Saturday, August 9, 2008

Over and Out

Ksschhhhhhhhhhh (That’s the walkie-talkie sound that comes after "over and out")

Quick story...Dad went to swim laps at the pool the other day. Yes, he is such an athlete. Well, around his last lap, he started to look around the pool for the ladder. He scanned the pool's perimeter, finding no way out other than pulling himself up and over the edge. Furthermore, the water level ended about two feet before the edge of the pool. He knew this exit would be interesting, especially since he lost so much of his upper body strength after both surgeries. He said a quick prayer, asking God to divert eyes as he took a big breath, and shimmied his way up the wall. Let’s just say he described his efforts as part army crawl, part walrus. The road to recovery can be oh so humbling.

I cannot tell you what an encouragement you all have been to me. Looking back, I thank God for all the support and prayers from all of you. This allowed me to post more specific prayer requests, but more importantly, it enabled everyone to follow our day-by-day journey of healing. Through writing this blog, I articulated and shared my feelings in a deeper way than I would have on my own. Thank you.

Feel free to email me any time. If you have any great PR writing positions for me, I'm looking for a job in January. Right now, I'm doing a media relations internship for Operation Christmas Child, a project of Samaritan’s Purse. It's been an incredible opportunity and I just love what I'm doing there. God Bless you all.

Kelly Yerkovich

Monday, July 21, 2008

Where have I been?

Between a vacation to Colorado and some plain exhaustion and laziness on my part, it's been quite some time since I've updated the blog. While away, I listened to a voice mail from Dad. The strength and normalcy of his voice brought tears to my eyes. The familiar Daddy sound conquered the days of whispers, resembling the likeness of his pre-surgery voicemail.

Last Sunday, Dad and I went to the Orange County Fair, where his Kung Fu group performed demonstrations. He joined his friends on stage, participating in the inspiration instead of the wresteling. His instructor introduced him as a 7th degree black belt who is still recovering from significant surgery. I've never felt more proud watching someone just sit on stage.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

More Answers and Updates: From Kay
We want all you prayer partners to know just how huge your prayers and what they accomplished. The technical name for Milan's condition that prompted the emergency surgery is Cardiac Tamponade. This is a rapid accumulation of fluid in the pericardial sack that surrounds the heart. This build up puts pressure on the heart causing it to be unable to pump adequately to supply oxygen to the body. I did some research and every article said this is a life-threatening condition that is a medical emergency. The condition progresses rapidly and is "universally fatal" if not diagnosed and treated promptly.

Our experience in the hospital on Saturday was anything but prompt. All I can say is God was answering our prayers to keep Milan alive in spite of their snail's pace. Had I known what I know now, I would have been screaming up and down the halls to get a doctor into the room sooner. All day it was nurses and nurse practitioners. I realize now, in hindsight, that I was watching Milan's body shut down that Saturday. He was so weak he could not stay awake. He slept through a blood draw and the echocardiogram. His hands and feet were freezing because blood was being diverted to the vital organs. He did not eat one bite of food for two days. His skin on his chest was purple and molted on Saturday by noon. I found out later this was another sign of his body shutting down. He looked five months pregnant (his body could not get rid of the fluid because his kidneys were not working and his liver was swollen according to Dr. Seleah). His legs were si swollen he had no visible knees or ankles. In spite of this his oxygen levels (according to the monitor) were good which is why they kept telling me "he's stable".
The doctor that finally did walk into the room, Dr. Seleah, is known through out the hospital as "the genius". He was called in on the case because he is a kidney specialist and Milan's kidneys were barely functioning. Turns out he has other specialties as well. It only took him 45 seconds to determine Milan was in big trouble and he started ordering everyone around to get him into ICU NOW! and into emergency surgery ASAP. It all happened so fast after Dr. Seleah came. I credit him with saving Milan's life or… should I say, God used him to save Milan's life.
We have been home for 10 days and make progress day by day. Milan's lost 15 pounds of fluid and looks like himself again. He is very tired and a bit discouraged by how low his energy level is. It does get a tiny bit better every day. I keep reminding him how much his body has gone through. I'm surprised how exhausted I am too and have slept a lot. It was a very difficult emotional experience for me to see Milan so weak and feel discounted by the nurses who kept telling me all the signs I just described ( I pointed them all out) were no big deal. When I started asking questions after the second surgery, boy did I get the run-around.
We saw Dr. Laxs who did the original repair several days ago. His work on Milan's heart was very successful and the repaired valve is working perfectly. He was on vacation when all this happened and was very troubled by our story and all that happened. He assured us it would be looked into and discussed among their entire team.
So you all had a part in Milan's survival and we continue to need your prayers for patience and wisdom as we recover from this ordeal. Thanks to all of you who posted your love and prayers on the blog. Your words of love and encouragement have meant so much to us. Love and Thanks, Kay

