Sunday, November 23, 2008

Update on My Brother

I saw him today for the first time in 9 days! (In case you are wondering why so long - it is for reasons I chose not to control - probably the hardest trial I have ever been through right along with my lil brother almost dying a month ago!)He REALLY has come a VERY long way in just a month!And I know I have not updated you since I told you over 3 weeks ago (sorry). I will try to backtrack so you can get the full picture of things...
  • After his MRI on the 31st they took the bolt and the stint out in his head, this meant they were no longer going to monitor the swelling in his brain (always a good sign when things like that are no longer needed). Also this was the day he was saying yes and no with his right-hand finger... he told my sister he knew Jesus loved him and that he loved Jesus!!!! (That is REALLY ALL that matters!)
  • For a good couple days there he had a wicked temperature of 104 at the highest! God showed me that temperature really had to be broken - we were prayin'! He stopped moving around as much as he was at first, that was very hard to see, but I had faith God was moving in that fever!
  • They had been telling us that the brain stem controls the coughing and gagging reflexes which they think he damaged, but Matthew had been coughing a lot already and we saw him gag a couple times.
  • They were also saying they are not sure if Matthew will ever see, walk or speak again, they also mentioned possible hearing damage, but the good news was he was breathing above his vent machine, and he was by far off of a lot of the meds they had him on!
  • On Nov. 4th he went into the O.R. to have a Tracheotomy so they could prepare him for his upcoming surgery to repair his shattered nose and the many broken bones in his face and jaw.
  • On Nov. 6th his temperature went down (almost) to normal and he started Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy which he seemed to respond very well to. A friend of ours also thought he saw Matthew open his eyes a bit - but we had yet to see him "wake up".
  • On the 7th he raised two fingers and made a thumbs up to the doctor and they got his temperature under control - praise God - the maker of heaven and earth!
  • On the 8th he voluntarily moved his LEFT leg, a very good sign since this is the side he has been struggling to move.
  • On the 9th I got news regarding prayers all over going up for my brother. From across the U.S. and Canada, but also in Latvia! over a Latvian radio station! This amazed me! And later on Czechoslovakia got added to the list of locations as well!
  • Matthew's Maxillofacial Surgery was moved 5 times and eventually ended up at 1:00pm on Nov. 14th.
    • Before his surgery I was commenting on the fact that his face looked so good compared to the day he got there... it was amazing to just see how much the outside of his face was so untouched even though the inside remained in pieces. He was looking like him again. Though we knew the swelling and bruising would be another reality after his surgery.
    • His surgery lasted about 5 hours, they made two incisions on the outer sides of his eyes, they put small screws in to hold the bones back together, they packed his nose, he needed two units of blood during the procedure and he continued to bleed out his nose afterward for about 12 hours, his fever also went back up for a day or so.
    • While in the O.R. they did a Gastrostomy because they wired his jaw shut and can no longer have tubes running through his mouth or nose.
    • He got out of surgery in time for me to see him for about 5 minutes before visiting hours were over - I hated leaving him like that and ended up not being able to visit him till today!
  • On the 19th Matthew tried to open his eyes!!! He wanted them open SOOO bad that he put his right arm up and took his eyelashes in his fingers and PULLED his eye open!!! (We still do not know if he can see, his eyes are still dilated and unresponsive.)
  • On the 21st he was still trying to get his eyes open, they both opened about a quarter inch when he tried really hard. They also finally took his neck brace off and now he was saying yes and no by shaking his head!!!!! AND they sat him up in a special wheelchair and helped him stand up!!!! This ended up making him throw up, poor guy - vomiting with a trach and your jaw wired shut cannot be fun!
  • The big news - HE CAN SEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!
    • My sister waved at him when she went into his room and he waved back!!! He rubbed my little neice on her head. He reached for a stuft animal many times over without being told where it was. And he was playing peek-a-boo with one of my sister's kids!!!
    • God - You are AMAZING!!! Thank you for your grace and your lovingkindness towards my brother, thank you so much for healing him as fast as you are, and for giving a little more hope every simple day, we love You VERY much!!
  • Finally - Today when I got there he was resting very well... I was glad at this because my sister said he had not been sleeping a lot. They moved him into a special chair and put it at the nurses station so they could put a big "tent" around his bed (because now he is moving so much he is a fall risk when no one is right next to him). Every time so far that they get him upright he gets sick, so they had him holding a bucket and he put it on his head, when I asked him if he was being funny he shook his head yes!! (I was so glad to see him like this!) They had to leave him in his chair for about 15 minutes so he did end up getting sick, but all the nurses were passing him by saying "Good for you Matthew!" for getting out of his bed and his room. After they put him into his "tent bed" he was so tuckered out that he took his sheet over his head with his right arm and feel asleep so you could barely see he was there! :o) Here's a picture...
  • Also today I asked him if he wanted me to sing to him - now that he is answering yes and no I thought I should ask instead of just doing it like I did before - after all he is 13! He shook his head yes. While I was singing he put his fingers in my mouth and I thought he wanted me to stop because he was plugging my mouth. I asked him if he wanted me to stop and he shook no, so I kept singing (all worship songs of coarse!). When his nurse had to come do things for him I would scoot out of the way and stop singing. He would reach for me, I told him I was right there and I asked him what he wanted and he put his fingers to his mouth just like when he was putting them IN my mouth... so I asked him if he wanted me to keep singing and he shook yes. (I LOVED that!) When I sang him one last song before visiting hours were over I got closer to his face and he smiled at me!!!!!

(Melt my heart Jesus! Melt my heart!!!)


Alicia said...

Oh my gosh, Carolyn!!! That last part is making me cry!!!! OH…that is sooooo sweet!! He wanted to hear his sister singing to him!!!!

I’m just amazed at his progress. God is so good!!!!!

LuvLee said...

Just popping in to say that you are an Amazing Inspiration and give you a big HUG!!!!!

Rebecca said...

I’ve been wondering how he was doing & glad you updated. THRILLED that it’s with such good news! YAY for all of the progress Matthew is making. He’s a strong fighter and with the grace of God will make it through this trial.

Krista said...

God is amazing! He can do things far beyond what we ever expect! Have a blessed Thanksgiving!!

Loriann said...

Hi Carolyn,
God sent me to this site… Had to be God!!!
Wow, I will be checking back, as often as I can. God is an AWESOME GOD !!!
We will be praying for you and your family.

Angela said...

Jesus, we praise Your Holy Name,,the great Physician. Thank You for doing more than the Dr.’s could have imagined, or thought. Thank You for Ephesians 3:20 this precious child, thank You for displaying Your wonderous power and glory in such a mighty way. Once again Jesus, the evil one may have intended this to harm Matthew, but You have intended it for good, for the saving of many lives. You have plans to prosper this child and not harm him. Plans to give him a future and a hope. Father God, You have called Matthe the apple of Your eye and a crown of splendor in Your right hand. For Matthew is the head and not the tail…alleliua, for going on before him to make the crooked places straight and the rough patches smooth..
amen amen amen

Traci said...

Hi! I’m Traci and I followed you home from Sherry’s blog! I just have to say that to arrive here to read this particular post was incredible. To read about God’s hand in all of this is amazing and I would consider myself blessed to be able to hold your brother up in prayer!

Happy Mama said...

Me Too Me too I was also crying by the end TANK YOU FOR SHARING!! We will keep praying!

Alicia said...

I remember reading this before. But, it still gives me goose bumps on how good and awesome our God is!! We are continuing to pray for him, and for all of you!!!

BTW...I have an award for all my blog followers, so go and check it out!!!!