits is his distractibility and we do agree that the medication can help. We're taking the weekend to think and pray hard about the medication and will make a decision on Monday.
A couple of updates ago I mentioned another medication the neurologist wanted to give Donny for his tremors...similar to what's given to Parkinson's patients. We decided to try it out and after about 3 days decided to take him off. Donny had a really bad mood swing and we felt it was due to the side effects of that medication.
Some of you have reached out and asked for the address to where we're staying:
Woodruff Family Residence Center #309
C/O Shepherd Center
2020 Peachtree Rd.
Atlanta, GA 30309
Next week we'll find out how long we'll be in Atlanta. Please don't stop praying for Donny...God still performs miracles!!
Don't forget to like/follow:
An apartment became available sooner than originally expected so they can provide housing as soon as this Monday. If we can come up with the money to drive down, we will be heading down tomorrow. We appreciate any support you can provide. This is what we've been praying for and we appreciate you all!!
We were informed that Donny's stay can be at the minimum 4 weeks or up to 8 weeks, however, depending on our goals for him and how long it may take for him to achieve those goals, it can be longer.
We are so grateful to everyone that has been on this journey with us. We will be uploading videos/pics/updates on his Facebook page (Facebook.com/Pray4Donny). Please "Like" and "Follow" to keep up with this next chapter in Donny's healing.
Thank you all...we give Jesus all the glory!!! #Pray4Donny
Beginning next week, Donny will begin attending school 5 days per week from 2nd-6th period. At this point the therapists agree that being in school is better for him and he's very excited about spending more time in school. He will continue receiving PT, OT and ST during school hours.
Donovan has been accepted into the Shepherd Pathways day program in Atlanta. Thank God!! We are so excited and thankful for everyone's prayers. There is a 6-8 week waiting period for housing (Shepherd provides an apartment for out of state parents) so we won't be heading down until something becomes available. We will get more information soon (start date and recommended length of stay). Our next step is finding the necessary funding to cover the rehab/medical costs. We've applied to a couple of organizations and pray that they provide at least some type of financial assistance.
Lastly, Donovan continues to have Intention Tremors on his right side, especially his arm/hand. After visiting the neurologist, she recommended having Donny take daily medication to help steady his shakes (sort of like what's prescribed to Parkinson's patients). We know Donny has come so far already and has made tremendous progress so this is a difficult decision for us. We have so much faith that God will continue to heal Donny's brain but we also don't want to keep him from something that may help him. We ask for prayers for continued healing, for strength, patience and for us to make the right decisions for Donny.
We still have a long road ahead of us and some days are difficult but with your prayers and God's mercy, we will remain faithful. #Pray4Donny
Please go to Facebook.com/Pray4Donny and "Like" and "Follow" the page. We've uploaded pictures and videos plus post updates on the page.
A few updates:
After the new year Donny started attending school 3 times a week (instead of 2) and has been doing great. The staff and kids have been really wonderful in supporting him and he looks forward to school days. We will be increasing the hours after the winter recess in a couple of weeks.
After Donny's accident his left eye dropped a little and floated outward. He also complained of very blurry vision. The floating has gotten a little better but we still had his eyes checked out.
He was seen by a Pediatric Ophthalmologist back in October, a Neuro-Ophthalmologist last week and a Pediatric Ophthalmologist and Strabismus surgeon yesterday.
The Neuro-Ophth. suspected an injury to Donny's cranial fourth nerve (Superior Oblique) causing an optic nerve palsy. He said sometimes after a year the eye may fix itself but at this point, he would need surgery to have it corrected. He referred Donny to the eye surgeon just to be sure. And because God is soooooo good, the surgeon said Donny does not need surgery, praise God!! All 3 doctors agree that Donny has astigmatism in both eyes (worse in the left). He probably had it before the accident but it went unnoticed and the accident just made it worse. So Donny will need glasses - no surgery!!
Lastly, because of the snow storm, we will be heading down to Georgia today (stopping at Florida first to see family). We've spoken with the Shepherd Center staff and everything is in place for Donny to have his evaluation next week. So exciting!!
We are so thankful to everyone that helped make this happen. We really appreciate your prayers and support. Please pray for continued healing in Donny's brain in Jesus' name. Thank you.