Sunday, July 6, 2008

A Stroll With Daddy

Today, Dad and I went for a walk. We made it about halfway up our hill, and then turned around to come back home. The incline challenged Dad in a way the slick, level hospital halls did not. Throughout the day, Dad read your encouraging comments and sat on the patio, feeling invigorated by the lively wind. In the afternoon, I drove home from the gym and found the grandkids climbing on Papa, adorning him with hugs and smiles. Each day, Dad gains strength, stretching his limits and finding more normalcy every moment. I'll update in a few days. Thank you for your love and support.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Message from Kay

It's time you heard from Kay. Kelly is an amazing writer and I appreciate her keeping all of you up to date. I cannot tell you how much we appreciate your prayers and concern. Your comments have been encouraging, inspiring and we feel your love. This has been a very challenging 18 days for both of us in different ways. We are both tired physically and emotionally and can finally rest now that we are home. Milan probably did not sleep more than three or four hours at a stretch for the last 18 days. In the last few days, I am finally feeling the emotions from all I experienced and I have alternated between crying and feeling angry that no doctor came into our room for nine hours on the day he ended up in emergency surgery. We were told by a number of different people that Milan may not be here today if he did not have such a strong heart. All the medical people gasped when they heard how much fluid was around his heart. (Almost 7 cups). It is God's work that he is alive and I'm so thankful.

It's funny how we forget be thankful for the little thing until they are taken away. Eating, bodily functions and just going outside into fresh air are all things we take for granted until we cannot do them. Last night (our last night in the hospital) we danced (obviously it was slow dance) in our room to Frank Santria's "Fly Away With Me". What a joy to be able to share that moment. We both cried.

Keep praying for us that we can regain our energy for ministry and heal from the trama of the whole experience. I was strong when I needed to be, but now I feel exhausted and tearful. Thanks from the bottom of our hearts for taking the time to read, pray and fight the spiritual battle with us. We love you all and are grateful that we have the hope of heaven where every tear will be wiped away and we shall be completely healed, phycially, emotionally and experience all God as stored up for us in our eternal home.

Love, Kay

Home Sweet Home

My favorite golden sunset light shimmers over the patio at the Yerkovich backyard. Our two big trees rustle in the summer breeze and quite music sings in the background. Today, we left the beeping, barking monitors at the hospital, along with the needles, stiff beds, breathing tubes, and soggy food. Praise God Daddy Milan is home sweet home! He did bring about 15 different prescriptions with him, but now he'll get a dose of the best medicine: home.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

As my fingers type, I am brushing my teeth and printing all these sweet comments for my Dad. I'm on my way back up to UCLA today after a day at home to pay bills, water plants, run errands, and get a clean supply of clothes for mom.

Doctors decided not to use a needle to draw the fluid out of Dad'd lungs. Instead, they're hoping the right medicines will do the trick. I think he feels done being stuck with things. I believe Dad will move from ICU to the floor today. Pray for good nurses. Doctors want Dad to lose 10 pounds of fluid before he can come home. He's been walking tons to try and speed the process along.

Lots of love. Thank for the prayers and support. Reading your comments makes me cry.