This morning, my brother called to say the hospital doctors had called to say that they'd be taking out the tube they put in to hook our father up to a breathing machine, and doing a tracheosomy to put in something that does the same thing, but can stay in longer. The only surprising thing there was that we hadn't thought anything would happen until tomorrow.
This evening, my brother called from the hospital to say that the old tube is out -- the technical way of putting this is that our father has been detubated. But, the tracheosomy has not been done. This means that there are no tubes going into or down our father's throat, but he is still breathing adequately, or at least was as of a couple of hours ago.
My brother said that he was even talking, though not making much sense, and put him on to say "Hi" to me, which he did.
I said, "If he starts making sense, ask him if we're on the right track about the medical instructions we gave the doctors on his behalf."
My brother said we were a long way from that, and that the hospital might put the tube in at any moment.
So, I'm not sure if our father's improving to the point where there's anything like a real chance he'll get better, or if he's just currently more stable but still might go at any time on account of multiple organ failure. This makes it tricky to say, "Okay, the long term strategy is X, and the benchmarks are as follows." Regardless, I have an appointment with a hospital social worker tomorrow. I should try to call the hospital before that so I've some idea of what the situation is. And, I want to drop by the nursing home after, to see my mother.