My oldest son Adam was a passenger in a serious motorcycle accident on the late night of 8-19-2015. He has a traumatic brain injury. This is the place for updates.
NEWEST UPDATES WILL BE ON TOP – Thank you all for your Bible verses, and your posts and comments. I read each one, they strengthen me and give me joy and comfort.
And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: and there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. Luke 18:1-5
God is a righteous judge, let’s continue to go to Him for everything <3.
Please see original post here.
I know it has been a long time since I have updated on Adam‘s condition. Quickly spoken, we are still requesting prayer for Physical, Speech and Occupational therapy. The Lord knows. But here is my main request:
Please pray for my friend who has been sacrificial with her time. Pray for her son Terry. God knows his every need. I beseech you to add him to your prayer list and ask the Lord to intervene for him in his time of crisis. That is my prayer right now, will you please make it yours?
Also, PLEASE pray for my friend Brenda who the doctors have given six months to live (and of course they don’t know the power of the Lord we serve). And for my friend from High School, Martin, who just went through open heart surgery. Appreciate you all, as I know you remember Adam, your prayers matter! In Christ, Holly and Adam.
P.S. please include the caregivers at the facility, and the ones that have sacrificially given their time: Amber, Dori, Karen, Jason, YongYi, Cheryl, David and others. Pray for their blessing for what they have done with little thanks and much opposition.
P.P.S. I also have friends who have lost a loved one to suicide, and friends who have committed suicide. One was 5 months after my husband’s death, and was my daughter’s best friend at the time. She was young and we were driving her home from church. He had killed himself tragically. Yet others who have attempted suicide and praise God, they were not successful. This world is hard, there is so much violence, anger, bitterness, hostility, rejection, sadness, sickness, death, tragedies, etc. Many suffer silently and people just do not know what they are going through until it’s too late. This is so hard on the ones who love those who attempt suicide too.
One of my FaceBook friends not too long ago took his life with a simple ‘Goodbye’ on facebook. I had known him as an acquaintance although we had crossed paths many times, I did not know what he was dealing with. That struck a chord with me as I have met others since who have suggested they might do the same, I pray I can be there for them in prayer or however the Lord may lead. I have had another just recently dealing with this very thing. Please, if you run into those who are suffering, put them on your prayer list, don’t just tell them, do it… If you can be the hands and feet of Jesus in their lives, try to do some things to encourage them from time to time. You cannot save them, but the Lord Jesus Christ can. Introduce them to Him and if they know Him already, then feed His sheep (John 21:15-17) — Wash their feet (John 13), they need the Word to revive their souls, to strengthen them.
If you are weary, go to Him, He will help. Don’t give up.
My soul clings to the dust;
Revive me according to Your word.
My soul melts from heaviness;
Strengthen me according to Your word.
Psalm 119:25, 28
For I have satiated the weary soul, and I have replenished every sorrowful soul.
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
It’s been a busy few weeks. I still have not been with Adam much. Karen, Doreen and Amber have been covering and my sons Koby and Jessup, along with Jason, my mom and Tierney. My daughter Greer and her daughter Remi (my granddaughter) came to visit Adam also this week and also last month.
We saw the doctor again and talked to him about some of the regression in his speech and cognitive ability along with drowsiness, so he was started again on Amantadine which is seeming successful, but can cause hallucinations so appreciate the prayer there.
My mom and Tierney were visiting and spent some time with him in activities, they asked him to read the headline of the newspaper (which he did) and asked him the meanings of certain words in Spanish. They did some leg and arm exercises, fed him lunch and just enjoyed their time with him. A few days later they brought down a Spanish/English dictionary when Greer came to visit.
On another cute note, a few nights back Amber was speaking to a CNA (male) who said he had a headache and she offered him some tylenol. Adam said he needed some tylenol also. Amber said she asked him where he was hurting because he hadn’t expressed any pain earlier. Adam said clearly, “My pride is hurting”. Lol, I guess he might have been a little jealous that Amber was paying someone else attention. She also has been doing aroma therapy with him and he’s been able to successfully start dividing scents within categories, i.e., spicy, floral, citrus, etc. These are all big steps, but above all we pray for and desperately need physical therapy, cognitive therapy and speech therapy. Pray for the right health care advocate.
As I went through pictures today, I reflected on the person my son has become. It’s so sad for me as a mom, in that I lost Adam that day. The Adam that was. It’s a real loss that I suffer every day, and it’s hard not to miss my boy in that way. But there is a new Adam that still reflects the old Adam and it makes my heart hurt, as he is not him — yet I love this new Adam too, even though there are so many challenges and it seems at times there is no end in sight. And there may not be. I feel for all the TBI families. The emotions that we probably can never successfully convey to others. Pray for them, they need much comfort. The Lord is good in doing that, He is near to those who have broken hearts. I love the parable of the Good Samaritan, we see that when we are broken, wounded, bleeding, bruised — others don’t even notice, but He does. He loves us, cares for us, washes our wounds, binds them up, and pays the price for us, until He comes back for us one day. Adam told me that he was ready to go. That he knows where he is going when he dies. I pray all of you who read this also know. And if you don’t, please talk to me, and know I am no one special, just a person who has sinned and does still, just like all others. Where will you go when you die?
We are struggling with care where we are at. Simple things like them making sure he gets a drink if we are not there. Or getting a doctor to return our calls. Or finding his lost glasses, or fixing his broken wheel chair, or getting his night boots fixed, or his walking boots (ordered in June) actually to come to fruition. Physical therapy has stopped again. No reason why. So we appreciate and covet your prayers for answers to these things.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
Adam is suffering a little in the cognitive areas, but we see that specific doctor on Wednesday, please pray for wisdom and the right choices for his treatment. Some of the medications that stimulate the brain also can cause hallucinations. Other medicines like anti allergy medicine can cause drowsiness, it is a constant dilemma on what is the best decision. In addition, the facility does not look like it is going to last, which may be what we need — to move. Only the Lord knows. I have recouped (mostly) from my surgery, but still lagging. Pray that if we need to move that we’ll find the right place regardless of travel time. None of these places provide the right care. I can’t really go into detail, but they have a thumb on you in that if you might have difficulty with something (i.e., no clothes even though you provided two weeks of clothing, they’ll tell you wash your own. Or if you have an issue with time to come and take care of him – say a half an hour or even up to an hour, they will tell you to find another place). This is pretty universal. There is more but I want to be respectful of Adam and his needs and not get too graphic, but it is heart rending. Thank the Lord for those who continue to faithfully help.
Pray please for my family also, for after my dad passed away, my sister’s brother-in-law who was young also suddenly passed away from a stroke. And her husband also ended up in the hospital shortly thereafter. This is part of life we all know, it doesn’t make it easier. Please pray for his widow. Also, please hold those who faithfully come to help up in your prayers. Pray for them and their loved ones.
It might seem simplistic to post this verse that many know, both believers and unbelievers. But it’s comforting.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16
For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Rom 5:6-8
Love you all, and thank you for holding us up in prayer. Adam thanks you also <3
Specific prayer requests for Adam:
- That we would see more improvement in the cognitive area. That the Lord would give us ideas to help him improve in speech and eating.
- That we might have more help with him, as I have been unable and we have lost a couple of the daytime volunteers, so one person is carrying a big load.
- That we might also see improvement in his physical abilities. He is in PT now but we still have not quite seen the improvement for walking, standing or sitting up by himself that we have been hoping and praying for.
- The facility seems really pared down in staff. They say they are not but response time is slow, so please pray for attentive workers and good timing.
- Lastly, please pray for Adam’s encouragement and that he not become less responsive, but more responsive.
- Please pray for a good friend of ours from Bible study, Ida who is in the ER as I type this. Her daughter has been a big help with Adam.
Thank you always for your prayers and encouragement <3
Seems unreal the time that has passed since the accident, a year and almost 4 months. Today is Adam’s birthday. Jason is going to drive me there and we’re going to pick up some birthday dinner for Adam and Amber (and a little cake).
It’s a bittersweet day, but I guess every day is in reality. It’s so hard to shake the great sadness that comes from a child going through difficulties. Other parents have been through the same in various ways with one or more children. Whether simple things like dealing with bad grades, to outright rebellion, boyfriends, drugs or worse. Some have even lost their child, as my mother did. All these losses are not quite something you get over.
But the Lord knows and understands, and cares about our griefs and sorrows. And as we go through this valley of the shadow of death, He is with us. Other blessings come into our lives, like new granddaughters. My first granddaughter had her first birthday yesterday, born the day before Adam. Then came a second granddaughter about seven months later. Before we came to believe on Him, we were wayward and disobedient children. Blinded in our minds by the god of this age, the enemy of our souls, who entices us with the desires of our flesh, the lust in our eyes, the pride of life in general. And this is how it has been from the beginning. We all have sinned and we fall short of God’s glory. This grieves Him as it does any parent. The Lord is the Maker of the Heavens and the Earth, and everyone that dwells on this earth belongs to Him.
The earth is the Lord‘s, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. Psalm 24:1
Whether you believe or not, there is no getting away from it. For those who don’t believe you will get part of your wish, you will have no part with God, but being separated from everything good and delivered into death and darkness forever will not be anything anyone would wish for. As parents, we don’t want to see our children suffer. He doesn’t want to see you suffer eternally, but it is your choice, to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (who He is) and what He has done for you, in order for you to be declared righteous and spend eternity with Him. Please don’t wait.
As a mom I have a ‘new’ Adam. I don’t know what kind of person he is going to become, but so far I like who he is and I pray that I will do a good job of being a mother to him. No, a better job than I did when he was first ‘coming up’. Please pray that Adam might have an enjoyable day of celebrating his birth with us. We love and appreciate you all.
Seems like the updates are fewer and farther between, for that I apologize. This has been kind of a busy month. Jason and I were married (see my Dear John letter here for more on Jason). We eloped — we were planning on waiting, but I also had an upcoming surgery that would require a lot of recoup time, and he wanted to be there for me, so we made up our minds in one day 🙂
Sadly my father had been in ICU and was just downgraded to telemetry when we left. He passed away 13 days after we were married, but it is a joyous time for him, absent from the body, present with the Lord. It was bittersweet for my children, as their dad Gilbert’s memorial service was the same date as my fathers, just seven years prior. We were able to share the gospel at my dad’s service too, although we don’t know if anyone heard, we pray so. The family grave site service was just reminiscent of a Hallmark movie with the seriously mournful taps being played. It brings cleansing tears, and I don’t think I will ever be able to make it through the first refrain without my eyes glistening.
I had my surgery, and am doing a lot of resting, but I now have people to help take care of me. Adam hasn’t had his mother for a couple of weeks, but he seems to be doing well with the friends who continue to surround him. My daughter Greer came down from Colorado with her husband and my granddaughter, and Adam was able to visit with them too. All in all, a very eventful month. I forgot to add that we also bought a house, and it needs some painting and flooring before we move. And THAT is another can of worms…
We are still asking for prayers regarding Adam’s healing, please never give up. He seems to be gaining and losing at times, but we continue to press forward.
Love in Christ — Holly, Adam, Jason and family.
I apologize for the tardiness, our family has been busy with medical emergencies, but that seems to be where we are supposed to be at the moment.
Recently, Adam was waiting for dinner and was extremely hungry. And he told me so in no uncertain terms. FEED ME, I’M HUNGRY!!
As it would happen, the dinner cart came late that night and Adam was none too happy, but as the cart rolled up, Adam got busy. I heard him talking as Tom handed me the tray. “Thank you Lord for this day and for this food”. I kind of chuckled, I thought to explain to him the importance of attitude, and then of course I was convicted of my own, and reminded how important to have our priorities in order. Adam seems to have his in the right place.
If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. Col 3:1-2
One of the days we had been reading the Bible. I try to refresh Adam each day with the gospel as we all should be prepared with it (1 Pet 3:15, Eph 6:15). I will question him after things to get him to respond back. One of the passages I was repeating in brief; we’ve all sinned, and He died and rose again to pay for my sins, and we who have believed upon Him will rise again one day to eternal life with God.
Adam responded thumbs up, “We’re good to go”!
Love in Christ to you all, thank you for your continued prayers.
Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke iseasy, and my burden is light. Matt 11:28-30
Seems unbelievable that it’s been a year since I took this video of Adam and a puppy (below). Doctors of course had told us that his movements were not ‘purposeful’ but reflex moves. Doctor Who (Hu), told us that Adam would be in a vegetative state the rest of his life. He asked if this is what we wanted for him. As if taking care of his broken body was wrong. Or maybe they felt we should donate his organs. This video was about 5 weeks after his accident. He was mostly unconscious and had been in a coma. We told Dr. Hu that Adam was tracking with his eyes, not easily, but we saw it from time to time. He felt we were in denial and left us to talk to the clean up team (the Chaplain and Social worker). I gave both of them Tom Cucuzza’s Gospel booklet here, and determined that all I could control was what I did with what the Lord had given me. I had no strength, but He let me know where to go in order to get it.
My soul melteth for heaviness: strengthen thou me according unto thy word.
I have cried lots of tears — God stored them (Ps 56:8), and one day will wipe away every one (Rev 21:4). I woke up, or I laid down — there He was, knowing even the thoughts I could not collect myself (Ps 139:1-3). Adam’s battered, bruised and scraped head was roughly shaven around the wounds. Some of his hair would be missing where the scars would form, but even then, the Lord lovingly numbers each individual hair on our head, as He does for the stars He created, even calls them by name (Ps 147:4). I was afraid, but I could trust Him (Ps 56:3). I was brokenhearted, He bound up (and is still binding up) my wounds as well as Adams (Ps 147:3). I felt alone, but He had never left me (Heb 13:5). I’d fitfully fall asleep, even then His song would be over me at night (Psalm 42:7-8), and He would have precious thoughts towards me, towards Adam, more than the sum of the sands of the ocean (Ps 139:17-18) — how can that be? Who are we that God is mindful of us (Ps 8:4)? He tells us to cast our cares upon Him because He cares for us (1 Pet 5:7). He loved us so much, He gave His life for us — where can you find greater love (Jn 15:13)? Who will separate me from the Love of Christ? No one, for God is for me, who can be against me? (Rom 8:31-39).
It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed,
because his compassions fail not.
They are new every morning:
great is thy faithfulness.
The Lord is my portion, saith my soul;
therefore will I hope in him.
Here is Adam’s video, where you can see very purposeful movement. The last time I brought in a puppy (about 2 weeks ago), Adam was doing more than pet him, he was saying how much he loved him and laughing as he did it.
Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.
Thanks to my friend Robert who nudged me to do an update. We ask for prayer for a few things. Getting something as simple as walking orthodics has been an exercise in patience. We still have been unable to find shoes that will actually fit them, and the company not much help in just insisting, find one a size larger and it will work. It has been a couple months, we’ve been limping along with one. But a friend may have given me a source to a podiatrist, and I’m going to request an appointment, pray that we will get it through if the Lord is willing and he takes Adam’s insurance.
We had X-rays done, and a chiropractor is volunteering his time to do some adjustments on Adam. He thinks he can help with his drop foot and leg and arm. So praying we can get the approval for transports.
We have been giving Adam fish oil and Astaxanthin, which helps with the absorption. Adam is coming up with some new things, no overnight miracle, but we see both improvements and at time some setbacks. We are in a difficult stage, so please pray for the renewing of his mind as we read the Word to him and do different cognitive activities along with the tremendous friends and family who help him work out daily (as physical therapy has been discontinued). Please pray for it to maybe start up again, and/or for this to be the right path for him that we are taking him on. Please pray for his friend Amber, who has been faithful to be with him nightly, she also takes him for work outs (if he is up to it) or does art activities, music, etc. Please just pray for the Lord to bless her, she is a faithful friend. Also pray for the other friends who some don’t want named, but the Lord knows who they are. Please ask the same for them. We appreciate you holding us up in prayer, we just are kind of winging it as we go, not knowing what the right choices are always, but trusting God to help us make them.
Love in Christ to you all. Holly and Adam
Yesterday was a year since Adam’s accident. I had planned on updating, but what I hadn’t planned on is where I’d be. So I spent a few days in the hospital, I don’t want to go into more detail than God is good. We never know where we might be the next day, no matter the plans we might make in life. We are not promised tomorrow.
Simply put, none of us are indestructible. If you should die tonight my dear friend (or family) or even an enemy or strange — do you know where you would go? I care, I know He does.
As I rolled past all the many people; family, nurses, doctors and patients, staff of all positions from housekeeping, to aides to technicians of all kinds — so many nice people that I met, busy and distracted, just living their lives. I was so aware of the fact that so many had no idea they were headed over a cliff into an eternity in hell, with no idea how soon it can be — separated forever from anything good they have ever known, living as if they’ll never die.
We will all die. And then the Bible says after that the judgment. How will you be judged? Guilty or innocent? There is no in-between, no scale of good or bad, no amount of works can reach a perfect, good and Holy God. No matter how you have been convinced you have to do ‘something’ for the free gift of eternal life, it is only the work of Jesus on the cross that can pay for the fact that we have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. That sin cost us eternal life with Him. But Jesus came and paid the debt for our sins on the cross. It has been satisfied with God. What must you do?
Jesus was not a man that He should lie and He said He was the way the truth and the life. He loved us so much, that He gave His life for ours. He said He gave His life willingly (greater love hath no man…) and since Jesus is God, He had the power to take His life back up again. He gave His life for you. Don’t wait. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved. Much love to you all.
This was often my view each night, when I’d come out of the second hospital Adam was in (Barrows) and third facility by then. Long hallways to leave, one last long hallway after each day trudging in, trudging out. You get pretty drained physically and emotionally, (but others here know the feeling, either through helping with Adam, or going through their own situation.)
This was what I saw as I walked out onto the rooftop parking. It frequently had more spaces open because people didn’t want to come out into the heat. With me coming out at night it worked perfectly. I would come out into the open, with a panorama of the city lights, the big buildings cutting that view — and it reminded me of the contrast between me as a believer and the world, and what Jesus told us in advance for our comfort, this is why I did this Bible verse picture with it. Here are a few others (Rom. 15:4; Rom. 8:31-39,2 Cor. 4:7-18).
Tomorrow Adam has a followup physical with Dr. Vickroy at Valley Physical (physical and neuro rehab). I was called around an hour ago, he fell backwards off the commode and hit his head on the wall. He seems to be o.k., pray for him in that regard please.
He is also having a lot of trouble with someone in the hallway who plays their t.v. loudly. So loudly at night it wakes him if he has fallen asleep. Since he is brain trauma, that cannot be day and night noise. Daytime when we are there and even evening, we can regulate by shutting Adams door, but when we are not there, the door needs to remain open. She is physically unable to shut her own door, but refuses to let others shut it. She also refuses to turn the volume down. Adam is not the only one, there is another gentleman with a brain injury also affected, both in first beds so they can be seen by staff. So it is very difficult for Adam to get better if he cannot sleep. Amber addressed it again last night with the staff, they said they would shut the door of the other patient, who threatened to call the police if they did. Please pray somehow they might get resolved in a peaceable way for Adam’s sake and also so we don’t bring any shame to Christ by our own behavior (guilty of this myself).
Most of you know they discontinued Physical therapy with Adam and he was regressing, but we are trying to make up for it ourselves by taking him to the PT room twice a day and it seems to be working, and his spirits are up. Thank you for your prayers for that.
Please pray also for so many down there that don’t know how close they are to death. I think we just kind of walk through life feeling invincible, not realizing we are not promised tomorrow. It is appointed to man once to die THEN the judgment. How close so many are to living eternity without Him. Frightening, tragic, sickening to think of any of my friends being in a place where there is nothing but torment, sorrow, nothing good because they’ve never believed on Jesus Christ alone. I cannot even imagine a day without Him now, but so many trust in their religion, in their upbringing, in their church attendance (or the particular church they attend) or their own goodness. Jesus said we need to change our thinking about that, there is only One Way to the Father, and He is that way, the truth and the life, and no man shall come to the Father but by Him. Please pray for eyes to be opened to see how simple it is to be saved and to listen as we get various opportunities to share the good news with others. In Christ’s love and peace to you all, Holly and Adam
Do you know what you must do to be saved? To enter heaven vs. hell?
Would you like to be sure?
Soon hopefully we’ll know the results of both Adam’s and Koby’s MRI’s. Today however was a day that the Lord showed me and a motorcyclist much grace and mercy. I was driving down to see Adam. I saw the biker coming up fairly fast, although he was still quite a bit behind me, I decided to change lanes and put my signal on. I thank the Lovingkind Lord that I have a habit of easing over vs. whipping my large Tahoe into the next lane. As I was easing over, the motorcyclist whipped and swerved right around my back bumper, and I saw him and went back into the left lane immediately, or he would have been thrown and I know it would have been horrific. He (like Adam) was without a helmet although he did not have a passenger. I couldn’t help but shed tears as immediately my heart jumped and also sunk, yet I was somehow able to avert this tragedy my mind already processed somewhat. I wanted so badly to talk to that guy about what he was doing but of course, there is no way to catch up to them. I prayed for him but really tried to contain my tears (still am) at the near horror of something like that almost happening, except by God’s intervention (of that I feel sure and am so thankful).
PLEASE: If you are a motorcycle rider — please consider a helmet if you don’t plan to stop riding. Also please don’t whip in and out of traffic without considering what might happen if a car changes lanes. It’s not just your life you are taking into your hands. This biker was completely in the wrong today, but would it have mattered if he lost his life right or wrong? Would it matter that he was at fault if I had to live with the horror of either sending him flying into cars (who would run him over), or running him over myself? May the Lord help some see. Motorcycle riders (especially helmet-less) are referred to by many in the ER rooms and ICU’s as ‘organ donors’. You also affect the lives of those you love, and even spoke to a gentleman the other night whose wife was an ER and ICU nurse, and night after night there were motorcycle accidents and she couldn’t take the sorrow any more and went into administration. What you do affects others, not only you. So if not for yourself, do it for those you say you love.
In Christ, Holly and Adam
It’s been a long week. I must say that praying more in advance of things has sure helped my decisions and also even the ease of how things have happened. We did go to the primary for Koby in order to get a referral to a hand/wrist orthopodedic surgeon. They had to take off his splint in order to x-ray him clearly. It seemed their machines weren’t able to see through the material. The doctor told me it looked like it could also be dislocated and was confused as to why the other doctor in the hospital would not have put pins in it right away. Might be the Lord just working it out in the right timing, the other doctor was out of network, who knows what it may have cost.
I asked the doctor how long this could wait, and he said it should not wait long, and if it was his child he’d want an MRI. I told him to order one, and we got the paperwork and left. I decided to call in the parking lot for the MRI appointment and was told he could not be seen for a week, because of his insurance needed pre-auth. I said a silent prayer, told the woman it could not wait, and asked what we could do. She said I’d need a STAT order to override the pre-auth, so I walked back into the office and told them the doctor hadn’t ordered it STAT. We got that straightened out and they faxed the order over and we made an appointment for the next day. Thank You Lord for caring for the seemingly small details.
We went to his MRI and they said they’d have the orders back to the doctor that day. I made sure I followed up with both, and of course they hadn’t. So by the end of the day right before close the films arrived and we have an appointment set for Monday. We don’t know what else will happen, but we take it a day at a time. It was nice (NOT), to arrive home to a DMV note because of my other son’s insurance lapse. Accompanied by a jury duty notice for failure to appear (because of them not accepting or receiving my doctor’s excuse note), along with a notice of time to fill out the guardianship papers. Topped off by some tax forms and payment to fill out for corporation minutes — where is a secretary when I need one? 🙂 Fighting high and low blood sugar, and so trying to control by type of foods eaten (very low carb), but will need to get that taken care of soon, appreciate prayers for that.
Adam is doing well, he had his MRI and it was hard for him to settle down, but they accomplished what they needed to do. He left the facility at about 10:15 and didn’t arrive back there until about 4 pm. He was starving having not eaten since the night before, so he was able to be coaxed to use his left hand to reach for pieces of a rare fast food burger which was brought to him with a small order of fries. He coaxed the offered treat along with “Hurry up, I’m hungry”…
We still have some issues with the orthotics, we were supposed to receive a walking and a resting pair and have only received one, so appreciate continued prayers there.
We also have kind of some ongoing issues between facility and caregivers with keeping up the quality of care and cleanliness — will leave it at that for now, although keeping notes for my records. I just ask for prayer that in spite of either side’s weaknesses, that it will all work together for good for Adam, but also that we can be in a prayerful attitude, showing gentleness and kindness without sacrificing Adam’s care at the same time — a hard balance to strike as we all love Adam.
Adam has continued with the family/caregivers/friends in the things we are doing to try to improve brain and body function. We are using fish oil and inhaling essential oils (Frankincense, Myrrh, Cedarwood and clove bud), along with using some others with massage or for sleep. We are working out twice a day for about 30 or so minutes. We do the pedaling, range of motion and hand/arm exercises during the day (along with the Bible reading and some cognitive exercises), and Amber usually does the elliptical at night along with music/arts and language or writing/drawing. Supposedly the facility (restorative nursing) is taking Adam three times a week to the short parallel bars — we just have never seen it, so please pray that is really going on. They also have really the most bare essentials (regarding equipment). The walking area is only a few feet (with parallel bars), not something that can begin to meet his needs in terms of even understanding walking. So we wait on the Lord as we strengthen his legs and pray that everything will come in His timing and with His help, and that we’ll continue to be directed on what is the next step to take.
This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope.
It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.
They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.
The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.
It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.
So we will hope and quietly wait for our merciful, compassionate and faithful Lord to deliver us (however He wills) from these present trials. In the meantime, prayerfully we will be rejoicing (as we should) through them.
On a sad note: Our friend Joe lost his son yesterday, only 14, to a TBI which occurred as the result of some blood clots (from a blow) to form in his brain, they were dealing with that for awhile when he went back into the hospital, for clot busters for his brain. The hospital somehow missed that his brain had begun to bleed and this went on 11 hours, and he suffered a Traumatic brain injury and was in a coma. His father texted me yesterday to let me know his son had passed (I am not naming him). I cannot imagine this tremendous loss for this family, please pray for the Lord’s mercy and comfort for the entire family.
In Christ’s love to you all, Holly and Adam
Yesterday afternoon ended with a bang — literally. I was with Adam when my mom and Tierney showed up. We visited for a bit and I got an emergency call that my youngest had fallen and I needed to come home. He was riding his hoverboard (the non-recalled one for those who will ask), and it stopped midstream and he fell backwards onto his wrist. Fortunately my mom and Tierney were there, and they stayed with Adam and I went across town to meet Koby at the ER. He fractured his wrist in several places, and it needed reset. After some deliberation we opted to try for not putting him under, as they felt they could reset it quickly and get it cast/splinted (gives room for the swelling until a more permanent solution). It did work the first time, and Koby was very good although we could tell it was very painful for him. A follow up X-ray showed it had slipped and needed to be reset once again, but this time by a specialist. I had noticed that when they set it, they didn’t have the inside of the wrist supported and wondered about that, so found it interesting later when the hand orthopaedist came and gave him a three-point splint. They did IV sedation and he woke several times during the process, but I was able to settle him down (legs in the air) as they proceeded to reset his wrist. Home around 9:30-10 last night.
This morning began the calls and emails, there must have been fifty up until about 3:30 (a few minutes ago). The specialist told me to call first thing. They don’t take our insurance. Called our insurance, I was referred to website which didn’t work. Began to call all hand Orthopaedic specialists to see if they would take my insurance. Monday is a busy day, got through to some, others I had to continue to call. Emailed my insurance and made calls, this continued for hours to find I needed a primary referral. After three calls that appointment got made for tomorrow afternoon. Re-called the original specialist as he was pretty insistent he needed to get a specialty cast on this in 2-3 days because of the type of fracture. Asked the girl in the office if she could ask him if he thought it will wait out the referral process or could I pay him to have him do it. She said no to both, and that I’d have to call the hospital to get them to tell me what to do. You all have guessed by now I’m sure where that went. So appreciate the prayers for the open end we are facing, we do have the splint on, but he is growing and we are keeping still, but so much going on this week I could not begin to fill in about school starting today and Koby’s enrollment not found anywhere. Forms and questions and emails and such — But this is about Adam, so let me update you there.
An empathetic advocate has gotten approval for us to continue to use the PT facilities for the pedaler and the elliptical machine. Adam’s spirits seem to be much better when he is getting this exercise and it’s encouraging to us all, so thank you for supporting us in prayer.
On another good note, the MRI is supposedly RIGHT this time, and he will be seen in two days. Please pray for that too. We were wondering how I was going to juggle these hours with Adam and Koby regarding doctors this week but I think we have it worked out.
My mom (in the visit yesterday) said she was surprised at the progress Adam has made since the last time she was there. (A few weeks back). She said he put numbers in the phone and left my oldest daughter a message. She said the nurse came and was shocked to see him with the phone. She also watched me read from Psalms to him and asked him questions, along with some cognitive exercises with antonyms and definitions for them. She wrote she was very surprised at his answers to so many meanings for words. She said she had to think for the answers 🙂
We are hoping soon for the answers to implant dentistry for Adam. Even though the teeth were knocked out in the accident, the other people did not have insurance for the motorcycle, so his health insurance does not pay for that. Beyond the funds, there is the logistics of getting someone to see him or vice versa since insurance doesn’t pay, I don’t know about transport. But I think he will be able to swallow, chew, and speak more clearly if we can get that resolved. Obviously it cannot be a bridge and needs to be something more permanent, but again, he would probably need to be under anesthesia. So looking forward to new things, appreciating you keeping us in prayer for walking and talking (teeth) 🙂
Thank you all again, in Christ, Holly, Adam and family.
We need prayer…We are disheartened. I am fighting health issues, and the snail like process of getting anything done, let alone right, is very trying. We have been waiting for an MRI for almost 2 months. It was weeks before it was scheduled. Once it was, the first time he was sent without any sedation orders, given his condition his facility physician should have known this. I told them he wanted anesthesia. The hospital said write it up MRI with anesthesia protocol. The second time he was almost sent again without the proper orders, it had to be canceled. This third visit, the hospital called to cancel his Monday visit. Improperly written orders. I wanted to cry. I wrote this out for the doctor more than once, and explained it has to be written that exact way. All he has to write is really only three words…
MRI with anesthesia…
But again he wrote sedation or IV sedation. Frustrated… They won’t accept that. I rescheduled for a fourth visit. Please pray that will FINALLY go through correctly.
Not only that, they discontinued Physical Therapy. We thought we would be getting some PT and some range of motion, via the restorative nursing team. But only one person has been coming and he says it cannot be him. That the only other one (an older gentleman will take him in the morning). And that we cannot take him to the gym either. We have been taking him in his wheelchair and letting him use a pedal bike (sits right in his chair) and the elliptical machine, right from his chair. They said family cannot take him, even though those exercises do not pose any danger to him, nor keep anyone else from using the machines, (we only go when no one is there). Adam has been happy, saying he has a ‘blast’ at the gym, and now we are told it cannot happen any longer, we all want to weep at how ludicrous this system is, the roadblocks they put in your way. But I have not given up and am not going away quietly. I will again contact either the state legislature or an ombudsman or both. I am needing to have a couple procedures done, so will have to wait it out.
The orthotics were promised to be delivered today, (late by weeks and weeks) and now delay again. They won’t give the therapy and don’t want us to either. Please pray for wisdom and for strength to deal with this while I am dealing with some other issues of my own that I need to get through. Pray for some compassion and understanding in this and a way around it. Love you all in Him, thank you.
1 The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
3 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
It has been an eventful couple of weeks. Adam was fitted for orthotics yesterday (finally). They submitted the paperwork in the beginning of June, but I was getting nowhere fast with getting things done. This week I made a lot of calls and emails to insurance and the Orthotics company, and they finally came out yesterday. Prayerfully they will help Adam stand better. They discontinued Adam’s therapy saying he is not progressing. I am not fighting it for the moment, just allowing this all to get settled to see where to go from here. He IS progressing for those of you following him. Just maybe not according to their goals, or insurance goals, not quite sure, but we all see it. It is slow to be sure, and takes a lot of effort on our parts, but change is happening all the time.
God created a miraculous body, and it is something to see how it works. But we are all dying, and I am sure Adam has heard and believed the good news that Jesus Christ is Lord (God the Messiah/Savior), and that He has died for his sins (the penalty for sin is death-Rom 6:23, and we all have sinned, each and every one of us). Heb 9:27 tells us it is appointed to each of us to die, THEN the judgment. Not purgatory, not reincarnation, not a chance to be born back into the world. We will be judged by whether we have believed on His Son or whether we have not (John 3:36). All our sins were all paid for at the cross (Col. 2:13-15). The sins we have done, and the ones we are currently doing, as well as the ones we don’t even know we will commit. When Jesus died for OUR sins (being perfect, never having committed a sin), He was buried and rose again from the dead (as He said He would in John 10:17-18), proving He is God and has the power to take His life back up again.
God loved the world so much that He sent His only begotten Son for this purpose (John 3:16). Jesus died with great love for you and He did it willingly (John 15:13, 10:17-18). There is only ONE WAY to heaven, do you know what it is?
- Trying to be a good person?
- Going to church as much as possible?
- Belonging to the one religion or one church you believe to be true?
- Following the Golden Rule?
- All paths lead to heaven?
- Fill in your own ____________________?
Jesus said in John 14:6, that HE was the Way. That HE was the Truth. That HE was the Life. That NO ONE would come to the Father, but by Him. He was either who He said He was, or He was a man who led many to their deaths. But I believe He is who He said He was. I pray you might too if you haven’t already.
He made a way for each man, woman and child to be saved from the penalty of our sins –eternal death/separation from God. This way is Free, and it is Forever, you cannot lose it or forfeit your salvation. Romans 6:23 explains eternal life is a FREE GIFT. So how does one receive this gift of everlasting life?
In Acts 16, there is the recounting of the time that Paul and Silas were in jail at midnight, singing songs of praise to God, and a great earthquake happened. The people had seen many miracles at the hands of the apostles in the name of Jesus Christ. The Jailer was entrusted by the Roman authorities to keep these men safely, and when he was awoken and saw the jail opened, he drew his sword to take his own life, figuring they had escaped (and likely an easier death than what he would suffer at the hands of those who wanted to stop the apostles). Paul called out from the dark to save the man from killing himself. He let them know they were all there. And then the jailer asked them what he must do to be saved. And it is the same as you must do) “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved”.
Look around at the world, the love of many growing cold, the perilous times we live in. The terrorist acts, the hatred of one person to another, the rage, the senseless killings… Life is short, do you know where you will go if you die? Believe it’s all a fairytale? Look into it, it’s not worth an eternity separated from God who created all good things, and only gives good gifts to us.
Love to you all <3
If you would like to know more, please click this link for a free booklet.
If you would like to watch a video, please check this one my friend Pastor Ralph (Yankee) Arnold.
I apologize to you all for the delay in updating. Sometimes our life seems to get so busy we can’t seem to catch a breath. We had another addition in the family on July 3rd. A granddaughter, Tenley Adaira, came into this world a whopping 9 lbs. 7 oz. Head full of hair and chubby cheeks, we are thankful all went well, and she is healthy and my daughter and her husband are home with their new little one. And I’ll be seeing my other granddaughter tomorrow, so it should be a busy couple of days.
Adam had botox shots in his legs yesterday. We are hoping this will enable the muscles in the leg to relax so he will be better able to put his feet flat on the ground. Please pray for those things as well as his orthotics to finally arrive. This should also help. We’ve waited quite a long time for them. It does look like Physical and Speech/Cognitive Therapy has decided that he is not progressing at the moment, so it may be only a week more of therapy. At that time they will continue with restorative nursing, and I’ll continue with standing him, and stretching and other games we’ve been playing for stretching and dexterity including some childhood games with songs. It kind of surprises me that the cognitive/speech therapy is being dc’ed, Adam is growing there by leaps and bounds, but the family and friends will continue with our own therapy. The Lord will help us as He has all along. We really do need the prayer for strength and guidance in all matters, and we appreciate them very much.
Tuesdays are my typical day off, but it was catch up day for home matters, doctors (called two different offices, his dialysis doctor and his aneurysm doc). I spoke to two nurses, one receptionist, the front desk (twice) of my dad’s facility, the nurses station, and the administrator of his facility. Online RX shopping for prices along with compiling a letter for my mom regarding some RX issues and VA stuff. Then a very late brunch. An hour later some appointments, and finally a late dinner.
Here is the best part of yesterday, )besides getting things accomplished). On an appointment, I met a man whose 14 year old son had some clotting issues, they over-dosed him on blood thinners and he had a brain bleed for 11 hours undetected in the very hospital administering the thinners. He has a TBI. It has been two weeks and basically is not really conscious and not speaking. Because we had quite a long drive, I was able to talk to him quite a bit, and offer him some hope. These families are drowning in sorrow as they attempt to support their loved ones. Pray for them please, and pray that I can be a support when they need it. That also the Lord would send others for them to help lighten their load in more ways than one. Joe is the father, Mike is his son…
Please also pray for Alex*, who has joined one of our friends when she reads the Bible to Adam in the waiting room. Alex* said he did not ever own a Bible, he is a Native American who grew up in Southern Arizona. I gave him Adam’s Bible, and officially met his ‘partner’ John* who I see all the time, who is helpful in pushing other patient’s wheel chairs to and from activities. They also graciously received Pastor Tom Cucuzza’s booklet on how to be sure you are going to heaven. Susie* is another patient, who today asked for a large print Bible. I’ve gotten one ordered for her. Pray for the continued harvest for these laborers who read, who are kind, helpful and generous to patients who otherwise don’t really see much in the way of visitors.
*The names are fictional in order to protect their right to privacy.
In an update to the 13th, I spent time with Adam explaining to him who our president was. I was watching Wheel of Fortune with him in curiosity, wondering if he could see the letters and thought to ask him if he knew who the host of the show was. (Earlier in the day I had asked him who a charge nurse was who he rarely sees. He instantly said “Cecil”, which is very close to his name. I followed up with asking what Cecil did, and Adam answered that he was a nurse. We also had some great Q & A that day). So returning to the Wheel of Fortune show, he instantly responded that Pat Sajak was the host and with great clarity. I asked him who was standing by the letters. His correct answer was immediately Vanna White. So I thought that NOW would be the time to go over the Presidency. I said, “Adam, it is very important to this speech therapist/pathologist that you start learning these current events. Do you know our president is now Obama?”
“Do you know how to spell Obama?” (Trying to use his name repetitively in each sentence).
“Actually Obama only has one M, it is spelled O-B-A-M-A, Obama. Can you remember now our president is Obama?”
“Who is our president Adam”?
(O.k., I laughed out loud). “Adam, you weren’t even alive when Truman was our president. OBAMA is our president. Now tell me again who our president is?”
“MR. Harrison” (heavy emphasis on the Mister).
“Adam… Obama is NOW our president. Who is our president?”
Laughingly I explained softly, “Now Adam, Herb was the Mayor of Scottsdale, our Mayor. Did you know he has passed away?”
“O.K. Let’s try this another way right now. Obama is our president, and he is married. Do you know his wife’s name by chance?”
“Are you sure you do?”
“O.K., then who is President Barack Obama’s wife? What is her name?”
“Cicely Tyson”. (At this point I admit, I kind of lost it in laughter, collapsed back unto his bed in tears and he also began to laugh. I have no idea if he was having fun with me, I believe so, because his short term memory loss is just not that short, and he is always able to repeat things just said to him. So after regaining my composure, I suggested we try to remember the therapist’s name (to impress her I confess). “Adam, your Speech Pathologist’s name is Pam Cherry, Cherry, just like the fruit, can you remember that?”
“Yes, Pam Cherry”.
“Who is your Speech Therapist?”
“VERY GOOD Adam”. Amber walked into the room at that moment, so I gestured towards her and changed gears; “Adam, who just came in the room?”
“Pam Cherry”. We both laughed and Amber teased, “Are you just being silly?” I asked him again, “who is that?” (pointing to Amber).
“Pam Cherry” (accompanied by his grin and our giggles).
“Who am I?” (Getting up close to his face).
“Pam Cherry”. Much more laughter.
“Who is the President?”
“Pam Cherry”. (Hysterical laughter, followed up by my suggestion to Adam to be sure he told the therapist EXACTLY that when she asked him who the president was). 🙂
Thank you all for your prayers, and taking the time out of your day to keep up with us.
As the Word encourages, keep praying, don’t faint. I need prayer regarding Adam’s cognitive therapy, ordered by Dr. Kwasnica’s PA, Dr. Vickroy. Evidently this new speech pathologist doesn’t seem to feel he can do this therapy, evidenced by her lack of confidence in his ability and wanted to place the blame of his lack of cooperation with her on his ‘brain damage’.
Please pray for my patience, I was also told that ‘seizure behavior’ was reported by her supposedly, and so I have been on multiple calls this morning. It seems to be an ongoing frustration with a difficulty in people understanding the immense amounts of things I have to do already. The doctors visits that I not only have to arrange, but attend and coordinate with the other doctors to be sure they have current info (never happens). The prescriptions that I have to follow and monitor side effects, the arguments I get from different staff members regarding the potential issues of timing on dosing. The amount of research, support groups, and just doing my best in trying to keep record of any changes. Sometimes it seems like people don’t want to cooperate, they just seem to misunderstand simple questions and make four times the work out of something that should be so much easier in these difficult times. The therapies I have to keep going require working on the same things they are in order for them to see progress, such as range of motion, standing him and walking him are extremely physically tiring tasks. The notes I have to keep, the medical records, the expenditures, the schedules, the forms I have to fill out for not only social security, but for guardianship (never mind the phone waits). The medical paperwork for his insurance is never self explanatory, it takes a few phone calls and emails, and as one person noted, they seem to have perfected the art of being as vague as possible. Add on top of that, having to explain things to other people, and just trying to manage, sometimes it’s a ‘Calgon take me away day’, except I really do not have the time or inclination for a long soak. The rewards still come, even though the stress and frustration can be high, just due to the sheer volume of things I am responsible for, so prayer is greatly appreciated. I can vent to you all, but it only scratches the surface. I could talk to some, but they really can’t understand, nor could I understand what they are walking through. I am responsible for so many, and feel like I sure miss the mark in even honoring my father and mother enough, just because I am so fatigued. Mostly I am in very good moods, the last few days have been challenging. Even Adam’s MRI came on the wrong day and the doctor hadn’t ordered any sedation at all, especially sedation appropriate for someone with a TBI. They want him completely under, and he wasn’t sedated at all, so that was a wasted trip.
Adam’s second roommate also checked out under duress, said he was unhappy with the treatment, and felt his foot needed looked at by the ER (in truth, so did I, it was inflamed, red, and hot to the touch, as well as an extreme amount of edema), but that was not for me to say. But he left without a word one night, say a prayer for John, he almost lost this leg once, and already has had the big toe amputated on it. His previous roommate we were concerned was rushed out too soon, and he has texted to let us know he ended up back in the hospital a few days later. This is the state of our health care I am afraid, although much better than many countries, still very hard on those unable to fend for themselves.
Pray for my patience in the continued responsibility I have, and my wisdom in making choices which rest fully on me, no matter how others may care. The sadness I feel as I have lost a child, and will never see that exact child again, but am fighting for the life of this new one, and seems like and endless struggle against stubbornness of some, pride of others, condescension and patronization of those who are ‘taking care of him’ while at the same time declaring him a foregone conclusion, a TBI statistic, –‘brain damaged’. Even his vision impairment was a reason for this speech pathologist to say this was going to make him almost impossible for him to learn. When I shared some things I had tried, i.e., using a word processor and enlarging the font, until he could read the lyrics of a song and having him sing to that, her comment was basically they didn’t have those resources here (seems she may not have heard of a simple computer) 🙂
It seemed to upset her that he couldn’t remember his age, and greatly upset her that he still thought Bush was president, and that he ‘didn’t even know Obama was OUR president’. The reason I say ‘greatly’ is that she repeated herself regarding Obama, and the tone of voice seemed to be very displeased or dismayed (I know I don’t know her heart, just sharing what it seemed like). But for that reason, I believe it was wise for me to refrain from saying that I had forgotten he was also 🙂 And that sometimes I also think I am 19…
Thank you for continuing to pray for us. We need it always.
Over the weekend I was playing soft music for Adam. An old song by the Imperials came up. He told me a couple different times this week that he loved this particular song (“I love it!”). He also told me it was ‘awesome’ and his ‘favorite song’. He was napping, (or so I thought) when the song came on, and during the chorus, Adam broke out singing “Praise the Lord” (from his bed with closed eyes). The next day I wanted to show our friend Doreen, and put the song on. Adam again began singing “praise the Lord” with his head swaying back and forth in time to the music. His facial expression revealed so much that Dori and I both began shedding quiet tears as he sang on. He sang to a Selah song, only certain portions — “All my Tears be washed away”, and “Come and drink, and thirst no more”. Casting crowns was up next and Adam would chime in at certain areas (ones he has memorized); “I know you’ve cast my sins as far as the East is from the West” and “in Your arms of mercy I find rest”, or “You’re holding on to me”. It seemed to be an appropriate finish to our karaoke time 🙂
The three of us were sitting in the lobby later, when I saw a visitor walk in the front door. Chris’s wife Cristina came bearing gifts. She had a chocolate shake for Adam (which he consumed in no time), in between sips, he again wagged his finger at me when I didn’t bring it back to his lips fast enough. I reminded him to use his words not his crooked finger 🙂
She also brought beautiful, lovingly-hand-crafted winter caps. What a special gift, those who know me well, know how much I love handmade items, especially when someone I love makes it. This is the second such gift recently from one showing their love for me, which in turn reminds me of God’s love and care for us.
She remembered my favorite colors — teal and purple (she asked me back in the days of ICU). She didn’t have teal yarn, but crocheted one in purple for me, and another smaller one in a different design for my granddaughter Remi. Adam’s hat came in varying shades of straight channels of gray and white. I love them, and you can see why!
It was so good to see and talk with her, pray with her, get to put my arm around her. She has been through so much. She spoke with Adam for a while and showed us some pictures her two little ones, 4 and 14 months now. She then showed us pictures of Chris and Adam looked and said, “He was so nice”. What an unreal miracle, it was quite an awesome difference from the days of the trauma hospital. Last I saw him, his head was shaven and he was unconscious laying there in the ICU bed. And here was a handsome young man standing tall and erect with a full head of hair. The very one that they also didn’t think would live or if he did, they said he would not come out of it other than in a vegetative state. I worry for the parents who are told these things so that parents will give their organs to another. Cristina shared with me that they told her this even earlier than they had told me similar things about Adam. She asked if I’d like to talk to Chris, and surprisingly she put him on the speaker phone. His voice was strong — just wonderful to hear him for the first time. It was ‘awesome’ (to coin Adam’s recent favorite term) to hear Chris speak so clearly. I know so many of you have been faithfully praying for him as well as Adam.
The four of us (Cristina, Adam, Doreen and myself) joined hands to pray. Adam began praying, thanking God for a lot of things in a row. He had me smiling, it went on and on. But then maybe that is just what we should be doing. Then I finished the prayer, I don’t really remember much of what I said, except I thanked Him for the great love He showed for us when He died for us on the cross, was buried as the Scriptures had foretold, then rose again, proving He was God. Jesus said He laid down His life willingly, no one took it from Him, and He had the power to take it up again. He rose from the dead proving those of us who have believed on Him will also rise from the dead again to eternal life with Him. After we finished, Adam offered, “that prayer was just wonderful…it was wonderful”. I told him that his prayer was the wonderful one because he had remembered to thank God for all the things He has done for us.
Firstly, please remember others who are in these chains of brain injuries. It is very hard to recover from the physical, let alone the other trauma they have suffered. So many hurting in these Skilled Nursing Facilities, from young to old. Struggling in the bondage of their injured mind and bodies. Please, keep them in your prayers. Pray for those who don’t know Him that one day they may be set free from this body of death and be found present with their Lord. Today after PT Adam asked for music. I started at the beginning of my list, and the first one Adam said, I love the sound of that. He said a few words, and then said, That is really amazing. And he is so restful right now as he listens to this:
There will be a day with no more tears,
No more pain, and no more fears
There will be a day when the burdens of this place
Will be no more, we’ll see Jesus face to face
There will be a day with no more tears,
No more pain, and no more fears
There will be a day when the burdens of this place
Will be no more, we’ll see Jesus face to face
He will wipe away the tears [3x]
There will be a day
It’s true. There will be a day, that those of us who have believed upon Him for the free gift of eternal life, that Jesus Himself will wipe away our tears, no more sorrow, no more pain.
Adam had a visitor on Sunday. He actually had 3, but was most interested in the little one.
My niece brought in her baby son Ryder. He is the most affable baby I’ve seen in a long time, not showing a complaint for anything, and I’m not sure you’d catch it if he did. He is solid muscle, I felt like I was weight lifting to hold that little guy. But no effort to coach a smile or screech from Ryder. Adam was grinning ear to ear. He started gesturing with his hands, reaching towards the baby and demanding, “Give him to me, I want him.” He repeated this several times and Carla said she’d hold him on Adam’s lap. The biggest concern was the sheer weight and strength of this little Bamm-Bamm, we didn’t want him slipping out of Adam’s arms. Ryder looked up at Adam and Adam grinned, very attentive little guy. I asked Adam if he wanted to sing “Jesus loves me” to Ryder, I didn’t even have time to turn on the video until the middle, as he broke right out in song:
Jesus loves me this I know
For the Bible tells me so
Little ones to Him belong
They are weak but He is strong.
Yes, Jesus loves me.
Yes, Jesus loves me.
Yes, Jesus loves me, the Bible tells me so…
This is the song I sang to Adam when he was in ICU at Scottsdale Osborn. They said he was non responsive and by all accounts I imagine that is what it appeared to be. When I was singing the song, Adam squeezed my hand, something no one could get him to do. It choked me up. Still does.
The next day, Adam said to me, “I just love that Walker, he is so adorable”. I quizzed him, “Who”?
Then it dawned on me he meant Ryder, so I asked, “did you mean to say Ryder?”
“Yes, Ryder”. It was another precious moment in time.
Jesus loves the little children…
Please see the update below, but wanted to add a couple things from today. The CNA and I had Adam walking from the bathroom door to the dresser with the walker and our help. We did it four times. It wasn’t easy but he was happy.
After dinner we went to go outside. When we walked through the lobby, there were six darling little kids, one little boy around 7-8 years that I’ve talked to before. Then five little girls which appeared to be maybe 5-6 down to about 3. They were cousins and siblings, the children of a brother and sister sitting there trying to keep them quiet. They were shy at first, but I spoke to them and asked question and they just swarmed us like cute little buzzy bees. I was asking questions and they started competing for my attention. I told Adam to tell them hello. I don’t know how I got them singing, I think it was because one little one had twinkle twinkle little star on her shirt. (Of course they then all showed me their shoes and shirts and hair things 🙂 They sang for me and I sang the ABC’s back with them. I was warmed to see Adam joined in singing loudly too.
In between songs, one little wee one pulled on my shirt and with her chubby little hands gestured for me to lean down. She wanted to feel my hair. Her little brown fingers ran through my long blond hair as she grasped it and looked at the color in seeming wonderment. I touched her little soft curly brown hair fastened with a bunch of rubber banded short pigtails sticking up every which way. Just so much cuter than a bug in a rug. Her grandma seemed embarrassed, and said something in apology which I didn’t quite catch, but I assured her that it was perfectly o.k. This little adorable girl (I wanted so badly to hug) was fascinated by our different looks. I was in turn captured by her little upturned innocent smiling face with the running nose, and deeply touched by this thing — (not knowing what to call it) that was happening with these precious little ones. I imagine how Jesus must have felt as the little children swarmed all over Him, in love with His pure goodness, and He in love with them. I had a tiny blissful glimpse of what that must have felt like.
After a bit, I could feel their pent up energy and asked the parents if they could come out with us. (The window and doors are glass and we would sit at the table right there where we could be watched only feet away). They said it was o.k., and they all ran out gleefully, jumping up and down, singing, dancing — happy to be set free. And one of the littlest ones (which I ‘believe’ were twins) came out, but ran back in before the door shut, crying in fear of being separated from her momma. About a minute later curiosity brought her right back out likely not wanting to miss anything.
They then decided to dazzle me with a ring-around-the-rosy singing circle, then the ringleader demanded that I listen to her tell a Bible story. I said, “Yay, I would love one”. So the little one directed me to turn her chair towards me, (I complied obediently) and in mimicking form of a preacher she must have heard, she was saying in a sing song voice, “Glory, Hallelujah, Miracles happen”, etc. with the appropriate hand gestures. I teased her, “What kind of a story is that? Where is the beginning, the end? For that matter where is the middle? Maybe I should tell you a story”. She sternly replied, “You know a Bible story? Then you get out your phone and tell us one” (lol!). I told her in a joking way, “Little girl, I have tons of Bible stories and I don’t need a phone. Which one do you want to hear? The lepers being healed, or the lame man, or the blind man? How about the fishermen?” That got their attention and they all agreed on the story of the fishermen as I pulled the chairs in front of me and they all piled on to listen. Oh what a cute captive audience I had. Only for a moment as mom came and called them all to go home before I could start. I could hardly stand for that moment of pure joy to end, they made our day. The kids all complained loudly, but I told them I could hardly wait to see them again (and meant it!)
After they had gone, Adam said, “They were just crazy”, but he had a big grin on his face just as he had as they were all talking simultaneously to get our attention in the lobby. And the same lopsided grin he had as he sang the ABC’s with them. What a special moment to brighten our day. I sincerely hope to see those precious little ones again. <3
Jesus loves the little children. And boy, so do I.
We still are uncertain as to what the timing is for Adam. There are some things we need to figure out in order to find a place that will continue PT and be one that won’t be trying to move him after a few weeks. It is unsettling for us, I cannot know how much it may be for him.
Mother’s Day came and went. There were some nice moments and some bittersweet ones. Adam made me a card, it was a flashback to his childhood. He also made me an enormous floppy pinkish red straw hat. Or shall I say the hat was pre-made, but he decorated it with the flowers pushed through the weaving with pipe cleaners. I put it on for him. He sat there for a bit and began to chuckle. I asked him what was so funny. He affirmed my suspicions… “YOU!”
I am not cut out for the mold of a Kentucky Derby hat. Evidently it was Kentucky Derby Day when they made it. It hangs on the wall for now 🙂
Sometimes it seems as if we just continue to go through the motions. It’s hard not to feel as if you are failing at those times. It is there when we reach for God (or some will choose something that will temporarily dull the pain or distract them from their sorrow). I was pondering that this morning, how mankind looks for something always to make them happy or to help in their sadness. But the things of this world they grasp, that they spend time in? Eventually they stop giving the initial fun or relief and begin to cause more pain. Isn’t there an old saying about a serpent’s bite? I think it applies to far more things than just being drunk. Some hopefully will grope for and find God in their situation. Those that do are the ones that have a prize that cannot be forfeited or lost.
We still have pain in this world. We still cause pain for others. But those of us who have believed upon the Lord Jesus Christ will have our tears wiped away one day. I believe some of those tears will be ones I have shed for stupid choices of my own. I also believe some of them will be for the friends, family, loved ones that I have wept for because they do not believe in the One who loves them and gave Himself for them. Fortunately I know that Adam placed His faith in what Jesus did on the cross for Him almost a couple centuries ago. I know many don’t believe, but just as many who don’t, they believe because they have been into a religion or because they are intelligent, that it is nonsense and not truth. I pray they will spend some time looking into it for their sake, for the ones they love as well. This life is temporary. What we are going through is too. But eternity is where my home will be. I pray things will continue to improve for Adam as I believe they will. But we also look forward to the place where our citizenship belongs. Life is short, and when that day comes, I know Adam will walk with no limp, and will run with no problem, so will I. 🙂 I hope you too know where it is you will go when you die.
Well, our hopes for therapy to continue are as usual dashed for the immediate future. Physical therapy (as recently as a couple of days ago) told me that Adam is doing ‘awesome’ and has shown off his walking skills that day to Occupational therapy. She said he is a motivated hard worker. The next day the case manager tells me that he needs to be discharged as he is ‘not making progress’. We were told he needs more therapy by many in the facility, but they cannot speak up in this system. How on earth do their records not match?
The speech therapist is the only one who has said Adam is status quo. So we have been working extra hard in that area. Mostly on swallowing. His speech has certainly improved, along with his cognitive skills, although he has had no cognitive therapy (seems so important in the case of a brain injury). The system is brutal and tiring. The people working in it are empathetic (some) and others cold and jaded. I don’t know who I feel sorrier for. I spoke to a liaison at the house of representatives today regarding Adam, and she said she has spoken to ALTC’s via Mercy Care, two separate people, and has faced the same frustration I am (Lack of straightforward answers).
Bottom line, suddenly the facility does not take the kind of disability that Adam has. Long term they told me that they only take vents, trachs and in-house dialysis. The case manager stated they were a specialty care for these types of disabilities only (I guess — hard to really tell with some of the wording). She stated they take short term for rehab and then discharge to an appropriate setting. A couple days ago she said she would fix the error of Adam being placed here short-term, and would bring it up at the meeting and switch it to long term. Now she says she made a mistake and misinformed me and profusely apologized (I really do believe she is sorry, but has no choice). I was under the understanding the short term admission was a mistake on either Barrows or their part, at this point I don’t think either place would admit it. I would have thought they might have told us along the line sometime, some hint, some terminology that would have given us a clue that we were not a long term placement. How is it that suddenly this case manager (who has worked there for years and seems fully capable and very intelligent) did not know that Adam was not the type of patient they accepted long term? Adam’s roommate is also long term, he also was involved in a motor vehicle accident, was there long before Adam arrived, and he is not any of the above listed disabilities. I imagine he will be there long after Adam.
We were hoping not to have multiple moves for Adam’s sake. This was certainly not our choice of facility, but now that he has been here? It will be possibly easier for us concerning travel time, not sure yet until I see the choices (not that I truly believe we can choose, worse than the lesser of two evils in many cases). But what about Adam? He is getting adapted only to be uprooted again, makes me sad. I wish they might have told us before we put up towel racks, hooks, brought in a zero gravity chair, etc…Not one of us had any inkling from any staff member at any time. Seems implausible.
I know that the Lord has a reason here. I pray others will not be tossed around like this — such trauma for all of us that are involved but much worse for the patient. You just start to get settled in, you stay as low key as possible, and try to be helpful. We were trying to add to his therapies, and make sure he was getting to the activities and yet to help him become more independent. The discharge sure came up suddenly, we may never know why. It may be because we have far more visitors than they have seen with any of their patients, and they may be accustomed to little or no visitors in some of their cases. We notice there are very few visitors and those who do come are few and far between (and most do not stay long). All you have to do is look at the parking lot, a lot are reserved for physicians, and/or staff. That would make the accountability almost nil for most of their patients.
Two days before we were told they wanted to discharge Adam, we were told to remove our list of “helps” for Adam from the wall. Our list included to please offer him a drink in the morning hours along with offering restroom to him. A reminder to please supervise his eating (sometimes he had a tray unfinished or once totally forgotten that we know of). We asked if they would please take him to the sink to brush his teeth because Adam wouldn’t think to ask. We asked if they would put on his walking brace when they got him up in the morning and left Banner’s ‘how to’ instruction sheet for putting on his night arm brace. (Banner also had it up on their wall). We were told that by putting up this list we were ‘violating HIPAA privacy rules’. I did ask the charge nurse which item on the list released information about him, and didn’t feel it was a violation since I was the one putting the info up there. He told me that the visiting people from the state would see it as a HIPAA violation, so I just told him I would be happy to remove it in order to not cause an issue.
We know the good Lord is holding us in His hand, although we are frustrated, tired and don’t know what we will do next, He does. So I can only try to remember to acknowledge Him in all my ways, and He will direct my steps. We trust in Him. And we appreciate your prayers, knowing they matter. You have encouraged us as we deal with these things.
Our favorite Bible verses of today.
My soul, wait silently for God alone,
For my expectation is from Him.
He only is my rock and my salvation;
He is my defense;
I shall not be moved.
In God is my salvation and my glory;
The rock of my strength,
And my refuge, is in God.
Trust in Him at all times, you people;
Pour out your heart before Him;
God is a refuge for us. Selah Psalm 32:5-8
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
The ugly: The facility just told me they want to meet for ‘discharge planning’ because Adam is not making progress. Keep praying with us.
There is good and there is bad, and there is always sad in almost every day we walk through. We are not discouraged, and yet we do get that way.
We went to a specialist for his eyes. One who specializes in a couple of his conditions. He was great, spent almost three hours with us. One thing I hadn’t anticipated is having to get Adam in and out of his wheelchair, and into different chairs in different rooms for differing exams. We got fitted also for a couple of eyeglasses, but he was there to check his optic nerves. Bottom line, he did not think surgery would help the crossing eyes, and he said both the optic nerves had damage. He didn’t realize that Adam had been tracking laterally with his eyes, so he thought an MRI was in order. We do not lose hope. It wasn’t the best news we had hoped for, but I thought of the Lord’s ability to open eyes, (in more ways than one), and no matter the diagnosis there is always hope. He recently prayed for his meal, and in that I smiled thinking of Adam’s spiritual eyes in some ways being opened as he reads through the Bible with us. He thanked God for the day (that can often be where he hesitates or stops), but he continued to thank God for all those who are our friends, and for all of those who help Him and said he loved them. It was a touching moment.
He had his swallow study, they stated that he is an aspiration risk still, and that things were not getting better. And that ‘statistically’ if things had not improved by now that they likely weren’t going to. I smiled and thanked her, and prayed for wisdom and strength as she was also discussing stopping therapy. Whatever will happen I know Jesus will give us strength to get through, but I also do not give up hope. At the end of the conversation she said she would work with him as long as her boss would allow.
The same day of speaking to the speech therapist regarding his swallowing, a staff member who is an older gentleman from Ethiopia, told me he met my mom (who came to visit Adam with my daughter Tierney). He told me he couldn’t believe he knows her from the other facility and that she had given him a Bible in his own language. We had always gotten along well, although he only came in to weigh Adam, he then came in to look at Adam (he is the head of restorative nursing there). Out of the blue, he asked how Adam was doing with swallowing. Also my mom and daughter had been there for Physical Therapy and Adam was so happy and grinning ear to ear, he walked to the end of the bars. God cares for us, we need to cast our cares upon Him.
So we press forward…
My second son and his wife are expecting my second granddaughter today, and my third daughter and her husband are expecting my third granddaughter next month. My second daughter continues working to be a P.A. (I need one of those 🙂 ) and found the wedding dress she wants yesterday (for her December wedding). My sister and niece come down with her baby in about 10 days, so many things going on.
On the health front — We are doing additional exercises on swallowing. We are also working on eye tracking ourselves. Some may have given up hope, but we have not. Not because we are blinded to the gravity of things, but because God has never let me down. Oh sure, I have had major sorrows in life. This was one I didn’t expect, but He will never leave us nor forsake us. We are not alone.
The Bible lets us know while there is life, there is always hope (Ecc 9:4). We are still among the living. We love, we laugh, we cry, we weep, we mourn… as I sat outside with Adam before dinner yesterday, as a mom, my heart was so soft and tender as I taken in little details on his bruised, scarred, and somewhat broken body. Tears swim in my eyes and I say a prayer and am thankful he cannot see. But unsure as he takes my hand and holds it in his. But the body is not who we are. It only is the vessel that carries us where we are going, and sometimes God carries us to places we don’t anticipate. There are people there we might not ever have met, nor had a chance to tell of the One who loves them so much, He came to give them life, by giving His own life in their place. One who wants to be close to them as they deal with their broken heart. While there is life, there is hope for you.
If you have more questions about Jesus or the veracity of the Bible, why you should believe, or why you don’t or can’t — feel free to comment with the words ‘more questions’ and I will email you and try to do my best to answer you.
P.S. Please pray for Adam who has had a sore throat for a few days.
Please also pray for us for wisdom with a neighboring room, that keeps it’s t.v. on very loud late at night. Who also turns the light on and when they don’t come, bangs against the table for quite some time. They know this is going on and say that this person is demanding and they can do nothing. They say this person has rights (of course, so does Adam). They wake up Adam quite a lot late at night, we have no clue about overnight, but we want to show wisdom in how to deal with it as the facility hasn’t figured it out. I did talk to this person yesterday somewhat, I have compassion for them, but still need Solomon’s wisdom here.
We love you all, Adam and Holly