Sonia’s Medical Fund

Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 17, 2019


Sonia's PEG feeding tube has opened another world for most of us here. We have some pretty decent culinary skills in the family, and now we’ve added another on—making meals for mom that are processed in a blender.

Mom was sent home with a preparation guide for a commercial adult formula, but also with recipes for “real” food. We’ve now started her on the latter, using a combo of egg whites, squash, banana, bread, a little oil, and water. She’s tolerating it well, so far. Everything is liquefied in a blender and strained to make sure the meals do not clog up the tube. She’s loading up on her calories so that her frame fills out, and also so that she gets the full nutrient load and the full benefits of her meds. Feeding happens five times a day, four hours apart, starting at 5am. 😳😴 This is why we’re all still exhausted, especially mom—she can’t be lying flat on her back when she eats because she might regurgitate the food, increasing her risk for aspiration once again. So, we wake her up and transfer her to a chair. We are so looking forward to getting her back to three meals a day. 😊

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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 15, 2019

The love and support of family can certainly help boost one’s recovery from illness. But there’s nothing like getting the old high school gang—or part of it, at least— back together for some laughs and reminiscing to perk you up even more. Rizal High School, batch 1955, reprezent! (Do people still say that?😂) Thank you for visiting, Tita Medy and Tita Linda. Thank you for the pasalubong, too!

*Sonia can be quite shy about receiving visitors, though she eventually warms up to her guests once they’re there. That said, we’d appreciate a heads up before you come over so we can let you know the best time to see her. Thank you for understanding. ❤️

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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 14, 2019

We won’t ever tire of saying “Thank you” to all of you who are praying for us, spending time with us, and are continuing to help us raise funds for Sonia’s hospitalization and recovery at home. Without your help, we would not have been able to complete the treatments mom needed at the time they were needed.

In 19 days, we’ve racked up a hospital bill with the total gross amount of Php953,894.53. 😱 Her senior citizen discount, VAT exemption, and Philhealth covered part of this total. You enabled us to pay in installments midway, which lessened the blow as we settled the bill during the discharge process. Your contributions also covered a significant part of the final bill🙏🏼

We have a few more days to go before this campaign ends—thank you to those who have donated and will donate after mom’s discharge As some of you have expressed your intentions to donate in kind, yes, gifts in the form of supplies are now also welcome. We will list these in a separate post. Maraming salamat po!



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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 14, 2019

😴 We’l just need to rest our brains for a short while then we’ll begin posting updates again tomorrow. In brief: Mom’s first full day at home (yesterday) was pretty much uneventful; and that’s a good thing! Thank goodness! 😊

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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 12, 2019

DAY 19 (Wednesday, June 12): It’s Philippine Independence Day! (Maligayang araw ng kasarinlan!) It’s also mom’s discharge day. Finally! Her day of freedom from those nasty IV lines, catheters, needles, etc. Time to go home, see the outdoors for real, and lie in her own bed, among many other things. Thank you to everyone who continue to pray for us and send their support.

As many of you probably know, this is only the beginning of a different chapter—her road to complete recovery continues at home We’re all still bleary-eyed and tired from the almost three weeks’ hospital stay. I don’t even remember all the discharge instructions they gave (I had to call our discharge nurse again for some of the info about her medicines). And we’re scrambling to get her an oxygen concentrator, a nebulizer, and a bunch of other things.

CAN’T WAIT TO GET BACK TO NORMAL: She was so excited to be home, she wanted to walk from the door to her room. She wasn’t supposed to exert too much today, but we let her get a feel of it since she had been on a hospital bed for nearly three weeks. Just a few steps left her winded, but it was a good start.

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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 10, 2019

DAY 17 (Monday, June 10): What an exhausting day; or maybe it’s this whole thing catching up on all of us. We haven’t been sleeping well these past couple of weeks—turning in late, and waking up early—as we take turns watching over mom, waiting for her doctors to do their rounds, etc. (Pretty sure there are those among you who understand how it is.) Or working our bums off to shore up the funds to pay for this hospital stay. As always, we thank all of you who have contributed, and will contribute, to Sonia’s Medical Fund to help supplement what our family is able to set aside.

So, she now has a PEG tube (or, percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tube). It’s a feeding tube through which food is fed straight to her stomach. She’ll get most of her food, as well as her medicines, through that—a good way to ensure that she gets the right amount of nutrients her body needs. People with Parkinson’s tend to have swallowing issues (among many other issues), which is probably what led to her aspiration pneumonia. If there will be no complications, she may be discharged in a couple of days. Freedom!

THE ROAD TO 80: We have much to celebrate and plenty to be grateful for. This year, Sonia turns 80 in December. Though there have been many times when she would have preferred to give up and be freed from all this suffering, she rallies, somehow, and pulls through. We’re happy to see that she can be well enough to celebrate her milestone later this year! Looking forward to it!

