Pop (my dear father in law) made a very perceptive comment. He said that we were unprepared for the level of ambiguity in the hospital process. He's a lawyer.
We did a lot of research on the valve replacement process and projected outcomes. The conventional trajectory is nothing like what we have been experiencing! By which I mean we are well into our third week in the ICU, as opposed to the single day projected.
Looking back, I think we expected her to do well (and be home by now), but we knew there was a small chance things would not go well (and we would be grieving by now). It certainly never occurred to me that we would still be wondering how things would turn out.
So how is she doing? A little better. The valve seems to be ok, so no repeat on the open heart surgery (hooray!). But her kidneys are still doing quite badly.
She's no longer sedated and her mind seems clear, but she's still on the ventilator. But she may be coming off it today. Or not. They thought she would be off it yesterday.
The general antibiotic seems to be turning back the mysterious infection, but they can't seem to track down what is actually infected.
I don't know when we will leave the fragile edge of not knowing