Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Keeter Christmas Eve

Brian is doing so well! He's still on a lot of pain meds & the like but he's really starting to come to ever so slightly. It's so nice to see him without that tube down his throat & he's doing well breathing without too much assistance from the ventilator. He opened his eyes a few good times & seemed to communicate a special personal message with each of us tonight. Man, I love that kid.

He pulled the chest tube out yet again today but they don't think it's a problem this time as his body seems to have moved beyond needing it. Maybe he'll get a discount on the bill to take it out? ;)

Thankfully, the CT scan to check his abdomen & pelvis came back fine.

The physical therapist came by just to do a little stretching with him since he's pretty stove up from being in that bed for so many days. This allows him to be unrestrained--his wrists are tied down tightly to keep him from pulling out all the tubes. He was a little annoyed at first but warmed up to her & even did some of the arm movements in his own direction with her, when he wasn't annoyed & trying to sleep. Well, he started heading towards his face like he had a scratch & so she let him have the freedom to itch. FAKE OUT! He totally started grabbing at his neck brace, trying to get it off, little trickster.

God is taking such good care of him: His fever's going down & so is his heart rate. He was pretty hot last night & today so the nurse is trying to keep him cool with cool compresses & she even taped a small fan to the corner of his bed. Apparently, he gets hot, agitated, & that's when he starts pulling at things. He did it with me today with some tubes & just like the neck brace incident you have to talk him out of pulling things--he's still that physically strong!

Myra brought some more (yes, more--you people have no idea what Keeter Christmas is like) decorations to his room--ornaments for his tree, pictures of Rocco in a Santa hat, window decals, & a nativity scene along with some small goodies she did to share in thanks with ICU staff & other families spending the holidays in the hospital. So, some of this Christmas stuff may annoy Brian but the staff sure like it!

Traditional Christmas Eve dinner was a bit nontraditional. Brian's good friend kindly gave us access to her place which is minutes from the hospital so we had a leisurely meal of Harris Teeter bbq, mac & cheese, potatoes, & asparagus (slim pickings 30 minutes before closing) between the evening & night visiting hours. You know what? It wasn't that bad either. Her neighbor even brought us just baked cookies when she found out we were there--& she doesn't even know us!

What this Christmas Eve did was take away all that great but superfluous stuff & really make the meaning hit home. Christmas for us this year is being thankful for a Savior, who has graciously spared my brother to allow us to be together another year as a family, & the outpouring of love, support, prayers, gifts, & the numerous other blessings from you all.

I subscribe to this great, short daily devotional that really touched me today on the Eve of Christmas & I wanted to share...The Steadfast Faith of Joseph & Mary

If a kind & loving God can ask so much of the parents of Our Savior, we can all keep praying & trusting in God to take care of Brian's needs too...


  1. Keeter clan - On this Eve before Christmas, each of you and especially Brian are in my thoughts and prayers. You are a wonderful and supportive family and Brian is blessed to have you there during this time. Brian - Stop giving the nurse's trouble and get better as soon as possible. I hope to see you soon!

  2. Kara and Keeter Family,

    I just wanted to send a brief message wishing you all a Merry Christmas. As I was flying home to be with my family from Tennessee on Tuesday afternoon, I left a cold and dreary Nashville. I boarded the plane and immediately fell asleep. When the pilot came over the intercom to let us know we had started our dissent into RDU I took the opportunity to open the window next to me revealing a sky full of sunshine above a lower level of clouds. This brought my mind back to your current situation and helped me realize that even when the skies of our lives are clouded, the SON is always shining above the darkness and in due time will be revealed to us! Stay strong through your ordeal and thank you for keeping us so well posted.

    God Bless

  3. Chris and I just wanted to wish the Keeter family a Merry Christmas. Brian continues to be in our thoughts each day and prayers each night. We love you, Brian!
    Dana and Chris

  4. Hi Brian

    Checking in on ya! Good to see you getting stronger hour by hour. Merry Christmas Big Bro! Love you

    Merry Christmas Roo, Pete, Kara, Brian T, Owen, Mom (Mrs. Peter) and Dad. Love you guys

  5. Merry Christmas Eve! I can't wait to see you all tomorrow on my way back to Atlanta and wish you a Merry Christmas in person. Although, I have to say I will miss my routine travel phone call to Brian. We all know how much he looooves to talk on the phone, but he's always a good sport and occupies at least 30 min to an hour of my drive :)

    Love you Brian! Keep up the good work, sounds like you are making a lot of progress. Tomorrow is going to be a great day for you and your family!

  6. "Great faith is the product of great fights"
    "Great testimonies are the outcome of great tests"
    "Great triumphs can only come out of great trials" Smith Wigglesworth

  7. Merry Christmas, Brian. Not a day has gone by that Cindy and I have not thought of you and talked about your progress. It really does sound like things are improving a little each day. Hopefully it won't be long before we can share ICU stories. I had my own experience with the trauma center and a long stay in ICU several years ago... Keep working hard.

    Kara, thank you again for this window into what's going on and for your tireless positivity. Tell Brain that O'Toole stopped by wish you all a Merry Christmas ;)

  8. MERRY CHRISTMAS KEETER FAMILY!!! What a miraculous time of year - still praying for more Keeter miracles to come!

    Brian, I think some of us will see you for New Year' should get excited about that!!


  9. Merry Christmas Brian and the rest of the Keeter clan!!!! I've been thinking about all of you nonstop and I hope you have a wonderful day. Brian, I wish I was able to come spend New Year's with you, but you know I have the wedding to go to in the Outer Banks. Otherwise I would be in that room sipping sparkling grape juice with you boo!

    I miss you Brian Bear...can't wait to see your face again. :) It's not the same without our daily texts and conversations you know.

    Love you,
    Amanda Bear

  10. Merry Christmas! Just wanted to say we are thinking about Brian and the entire Keeter Family this morning. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you!

    Hope to see you soon!

  11. Brian,
    Merry Christmas! Sounds like you're continuing to get better and better. Meador broke the news to me about my Christmas present - and I have to say I'm impressed with the effort you were going to make just to wrap up one piece of coal!!! Anything to make me feel dumb! It's the thought that counts though, right? Miss you and see you soon. Give your sisters a break and be nice to them, after all it's Christmas! ;)


  12. Brian,
    I am thinking about you and praying for you daily! I hope Christmas brings lots of miracles and progress in your recovery! Keep your head up!

    Emily Hailey Stokes

  13. Merry Christmas! We are so glad to hear that you are progressing. We pray for you every day and plan to see you soon.