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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 09, 2019

DAY 16 (Sunday): So, because Sonia’s “visa” to the Pearly Gates has not yet been approved, she’ll be with us for a while. We are very happy about that, of course! Thanks to all of you who are helping us make it possible. ❤️

Today is a rest day in preparation for tomorrow’s procedure—the insertion of a PEG. Looking forward to getting that over with so she can finally go home. .

NOW PLAYING: Pearly Shells (and the rest of the Hawaiian Album) by the Ray Coniff singers. What a hoot! 😜 It’s giving me major flashbacks to our childhood. This album, as well as the Honey album, was played on repeat on our portable turntable back in the day. (Movie themes by Michel Legrand, next.

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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 08, 2019

DAY 15 (Saturday): We are nearly halfway through our fundraising goal—our hearts are bursting with joy and gratitude! ❤️ Maraming salamat po sa mga nag-donate at sa mga magdo-donate pa. It’s always a difficult decision to have to ask for financial help from others when we’re supposed to be the ones to provide for our families. But, sometimes, it can be more than we can handle. (Total bill as of today, June 8, is Php856,163.66.) Thank you for helping us bear that burden.

Thank you as well to Sonia’s medical team—the doctors, nurses, and nursing aides—who continue to watch over her (even though she can be cranky at times).

PEG INSERTION: It looks like she finally agreed to have a PEG (feeding tube) inserted into her tummy. The procedure is happening on Monday morning. It’s a simple procedure and, if there are no complications, she can probably be sent home by June 12th.

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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 07, 2019

DAY 14 (Friday): So, she moved to a new room again. She's out of the Telemetry unit and is now in a regular room. Yay! Progress. Still on the Cardiovascular floor, with windows facing southeast (I think) this time. If you look closely, you'll see the dome of the church near her home (Sta. Clara de Montefalco). 😊

She had a meltdown last night, with feelings of persecution, paranoia, and all things negative. That's what happens to her when she's been in the hospital and lying on her back for a long time. She was in a better mood this morning. But we told her doctors that, if she's not going home yet, she will need to get off the bed, sit on the chair, use the bathroom, etc. - - all with assistance, of course.

Part of the reason why she's still here is that she's still trying to decide whether she wants a PEG, or g-tube, inserted so that she can ingest her food and medicines via that. Since she's at risk for aspiration, and is unable to properly chew and swallow most of the time, a feeding tube might be a good way to prevent future aspirations, and to ensure the optimum intake of nutrients. She and I had a conversation about it this morning, and she said yes.

Whether she will remember that conversation or not remains to be seen. But I told her doctor already. So they'll bring in the gastro-enterologist to assess her and explain the procedure to her. Once again, fingers crossed.

And, once again, thank you.

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Update posted by Rowena Santos On Jun 06, 2019

DAY 13 (Thursday): FINALLY! Sonia is out of the ICU! She’s been moved to the Telemetry unit on the Cardiovascular floor—she will still be monitored almost as closely as she was in the ICU, but now she can have someone with her in the room. Visiting hours are also not as restricted as in the ICU. Plus, she now can see outside through windows that face east

The latest chest X-ray and ultrasound showed her lungs are now clear but she’ll need to beef up the production of albumin (a kind of protein) in her body to lower the risk of developing fluids again. For this one, proper diet is key. But since she’s already having a challenging time chewing and swallowing, the doctors recommend the insertion of a g-tube (or PEG), a feeding tube that goes straight to the stomach, so that she receives the right amount of nutrients. She hasn’t said “yes” yet, but we’re not getting violent reactions from her. Fingers crossed she agrees.

Now, the chest exams also got a glimpse of the liver. They saw a mass in the liver that they may refer to the gastroenterologist who may need to look into it. It never ends... Hay

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Carmina de Dios

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Anonymous

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Anonymous

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Jon Marquez

Backed On Jun 08, 2019 Amount Hidden

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My family and I hope for the best and will keep her in our pray. Pareng Dino, let me know if there’s anything else I can do.

Dou Decapia

Backed On Jun 08, 2019 Amount Hidden

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Emerald and Marc Castro

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Carol Gancia

Backed with ₱10231.00 On Jun 03, 2019

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Thank you, Owen, for reaching out to everyone. I know it must not have been easy. I know what it's like to have illness in the family coupled with financial strain. We've all been there. Wishing your mom a speedy recovery. I'm so happy to hear she is improving. Much love, Carol

Carol Gancia

Backed with ₱200.00 On Jun 03, 2019

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Anonymous

Backed with ₱5000.00 On Jun 01, 2019

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Wish she will have a speedy recovery and many miracles to happen.

Linh

Backed with ₱8000.00 On Jun 01, 2019

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