Just a short update tonight. The difference between Yesterday-Ben and Today-Ben was really amazing. He still has a long, long way to go, but this afternoon I began to see flashes of the real Benjamin coming through. His walks were longer and more confident, and even when he was sitting he was actually sitting up instead of leaning to the side against a wall. He also listened to his iPod today for the first time since the surgery. Tonight, as I was leaving the room, he had surrounded himself with stuff - his iPad, iPod, DVD player, a book - and was doing his thing where he was watching part of a movie in one language on one device while simultaneously watching a different movie on a second device in an entirely different language. That's Ben.
There was talk yesterday that his abdominal drain might come out today, but now the doctor is saying the Ben might actually go home with it. There is nothing really worrisome going on, just still some bile coming out. Not enough to be concerned about a leak, but clearly enough that the doctor wants it to still have somewhere to go.
Ben started having sips of clear liquids today, and handled it well enough that tomorrow he is going to graduate to his regular Gatorade drink. It's tiny, tiny steps just making sure that everything is working properly without overwhelming his system.
The other thing we learned today is that Ben will be in the hospital until at least Sunday. As well as he is doing, he still needs those extra days to be sure that he is safe to travel. As much as we all miss home, we are in no particular rush. The very last thing I want is to have a medical emergency in the car when we are in the middle of nowhere.
Finally, Ben got moved to a different room late in the day. The one he had been in was specifically right next to the nurse's station, which the doctor wanted immediately post-surgery due to Ben's increased risk of autistic behaviors causing issues. Now that Ben is further along in his recovery, it is safe to be in a room that is further away. More importantly, it is a much larger and much quieter room. In the old room we were packed in like sardines and had to wiggle out of the way every time a nurse or a tech came in to do something. With the new room there is plenty of space to sit comfortably and still give the medical staff plenty of room to work in. It also has an actual full-sized couch that doubles as a bed, which means Ben's mom will be able to rest more comfortably. The room is so much quieter, it is almost unbelievable. I am hoping that when I return in the morning I will find that Sara and Ben both finally had a truly restful night.