Ninth accident update

Written by: Bobbye Jean Manzari

Hi to all of our family, friends, and sweet strangers,

Matt has been healing extremely well in this last month! His wounds on his ears and head are closed up almost completely! His left ear is the last one with a small amount of healing left to do, but he will not need surgery to any of those wounds! We were fully expecting to have additional surgeries on his sternum and ears, but thankfully, they have closed up with time, patience, and continuous dressing changes. He has been wearing compression garments on his grafts that have helped his scars to become more flattened and the color is continuously getting closer to his natural pigment. He has been diligent with his stretches and exercises from occupational therapy, even though it is extremely painful for him. Because of his diligence, he has ripped open the skin on his neck and in his armpit, where the scar tissue is especially taught. Though painful, it is important to have these skin breaks. When they heal, it will not be as tight as it was before, accomplishing the mobility goals of his therapy. He also challenges himself to use his weaker arm and hand for daily tasks saying, “I have to be able to use this arm because we have a little guy on the way.”

His left wrist is making a miraculous recovery… They have been telling us that the nerve may regenerate, but it will take a very long time to tell. However, within the last few weeks, he has had the ability to move his wrist up and down in slight motions for a few seconds, assuring the therapists that his nerve is in fact regenerating! Many people have been praying for this to happen and we are incredibly grateful!

The electrocution caused Matt to get cataracts in his eyes. Usually, cataracts are only found in people over the age of 40, so they were surprised to find them in his eyes. After Matt’s release from the hospital, his vision started to decline rapidly and in just a few months, his cataracts became disabling for him. We just finished getting his eye surgeries 2 weeks ago and he is enjoying being able to see again!

Sleeping at night is still a struggle and he is exhausted during the daytime. We have been warned that this is a common struggle for electrocution victims. He will have a few days where he has re-set his sleeping schedule and he feels better, but his nerve pain will come in strong and mess it all up again. The doctors said it just takes time for this to all balance out. At lease he will be willing to make late night diaper changes, as he is awake anyway wink emoticon On our most recent visits to his burn doctors they were thrilled with his progress and blown away by the speed of his recovery. Everything is moving in the right direction and we happily passed the six-month mark of the accident on Christmas day. The further we get from the accident date, the happier we are.

Our son is due on January 12, but our bags are packed as they say he can come any day now! It is very surreal to think he will be here so soon. Matt is beyond excited and keeps asking why I haven’t had him yet 

As is to be expected, there have been some difficult times throughout this process. It is hard to be in a patient/caretaker relationship every day and not have moments of frustration. Overall, I feel that Matt and I have embraced our time together the last few months and grown closer in ways most couples will never experience. However, this does not mean the time has been without the testing of patience, attitude, and selflessness. We look forward to our relationship continually shifting back towards where we were before the trauma, and also seeing our relationship grow through parenthood. This New Year brings much hope and I have never been so happy to say goodbye to a previous year. God has blessed us incredibly in 2014 through the hardship, but I can’t wait to see what He has in store for 2015! Happy New Year Ya’ll!

Matt Manzari