We are settled in florida (almost) and Steve is dedicated to his therapy and making wonderful progress with his hands and arms.
We feel confident he will be cradling our first grandchild upon her arrival in January!
Happy New Year!
First and foremost we once again want to thank all our friends and family from around the world for their constant and continuous support of our journey in Atlanta. We have received so many wonderful cards, cookies, and wonderful stories.
Steve has worked his way to a healthier condition while being a patient on the wonderful fourth floor at the Shepherd Center. We can't thank all the nurses and techs and physical therapist enough for getting Steve in a healthier condition to continue his journey.
August 2 Ginny and Steve moved to a different part of the Shepherd Center into their very own apartment on site.
So now Team Orthwein, headed by our wonderful friend Joan Baer, take care of Steve totally on our own and he gets to "Day Program" every weekday by 8:30 and works hard till late in the afternoon with a new team of therapists on the third floor.
For this floor a patient must set goals. Steve's goals for this journey are to be able to operate his chair by a hand throttle instead of "sip and puff" through a straw. Steve is also going to tackle the aquatic program here. It is of top caliber and we are all going to get educated so we will be ready for Florida.
Steve also would very much like to get his hand working enough so he could feed himself instead of us constantly giving him broccoli!!!
We have a new lovely blue van which was delivered by our great friends Peter Von Gontard and Ray Laidet to Atlanta and we have been out and about several times. We love visiting Judy and Dolph out at their farm in vinings. Friday night we went out to a wonderful dinner with Choate and Yale graduates Dolph Orthwein, Sandy Carden Rob Mccallum.
This was quite a reunion!
Then on Sunday, Howard Stephens and Spencer Burke spent the day with Steve and there were more great stories!!
Again thank you to everyone. We are staying in Atlanta as things move in a positive way. This is the best place to prepare everyone for
"Life after Injury."
This is their motto and they are very positive and excellent at achieving this.
Love from Steve & Ginny
.Quick Update- Just because we have been quiet does not mean we have not been busy! Steve and Ginny are hard at work at Sheppard Center in Atlanta, with many hours of therapy and education for both. Steve's muscles are very tight, which contributes to muscle spasming. This has created a bit of a road block for his physical therapy. But we are working closely with the physicians to address the issue and have a game plan in place.
To no one's surprise, Steve is putting every bit of energy he has into regaining movement and improving upon each day's progress.
Again, THANK YOU to everyone for the continued prayers and the ongoing support - know that it has carried us through this difficult time.
Steve's hard work is paying off! Because he continues to show many positive and promising signs of improvement, The Shepherd Center has extended his discharge date to July 20th. Assuming he continues on this trajectory, his discharge date can again be extended.
Steve recently went on an outing with the crew from the Shepherd Center - brace yourselves Cardinals fans - Steve attended a Braves game! Meanwhile, Ginny has changed residences and is now in her own apartment just down the street from Steve. Her new address is:
40 Peachtree Valley Road NE
Atlanta, GA 30309
We realize how blessed we are to have Steve for Father's Day this weekend and appreciate the love and support on this long road to recovery.
Happy Father's Day!
Steve and Ginny have now been at the Shepherd Center for two weeks. Steve continues to work hard in therapy 6-7 hours a day while Ginny stays very busy managing life.
Progress is slow, but with Steve's great attitude, and the support of his many loved ones, we all have faith he will continue to regain movement. Steve is determined to walk out of the Shepherd Center, whenever that may be!
When Steve is not in therapy, he is resting. Rehabilitation is exhausting and leaves him energy for little else. Because his lung capacity remains compromised by the injury, even light conversation wears hims out. As Steve's health improves, we look forward to seeing more familiar faces in Atlanta. Until then, please keep the cards coming and we are requesting quiet time for our patient! Love and thanks to everyone ... xx
Ginny and Steve are settling into a routine after a very special weekend of wedding celebrations for Robert and Tiffany. The team at the Sheppard Center went to great lengths to accommodate our intimate group helping make it a memorable day. The bride and groom wed in the Secret Garden surrounded by lots and lots of beautiful flowers with a reception on the 7th floor following the ceremony. The wedding was sweet and full of much love and happiness.
