Thursday, July 29, 2010

Troy has been doing remarkably well these past few days. He has also been more vocal; whether it's making sounds, moving his mouth as if talking, repeating words or just saying automatic phrases.

I was at the hospital with the girls until 8pm last night and an hour after I got home his mom called me to let me know that she had called the hospital to check on him and the nurse told her that when she walked into the room she said "What's up Troy?!" to which he replied "Nothing much." I, of course, was floored! The girls and I were with him all day and all he would do for us was repeat words and make sounds. LOL. I was so happy to hear that though!

Troy is continuing to progress and the doctors are now talking about extending his stay at Shepherd another 2 weeks. I will never get tired of thanking God and praising Him for blessing me with the opportunity to be able to move up here. I couldn't imagine having to be away from Troy or the girls this long! This Sunday it will be 3 months since the accident and it's amazing how much our lives have changed in 3 months and how much God has blessed us with. Things are great here in GA, everything is so accessible and we love the house. The finances have gotten very tight now that I have the girls to care for, plus gas and maintenance on the car due to driving back and forth to Atlanta and everything else that goes on with living in this world, but I have my complete trust in the Lord that he will provide and supply for my family and I. I have not doubted God's abilities this far, and I don't plan on starting now. This is only the tip of the iceberg. Troy has a very long road ahead of him and I am as prepared as I'm going to be, God will get us through the rest.

I start training classes next week on how to care for him and what I will be doing with him once we get home. That should be very interesting. I'm nervous of how it will be once he's home. The lady with workers comp came by the house the other day to do the measurements and accessing where all the handicap bars and ramps will be installed and making sure that I'll be able to turn the wheelchair in and around the house. The doctor's say Troy has definite potential to walk some day, but they don't know how long it will be before he can fully and independently walk on his own. So, in the meantime I have to be trained and prepared to transport him in and out of a wheelchair by car and in the house. This morning while talking to the therapist, she was showing me how to disassemble the wheelchair to get it into the trunk of the car and she made a comment that hit me straight in the gut and left me without air for a few seconds. She said "From here on out, your routine trips to grocery stores and shopping malls will no longer be routine. You will have to consider yourself as if you are a single mother with 3 children." That really hit home for me. I have already been thinking how I am now responsible for 3 people and I will be running the household on my own, which I have no problems with, but it was the fact of the way she said it that was so realistic to me and shook me up. But, nonetheless, God has put me here because I can handle this and I will not back down from this with my hands down. I will keep my hands raised to the heavens and get my strength from where I have been getting it from up until now -- God!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

OK, it's been a few days since I have blogged. I have been, both, slacking and just not really much to report. Troy continues to progress, but the progress is happening a bit slower now with events happening more on a weekly basis, than a daily basis.

Today was a good day for us with Troy, we were able to go to church this morning and then stay with him until late tonight and enjoyed our time with him, as always. Troy has been laughing and giggling at the girls or me or pretty much anything that amuses him, a lot lately. He even laughs at himself; like during lunch when he was trying to feed himself and he dropped the fork - he thought that was hilarious. LOL. He seems so much more aware of his surroundings and of what is going on around him. When there are people in the room or when we are just in there talking, he'll look from person to person as they talk as if paying attention to the conversation.

When I sit by him he reaches out for me more and even grabbed me by the back of the neck today and pulled me towards him as if he wanted to give me a kiss. At first, it caught me off guard, until I realized what he was trying to do.

It's so sweet to watch the girls interact with him, as well. He really enjoys their company and laughs non-stop at pretty much everything Tyra does or say.

Also, they have now started restraining his left hand to the bed and placing a mitten over his hand. Last night he was trying to pull the GI tube out of his stomach and kept pulling the catheter off! So, tonight was the first night I was there to watch them tie him down. I must say that, although I know it is for his own good and that this is progress, it was very hard to watch that.

I'm excited to see what God has in His plans this week. It seems like every Monday he's doing more and more with the therapists; almost as if since he's nice and rested up on the weekends, he's ready to show off on Monday mornings. LOL.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Troy had a great day yesterday! He did really well in his therapy sessions. The girls and I sat through 2 of his sessions with him yesterday and the girls were an intricate part of one of them. During the first session we sat through they had him sitting up on the edge of the mat and holding himself up, he did great with that! Then the therapist had each of the girls stand in front of him and she would ask him to hug them, kiss them, speak to them. He did all except the speaking, but when his daughter Makia was with him the therapist did get him to say Makia when prompted to say her name. We were all so excited! Her visit to him have been so very helpful for his therapy.

