After more than two months in the hospital, Aleksandr was finally strong enough to go home. Jenny says it was a meaningful moment when she could return her father’s necklace to him.
“One of the cardiologists commented on how it is a symbol of life,” she says. “My father continues to wear it.”
His care team has been cheering him on the whole way. “Our team becomes champions for our patients, and it hurts us if things are not moving in the right direction. To see Aleksandr go home is one of our proudest moments,” says Dr. Masoumi. “You see how precious this life is to everyone, and you become a part of that journey with the family. It’s priceless to see pictures of him and his grandchildren as he recovers. We’re so happy that we can form a dedicated team to help these very ill patients and bring them back to life and their families.”
Aleksandr has made a strong recovery, but he still faces some challenges and is working to regain the use of his legs. He was diagnosed with critical illness myopathy and neuropathy, which patients can develop after an extended hospital stay. “He doesn’t have the sensation or strength to move his legs,” says Jenny. He is going to physical therapy five times a week and hoping to regain strength.
As Aleksandr continues to work hard to regain his physical strength, his perseverance is already paying off. “He wanted his independence and to drive, so he did all the research and took courses in hand-control auto driving. Now, though he still cannot walk, he can drive, and that means a lot to him,” says Jenny.
After Aleksandr was discharged from the hospital, he and his wife, Faina, moved in with his daughter. Aleksandr reads to Jenny’s children, as he did with Jenny when she was young, and is teaching them to play chess. This Father’s Day, the family is moving into a bigger house that will fit everyone – Jenny; her husband, Vadim; her parents; her two sons – and her third child, due to arrive on Aleksandr’s birthday, August 26.
“It will be a memorable Father’s Day, because we are moving and have a lot to celebrate,” says Aleksandr.
Dr. Masoumi says he was touched by the love the Gartshteyns had for one another. “I have a 4-year-old daughter, and I really hope my daughter will be like Jenny and I’m loved by her the way she loves her father. They are so devoted to him, and that means he’s been an amazing father.”