No rest for the weary though! Steve resumed physical therapy Saturday and is back at it in full force this week. Though Steve is determined and maintains a great attitude, he along with the rest of the family realize he MAY improve and he MAY NOT improve. Meanwhile, he is spending 6-7 hours doing therapy each day and is pooped not just because of his strenuous schedule, but also because his lungs are only working at 75-80% capacity making breathing, talking, etc. literally exhausting.
We expect Steve to transition from inpatient to outpatient sometime towards the end of June at which point he will continue doing rehab at Sheppard until he (and the family) are ready to move on.
The love, support, cards, messages, baskets of food, and prayers are going a long way to keep our spirits high. THANK YOU to everyone for keeping us in your hearts.
We shared a very special, intimate evening together last night at the Piedmont Driving Club for the Rehearsal Dinner celebrating Tiffany and Robert. In under a week, collective forces planned a beautiful dinner.
This was Steve's first formal outing since the accident and he did great! He was dressed in a suit and all smiles. He seems to be getting the hang of things and couldn't have been prouder of Robert and his bride to be.
Steve's speech was a tender moment for everyone in the room as we realize how fortunate we are to be together this weekend.
As far as progress, Steve continues to improve and adapt to the new normal with immense determination to make the best of the situation.
Love to all on this special day!
Steve and Ginny have now been in Atlanta for nearly a week. Both are settling in for the long road to recovery. Everyone remains hopeful, knowing rehabilitation will take a tremendous amount of work and effort.
It has been a great support having Judy and Dolph, Steve's oldest brother close by. Steve and Ginny also recently enjoyed their third visit since the accident from Steve's identical twin brother, Peter.
Stevie Jr. is in Tennessee while Robert and Danny are both in Texas. We will all come together in Atlanta Thursday and Friday of this week to celebrate Robert and Tiffany's wedding which is being held at the Sheperd Center.
Ginny and Steve celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary yesterday and we are all so thankful and grateful for each other. Thank you for the continued support - We are one very lucky family!
Steve arrived to Sheperd yesterday and is settling in. He traveled well with stable vitals and is gearing up for the road to recovery.
Before his departure from Jackson Memorial he did 10 leg squeezes on command which is what the doctors call a pattern. We suspect he has what is called Central Cord Syndrome because most of the movement / feeling that is returning is in the lower limbs whereas there is far less in the upper part of his body. This is most common in older patients with osteoporosis and / or stenosis. Both teams in Miami and Atlanta anticipates continued return of movement EVERYWHERE.
Sheperd provides an apartment for one family member, so Ginny is "on campus" and Steve's brother, Dolph and his wife Judy + some of their extended clan live close by.
Steve is able to control the television and a call button with a breathing mouth piece. He is going to get so technologically savvy! We are excited for the coming weeks and infinitely grateful for all the love and care we received at Jackson Memorial. Without the team at Jackson Memorial's help, Steve would not be doing as well as he is today (family included) :)
Update on Steve!!
This morning Steve and Ginny left the ICU at Miami Jackson for rehab at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta. Before leaving, they were visited by the countless nurses and doctors that have helped Steve since his injury. Their help and expertise has put Steve on the best possible path to recovery and for that the Orthwein family can never thank them enough.
Over the last few days Steve has continued to improve. While his main focus in the ICU was getting his overa...ll health stable enough for physical therapy, while there he was still able to do some work on rehab. Last night Steve did ten leg squeezes while counting them out. While the movements are small, they represent the pattern of movement and control that physical therapists look to build on. This is clearly a great sign.
Steve is in good spirits. He knows it's going to be a long journey to recovery, but is eager and determined to get working.
Thank you to all for the many words of support and well wishes. We will keep everyone updated on Steve's progress at the Shepherd Center Onward to recovery!