Also, during his second part of that session the therapist took him into his bathroom to shave his face. She would put shaving cream on his finger and he would draw it towards his face. During one of the times he was trying to put the cream on or in his mouth and the therapist was pulling his hand away and saying "No, Troy! That's not food!" and during one of the times she said that he repeated "NOT FOOD!" so loud and clear we all gasped! It was amazing to hear him talking! His voice is not the same and a bit raspy, but the therapist says that with time that will eventually heal, as well, and he'll be able to regain most, if not all, of his normal speech patterns.

Overall yesterday was a great day! I also was able to speak with the doctor in the hallway that confirmed to me that the lower temperature in his right leg is not due to bad circulation, but to that part of his brain not able to control body temperature on that side of his body. Just as the brain is having a hard time controlling movements on his right arm and right leg, it's the same with the brain not being able to control body temperature and regulate blood temperature on that side of his body. The blood is flowing good through his legs so his heart is doing what it needs to do, the cold feeling of his leg and toes is just due to the blood vessels not able to regulate temperature because the brain is not sending the proper messages.

As of today, he has also began urinating more on his own now. They no longer have to IC him as much now through out the day. The nurse today said that they only had to IC him once today, versus 3 or 4 times a day as they have been doing for over a month now. They have him on strong medicines to help him go on his own, so those seem to be working fine now!

I praise God for continued healing and give all glory unto God for being such a merciful and comforting Father to me and the girls. The girls have taken all of this with stride and have not seemed to skip a beat! They beg to go see daddy every day and when it's time to go they all gather around and give him 2 or 3 hugs and kisses and say goodnight to him. It's all so warming to the heart and gives me peace knowing that God continues to watch over my little family and guide me to do the things that are best for all of us, right now.

Troy will be home on August 10th, God willing, and I'm so excited to see what God has in store for us!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Troy has been doing really well these past two days. He has been very alert and spent most of the day today trying to yank his lap belt off and get up from the wheelchair. He isnt strong enough to walk yet, but its obvious he is becoming more aware of his surroundings as he is becoming more and more combative with things around him.

He did very well in therapy today, as well. Cindy, the speech therapist, told me that during lunch today he was giggling and laughing a lot! Troy started giggling and laughing on Sunday with the girls, mostly Tyra. We were in the room talking and just hanging out with him and he would burst out laughing from time to time to something Tyra or Brianna and Kiki would say! It was awesome to watch him laughing! That was the best sound I have hear in a very, very long time!

Troys daughter, Kiki, sang him a song today and he cried! It was very touching. She sang Troy a song that they had shared a few years back when Kiki visited and it was only Troy and her in the car when she was singing. Troy obviously remembered the song because the tears were very real and it was obvious he was emoionally shaken up.

I am loving having my family together in the same room and us sharing laughs, stories, and just loving each other as we did before May 1st. God has really blessed our family and I am humbled by it! God is in total control and I don't know how I would have made it this far without God by my side!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Troy's brother Chris and 3 of Troy's close friends came by today to visit. It was really sweet watching Troy and his brother interact with each other.

I stepped out to pick the girls up something to eat, but while I was gone Chris told me that while joking with Troy, talking with him in his bed, he got Troy to smile real big! I missed it, but I was so excited to hear that Chris got him smiling! There's nothing like a brotherly bond and it showed today!

We also tried to get Troy to give hugs today, but he wasn't up to it today. Yesterday evening Troy was reaching out to the girls and giving hugs and making kissing noises! It was so sweet! I was hoping that he would do it today for Chris, but that's the nature of brain injury, they'll do things one day and then not for a while. Hopefully he'll be up to hugs and kisses tomorrow. It was awesome being able to get hugs from him again! It's been WAY too long!

Today was a good day...tomorrow will be even better! I remain prayerful and faithful in God's healing mercy!

Friday, July 16, 2010

First word!

Troy has officially spoken his first word today! While doing his physical therapy, the therapist was stretching out his legs, as they do every day, and he was groaning and moaning in pain, then the therapist told him "If you want me to stop, tell me to stop" to which Troy replied, in a very clear voice "Stop!"

Unfortunately, I wasn't here to witness him saying the word, but I drove here as soon as I got the call from the therapist. We are now sitting here with him waiting for him to say something else. LOL!

The therapist did tell me not to be too upset if he didn't say it again today, as he only seems to say it when pain is inflicted, but she did tell me that he has also been making kissing noises today. We haven't gotten him to do that either, but I'm elated at the news of all he's done today and giving God all the glory for all of it!

