Tuesday, 1 July 2014

24 hours in ICU

Min Ser has made it through his first night in ICU smoothly. He has been in stable condition. A bronchoscopy was done this morning to see the condition of his lungs. Will follow up tomorrow to see how's the status. He is currently pretty much on life support, as he can't breathe on his own. A tube is inserted into his mouth and oxygen is flowed in via a tube. He will be perpetually unconscious until his condition improves. Ie: white counts come up, and fungal infection subside. His pulse has been around 127-132 bpm, it shot up to 150-160 bpm, but seems there is no cause for alarm.

White cells were collected from Sue Min today. It will be stored first, and the docs will decide when to use it. Reason why it was not done earlier is because it has not been proven to make a difference in aiding the recipients own immunity, but since Min Ser's condition is critical, they might as well try. Timing has to be right, as injecting her white cells could cause the infection in the lungs to be more inflamed, so the doctors will time it to be injected once the infection has somewhat subsided.

Yesterday afternoon was really difficult for the family as he was really having trouble breathing with pulse rate up to 192 bpm at some points. At one point he even seemed to be unaware and losing muscle function, many family members were waiting in and outside the room, as the situation was indeed very critical. 

After one hour plus of heavy struggled breathing at 180 bpm, we propped him up further and it seemed to help. He even started shouting to push him forward (muffled shout through the oxygen mask to be heard) to keep his position supported and to help support his head (as it was tiring to lift his head on his own). 

It seemed ages before his heart rate started to slow down to 160 bpm and he became much aware and alert again. He mentioned the word "worship" and we started singing songs of praise and worship to God. He asked us to continue, and then asked us to sing softer, and then after half an hour he said ok enough (everyone take a break). All via hand gestures (it is really hard to speak through the oxygen mask). 

Once aware again, family members and friends would come into his line of vision to show that they are there. He would give his thumbs up with his right hand (to show he is ok now), and with his left he will point to the heaven. He means "Trust in God" as he would do that gesture and say "Trust in God" whenever he has high fever, etc.

It was really good that his condition stabilised as that allowed the doctors to prep him for tube insertion before wheeling his bed to the ICU around 7pm. I was allowed to hold his hand as they sedated him to sleep. Once he was asleep, I left the room to allow the docs to do their thing.

Two things I was really grateful for yesterday:

1. Jo saw and interacted with Min Ser (just before his heart rate spiked). Kids below 12 are typically not allowed into the ward, but they made an exception due to his critical condition. I was carrying Jo, and she was initially reluctant to go into the ward (much less his room at the end of the corridor). I tried coaxing her, but she kept saying no. Eventually with Sue Min's help we managed to convince her to go in. When she saw Min Ser with the oxygen mask she was initially afraid and kept asking to "go outside". We gave her some time outside the room, and eventually I think curiosity overwhelmed her, and she went back into the room with some coaxing. She was even happy playing and eating a burger. She called mummy, daddy, and she touched Min Ser's finger. When it was time to go, she waved bye bye to daddy, and blew a kiss.

2. Min Ser kept fighting on. I know he is tenacious, but at the face of death, even when family members were saying their goodbyes and that's it's ok to go. He was really hanging on. And by God's grace his condition stabilised. The two things I remember him saying whenever his condition was at his toughest was, "Keep fighting on (don't give up)." and "Trust in God".


As Min Ser is now in ICU, I don't stay in the hospital anymore. I'm allowed to see him during the designated visiting hours from 12.30pm - 2pm and 4.30pm - 7pm. They are really strict. No wifey privileges :(

Whenever I'm in the room, while he is sleeping, I'll pray for him, read a few scriptures, and touch his arms. His friend brought a mp3 speaker that is playing some worship songs or the NT. I can imagine he is having some peaceful dreams while he is sleeping and hoping he is having a real good time communing with God.

That being said, lets pray for his lung infection to subside and to clear out, white cell counts (especially the neotrophils) to go up, and all other major organs (heart, liver, kidneys) to be strong and function normally. Pray for his condition to improve rapidly.


  1. Jen Ling, I'm a wife to Min Ser ex-colleague back here in Miri. You are indeed a strong woman, a true inspiration! I'm a reverted Muslim, but there's one chapter from the bible that I'll never forget. Psalm 23. I hope His word will continue to strengthen you. Don't lose hope!

  2. Our prayers and thoughts are with you. There is always hope and we are happy to hear Min Ser had a smooth night in ICU yesterday. Keep holding on and God bless.

  3. Hi Jen Ling, you are indeed a courageous & strong woman of God. May you be strengthened by Him continually through this journey.

    John 16:33 (KJV) - These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

    Though we are not able to be physically there for Min Ser, be rest assured that we as a family have been fervently praying for him since day 1.

    We have already seen so many battles won for Jesus for His glory as Min Ser's faith has arisen tremendously through this journey & through this, salvation has come to his parents. He is indeed running the race well with endurance for Jesus, looking unto Jesus, the author & finisher of his faith. Hebrews 12:1-2
    The very fact of the testimony of his great faith, his inner man being renewed day by day & his endurance in God has indeed strengthened our faith & walk with God too.

    Psalm 73: 25-28 (KJV) - 25 Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. 26 My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever. 27 For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee. 28 But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all thy works.

    Our thoughts are for Min Ser & all of you as a family as we continue to journey with him in prayer day & night just as the Lord journeys with him through this battle.
    Phil 1:6 (KJV) - Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: