Thoughts About Mike’s Hand

I was a bit shaken with the video visit with my brother Mike, yesterday.  Mike was hospitalized with some serious health issues.  The medical folks aren’t even sure he can be removed from the respirator.  However, it was something (comparably) minor that caught my attention. Mike’s hand was in an unnatural position. It looked painful. […]

Mike’s Gnarled Arm, Still on Respirator

I had another video visit with Mike* today. It took me an entire day (from yesterday’s video call) to realize that he did not have a nasogastric tube for feeding. I was also upset to see his hand is such an awkward position. Was it cramping? Mike didn’t seem to be in pain, although he […]

Facetime with Mike on a Respirator

I guess my brother Mike* is out of the Intensive Care Unit because I got a FaceTime call from the hospital for a video visit.  Even if Mike could talk, he is on a respirator which prevents anybody from speaking.  The docs called Dave (my younger brother) and me over the weekend to tell us […]

Quarantine Portrait Series: Self Portrait – Slight Asymmetry

I introduced asymmetry in yesterday’s portrait accidentally. I was too tired to fix it and published it as it was. My artistic error gave way to musings on asymmetry and my efforts to understand Mike, my older brother who is autistic, nonverbal and low functioning. I’ve been thinking a lot about Mike these days.  He […]

Hospital Communication: Do Not Consider that Your Message is Understood the First Time

My brother Mike is in hospital. It is bad enough that he is not allowed visitors, but he is autistic, low functioning and nonverbal. Mike has been a regular at the hospital. His care givers pay close attention to keeping him healthy. His problems are now worse than they have ever been. He is 70 […]

Quarantine Portrait Series: Video Visit with Mike in Hospital, Post ‘Urgent’ Procedure Call

The doc told me yesterday that my brother Mike might not make it unless I approved her request for intubation. Apparently the urgent need for a ventilator evaporated some time overnight.  Mike can’t fend for himself. He is low functioning, autistic and nonverbal. Today, on a conference call with Dave, my younger brother, Mike’s group […]

Quarantine Portrait Series: Mike in Respiratory Distress

My brother Mike is autistic, nonverbal and low functioning. He is in the hospital across the country from me. I think he looks peaceful here, but he was anything but. He continues to struggle with breathing. [Note: I just now talked to his doc in the midst of composing this post.]  The hospital found a […]

Quarantine Portrait Series: Mike, Very Stressed

My brother Mike is in the hospital. Even if he was nearby I wouldn’t be able to visit because of the COVID19 quarantine. I’m sure COVID is the reason that they are offering video visits. The only problem with visiting my brother in video mode is that Mike is nonverbal, autistic and low functioning. I […]

Quarantine Portrait Series: Tele-Portrait with Hand Gestures

I had the third hospital televisit with my brother Mike today. He is on the east coast, I live in California. Mike has never spoken, he is low functioning and autistic. Mike was quite still during our visit. I repeated his name many times, in hope of some kind of change in expression, to no […]

Quarantine Portrait Series: Another Hospital Visit with Mike

This is the second day in a row that I saw my brother Mike*. I saw him yesterday, but before that I hadn’t seen him since 2013 at his geriatric group home. Now he’s in hospital on the east coast and I’m on the west coast. Mike is nonverbal, low functioning and autistic. I almost […]