God is awesome and showing His love for us through Troy's progress! I'm so grateful to everyone for all the prayers and thoughts. Please continue the prayers because they are definitely being answered! I also thank God for giving me the strength and perseverance to continue on and keep my faith in that everything will be OK and the patience God has given me to keep on this journey.

Troy still has a very long road ahead of him, but there is nothing God and Troy can't get through. And I'll be sitting by Troy side helping him every step of the way!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Troy has been doing remarkeably well in therapy this past few days. He is fully participating in drinking out of a cup during meals and will even wipe his own mouth from time to time when food gets on his mouth. He has also been upgraded to a level 2 diet which consists of ground up meat and soft cooked vegetables and soft consistency foods like mashed potatoes and macaroni and cheese.

He has also started to follow commands periodically. With the language defect he has, that is a huge feat because they dont know how much he really understands but when they tell him to lift his leg and he does it, that is a good sign that he's beginning to understand commands. Yesterday the speech therapist said that he lifted one and two fingers on command and also mumbled what sounded like the word "more" when she was feeding him. He hasn't done that today, but thy are watching for consistency.

He did really well on the robotic treadmill again today. He was doing most of the stepping. It was awesome to watch him doing that. He had a very focused look on his face for most of it and you could see he was working really hard at it!

Please continue to keep Troy in your prayers. Things are really starting to move along quickly! The nurses keep telling me how he is on the verge of emerging from the coma. The anticipation is building up and we are seeing God working through all of this! Praise God!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Two months ago, doctors in Orlando were ready to write Troy off and consider him a lost case. Well, here we are 9 weeks later and Troy is doing well enough that his time at Shepherd has been extended for the SECOND time! Today was supposed to be his discharge date, and as of yesterday, Troy is now considered well enough to be part of the rehab program and has been extended at Shepherd until August 10! All the glory goes to God, of course!

Troy is now a Rancho level 4, almost a 5. We had a bit of confusion yesterday at the hospital with a nurse stating he has been out of his coma for 3 weeks, but I have since then confirmed that, although he is doing miraculously well, he is on the verge of emerging from his coma.  

He is participating very well in his therapy sessions. They are teaching him how to feed himself, how to bathe himself, how to brush his own teeth, and many other things that will help him be more independant when he comes home.  They even put him on a robotic treadmill today. This is a machine that he grlets strapped into an upright position with a treadmill underneath it and as Troy plants his foot down the machine does the walking movement for him. That was awesome to watch and Troy did very well!

The doctor did mention to me that, due to the lack of movement Troy is displaying on the right side of his body, there seems to be extensive damage to the left side of the brain. The left side of the brain is where the language centers are stored, therefore this is causing Troy not to be able to understand language, therefore not being able to conversate, understand language, process requets, and follow commands. He is only following commands when prompted. The doctor tells me that he will more than likely have this damage for the rest of his life. He says that, although he will never be able to work again, drive again, or be left for long periods of time alone, they will work with Troy to get him to the highest level of independence possible.

I, of course, remain prayerful and trusting that the Lord remains the pilot of this voyage and nothing will happen, except for His holy will!  I am taking everything day by day though in preparation for what God has in store for me and my family!  

I must say that Troy seems to be responding very well to having the girls visit with him everyday! They both look forward to going to visit with him and have adapted to this new way of life very well. I thank God for that and for giving my children peace at heart and allowing them to see the strength God has given me as a model for how they should behave and trust in the Lord.

Troy is doing great things and advancing in his recovery very well. We don't see everything we want to see him doing, but this isn't up to us, it's up to how God has determined for Troy to recover. I'm just happy that I have God to lean on when I start to feel the ground shake beneath me.

Thanks again for all the prayers. Please continue to lift Troy up in prayer, God is definitely answering prayers!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Today was Troy's first time going outside! I got the OK to take him out to the garden on hospital grounds. The girls and I took him outside, walked around with him for a bit and I sat at a bench next to his chair after we went around looking at plants and flowers. It was awesome to be outside with him. To see him looking around, hearing the cars, people walking by, even a few motorcycles rode on by was good! I didn't really notice any big changes in his reaction except for a big frown when an emergency vehicle passed by, very slowly and very loudly! I was even bothered by the noise a bit and after the vehicle finally passed on through, I did notice him frowning and looking a bit agitated. I took him back inside shortly after that, I didn't want to overwhelm him on his first day out.

But overall today was a good day!

Also, they showed me how he no longer needs the hoyer lift to get in and out of bed. He now gets assisted into bed by a nurse or tech pulling him up by his waste; he stands up and turns (with assistance) and he helps put himself in the bed! I was very happy with that because that shows that he's aware enough to know when to pull himself up and when to put his arms out before he sits on the bed.

I was so happy I almost teared up! Today was a good day and I continue to give all the glory to God! This experience has brought me and many others closer to God! I have had moments when I haven't fully understood why God works the way he does, but it's days like today that make it all clear to me! God has a master plan and although I don't always understand it, he loves us and is teaching us a lesson through it all. To God alone be the glory!

Thank you all for the prayers! They are definitely being heard so please continue to pray that God continues to do his holy will in Troys healing and brings him back to us healthy and whole soon!

PS. Please excuse my grammar or typos. I have been posting for the past 3 or 4 days using my phone. I won't have Internet until Thursday of this week, Lord willing, so I'm working on a very tiny screen that makes it very hard for mento proofread. LOL! Please bear with me! Thanks :)

Sunday, July 4, 2010

The girls and I spent the day with Troy today. We were there with him during lunch and dinner today and he ate very well today.

He was extremely active today. He has begun moving his left leg so much now that if we left him too close to something (for instance the bed railing) he would put his foot up against it and push his wheelchair back, even with the brake on! The girls were having a blast watching him push his wheelchair backwards at any chance he got.

He was also very alert while we were there today. It was wonderful spending the day with him like that again. I have really missed him and the time I used to spend with him. But its also wonderful to be able to stay busy with my girls and reassuring them that everything is goof to be OK! They have already adjusted really well to how daddy is now and have already started making plans on how they will help when he comes home.

I am so happy to have my family back together! Tonight the girls and I went driving around town pulling over and enjoying fireworks wherever we could get a glimpse at them. That was fun, and the girls really seemed to enjoy it! This time spent with them in truly a blessing and I am so grateful to God for allowing me to be able to keep our little family together!

Tomorrow it's more unpacking and organizing and then back to spend time with daddy. I got the clear today to be able to take him outside to the garden so we can't wait to get there tomorrow afternoon and take him outside and see how he reacts to the environment. I'm hoping that him being outside and hearing cars, motorcycles and people go by will spark something and jar him awake! He's so close to waking up, every little thing we try might push him over the edge! I'll be praying for that tonight!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

I didnt get a chance to blog last night due to exhaustion! Matt and some other members of the church delivered the first truck load of things to us yesterday. It was such a blessing for them to take time out of their lives to make that drive for me and the girls! We also had some helpers stop by and help with the unloading. I met them for the first time yesterday and they are awesome people! God has surrounded me with wonderful people and I am loving the acquaintances I am making along the way! Thank you all for the tremendous help! I am just overwhelmed by all the love and care that has been shown to my family during this difficult time.

Today, the girls and I decided to put the unpacking aside, for a little while anyway, to go visit with Troy this afternoon. When we got there he was in his wheelchair, in his room, and we found him wearing a piece of construction paper held to the left side of his face with a pair of glasses (sort of like a blinder on one side) The tech couldn't tell me what that was, so I'll have to ask the therapist the next time I see her, but I'm guessing it's to replace the patch they put on his left eye a few days ago. He has been leaning his head a lot to the left so they are blocking his view on that side in hopes that he will start using his right side more. But, other than that he was moving a round a whole lot in his chair! It's amazing how more alert he looks each day! We stayed long enough to have dinner with him. His appetite was great today! His progress is really starting to show!

After dinner the girls and I got him cleaned up, spent a little more time with him, then headed out. While I was at the grocery store, Charlene sent me a text telling me that the nurse had told her that he drank out of a cup today! I was amazed! I couldn't believe it, because just the hour before, while I was feeding him, he wouldn't even hold the spoon for me so he can practice feeding himself.

After talking with her, I called the nurses station and sure enough, during therapy today they placed a therapy cup (it has a handle and sort of looks like a big sippy cup) in his left hand and when asked to drink out of the cup he raised it to his mouth and drank from it! I was overjoyed and thanked God for continuing to show His glory through Troy's recovery!

I am so grateful for how far God has brought us and am excited at how much further God will continue to bring us through the rest of his recovery.

On another note, Troy's next discharge date is July 8th, so I definitely have a lot of work cut out for me, cleaning up and unpacking this house to make it ready for Troy's arrival. The girls and I are so excited to finally have him home!