Brian currently is wrapping up his first full day in rehab!
They "wheeled" him through the tunnel yesterday evening & after another restless night, they put him right to work this morning.
He got to shave himself (which couldn't have been any worse than the job Dad did on him in ICU--no offense, Dad) & even comb his hair. I guess the side part is no longer. Wonder if he'll let Brian T. give him a haircut? It's no Mitchell's look but, hey, it's in the budget.
Though I've yet to visit the rehab hospital myself, I hear it is the building next to the hospital. They keep him pretty busy during the weekdays, about six hours of therapy during the week & two on Saturday. I'm told that though he has constant visitors (aka, my parents), he'd love to see some with less gray hair & those who are a lot more fun (Did that get the point across you wanted, Dad? About how you count but not really? Of course, I'm jesting about the not counting part--we all know the constant dedication & commitment my dad shows to his son & his recovery. But the cooler visitors--on that one, I'm totally serious.). Brian's pretty tired & still coming out of the cobwebs from the trauma (I remember one of the first nurses changing one of his IVs the first night he was in ICU called it "milk of amnesia"), but once he gets his bearings, he enjoys the company.
The visitors schedule:
M-F 4-9 pm
Sat-Sun 12-9 pm
He had a good friend come from Raleigh to see him yesterday & another one from Charlotte stopped by last night. Eliana continues to be so amazingly supportive & always seems to get the Brian we know & love to come out for a little bit. We love you & thank you, Eli!
Today he spent a good amount of time rolling himself around in a monster truck wheelchair. He hasn't gotten the sleek model yet, as this one allows him to recline if he gets dizzy, but my dad said he did well, more out of a desire to get out of his room than anything. He did send some people & other wheelchairs scrambling on some of those tight turns down the hall. Rookie. Guess he'll work on those again tomorrow. I'm just impressed he had the strength to do it after all the time he's been stuck in bed.
He's not much for eating, who would be with all he's been through, but of course it's important that he does. Well, bring in Mom. She got him to eat a dinner of phenom proportions compared to earlier today. Apparently the trick, in addition to being the Mom she is, is to give him one bite that's really equivalent to, say, 12.
On a more serious note, we still don't know where Brian will end up in terms of the final outcome. Again I just have to share how much murkier of a process this is than I would have ever imagined. He has a lot of therapists working with him--not just for the trauma to his legs. It's almost like a reset button has been hit & he's lost some time that they have to help him regain & readjust to--some of those more day-to-day sorta things. This apparently is pretty normal for what all he's been through & even just getting up & moving in a routine seems to take care of a lot of it already.
I got to speak to him on the phone today to tell him that he's got a niece coming in June. He said he was glad to hear that Faye (It is another small miracle that we're having a girl as my husband & just don't agree on boy names & we've got enough to focus on right now without wasting time on that discussion!) was healthy, especially because we had a major health scare with our son when I was 20 weeks pregnant that probably laid the foundation for my faith in Jesus Christ that continues to help me make sense of all this too. Another story for another post, perhaps.
Anyway, I have to say that, though he's got a lot of work ahead of him, he continues to defy odds with how rapidly he progresses--which is a good thing because insurance companies these days sure don't like you to stay put in the treatment you need for very long! Though, again, something for another post, perhaps.
I made contact with the Spinal Cord Injury Support Group point person today in Raleigh to start looking at where we go from here in terms of resources & how to get him some emotional support from people who've been there & she was great. Apparently, Raleigh has great support group, so I'll definitely be at their 1st meeting with 100 questions later this month. My parents also learned of the Charlotte chapter. Ironically enough, these are the only two areas in the entire state with this resource (When I say ironically, I really mean continued blessings from God, for those of you haven't caught onto the subtle spiritual undertones of this blog--forgive me, I'm feeling punchy tonight ;). The Charlotte group meets next weekend so my parents are excited about that. As Suzanne in Raleigh told me this evening, there is no manual for this stuff--though Jamie said & I agree that we're going to write one with Brian when this is all said & done.
An even more immediate blessing is this wonderful man who used to run a support group in Charlotte that I called today as well. Though his group no longer meets, he wasted no time contacting my parents & will be going to see Brian on Friday. He was injured 20 years ago at the age of 14 & even invited my parents to see the custom built home he & his wife live in now. I know my parents are so excited for Brian to meet him & to meet him themselves as well.
I just can't help but think about how what all of us are experiencing with Brian in this crisis envelops completely what Christ came to teach. One of those many times someone was testing Him to see if He was who He said He was:
Jesus answered him, "The first of all the commandments [is]: 'Hear, O Israel, the LORD our God, the LORD is one. And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.' This [is] the first commandment. And the second, like [it, is] this: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these (Mark 12:29-12:31)."
First, we give such glory to God for his merciful sparing & healing of Brian.
Second, we say a prayer of thanks for you all everyday. We continue to be so touched by all this love & support for Brian & our family, especially when we all know that the journey is just beginning.
At this point, I have to say, it's like the actual accident itself was the easy part but I have to find such comfort in all the Goodness that has come out of something so seemingly horrific thus far...