Well, I spent most of today at the hospital. Laz went in this morning, and when I spoke to him this morning was very much the bearer of grim news. As I left this afternoon Bron was okay – still stable – but there’s a lot of pessimism going around certain groups. I’ll reiterate the details as I now know them, although it’s like a giant game of Chinese whispers, and I’ve heard some conflicting tidbits, so take all this with a grain of salt. I believe Kim knows more or less what’s really going on, as does perhaps Laz, and of course Bron’s parents.
Anyway, the best guess as to what happened at the beach was a heart attack. She was at the beach with her family and some friends, and with the help of two experienced nurses who were around at the time, they resuscitated Bron, and kept her going until the MICAs arrived. Another ambulance arrived, and then eventually she was airlifted to the Alfred. As far as I know, not having been told otherwise, she was unconscious pretty much from the start of all this, and hasn’t regained consciousness since.
Some time on Sunday or Monday they put her into a medically induced coma, in order to keep her stable. It appears her kidneys have failed, and her body started to react to that on Monday. The fear of course was that her internal organs would shutdown as a result. They weren’t able to put her onto kidney dialysis in her condition at the time, although she was put on it early this afternoon.
Additionally, some fluid in her lungs – possibly vomit – has caused respiratory problems – I believe leading to a lung infection. While there’s a lot of conflict, and the situation’s probably changing all the time, the common story seems to be that one lung has shut down, and the other is operating at well below capacity. This is clear when you see her – her body is heaving with each breath, clearly straining.
There has also been other problems, such as a rather high body temperature, and concern that she was losing muscle control in her hands and feet – leading to very minor spasms. She did seem to cool down over the day though, which is probably a good sign. She was still noticeably warmer than normal to touch when I left at about 7:30.
Apparently she was given a 1% chance to survive, yesterday, which may have just been the night. That she has survived is obviously a good sign, although the nurses are concerned that she’s not showing enough improvement otherwise. I overhead bits and pieces of Kim talking to her nurse, and it seems they’re allowing another 48 hours of observation before… something. I didn’t hear what. I believe it would be normal procedure, at this point in an older patient (e.g. 50), to conduct an MRI or somesuch to determine if there’s any brain activity… there’s clearly concern at this point that her brain has suffered irreparable damage – indeed, the nurse this morning told Laz that at the absolute best, even if she did survive she would have massive brain damage. But I think that’s conjecture at this point, since there’s been no MRI or similar test performed.
I would assume that an MRI can’t be performed while she’s hooked up to all the drips and various other machines. I think it’s pretty obvious at this point that they’re what’s keeping her alive at this point. From the way Bron’s mum talks – although I don’t know if it’s a derivative of what she’s been told by the nurse – she should “by rights” – whatever the fuck that is – have died on Sunday, and now she’s just living on borrowed time… I got so angry when her mum said that, going on about Bron’s journey and her journey and our journey, and when it’s your time it’s your time, and all that… I mean, some people think that’s just her way of coping, but I’m sorry, I’m not going to give up. And I don’t think she should bring everyone else down by spouting such negativity.
I mean, to be fair, obviously how I feel right now – which is pretty fucking awful as is – compares in no way with how Bron’s family must feel. And I can understand everyone’s more than a little emotional at the moment… but still… maybe I’m just good old arrogant me, but it ain’t over ’till it’s over, and I ain’t never giving up. I hope Bron doesn’t either.
My thoughts go out to her tonight, and her family. And also all her friends, who are understandably a little put out by all this. Especially Kim. She’s lost so much of late – she especially doesn’t need this right now.