Thursday, April 21, 2011

Bake Sale/Yard Sale to Benefit Brian

Hi Everyone:

Just wanted to let you know that in addition to the May 16th Hope to Walk Classic & the May 15th Bowling for Brian, we will also be having the bake sale for him once again this year. 

The bake sale is a part of my neighborhood yard sale, which is (gasp) Saturday, May it's going to be a busy weekend!

If any of you are in the Cary/Raleigh area, like to bake, & are interested in participating, please send an email to 

We also are considering taking any donated items to be a part of the yard sale, with proceeds to benefit Brian as well, but have very limited space & means to store them prior to the sale.

Thanks for your interest & support!

Kara (one of Brian's three [poor guy, I know] sisters)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Set Back

Unfortunately, I have hit a setback here in Atlanta. A couple of weekends ago my left knee was swollen and throbbing. Like usual I assumed it was not a big deal and figured it would just go away. Unfortunately it was still about the same Monday morning as I went to therapy at Shepherd and since I knew I could not hide the swelled appearance I brought it up to the therapist and after 9 hours of fun in ER I learned I had broken the femur in my left leg. How this happened I have no idea. I did not fall or or have a moment of extreme stress on my leg that I remember. After follow up with an orthopedist I got confirmation of the fracture and also learned I had a previous fracture located near the new one that I never knew about that but had already healed. I did take more of a beating in my accident on the left side so maybe it is a little more susceptible to injury.

All I know is that I am not allowed to put any weight on it for 30 days and that it will probably take 3-4 months to heal, I am wearing a pretty big brace on my left leg to stabilize it. As if my mobility was not challenged enough I guess I decided to add a fractured leg to the mix (see lovely picture below). So, right now I am just trying to collect my thoughts and figure out what to do in terms of rehabbing my newly fractured leg and getting back to my recovery efforts. I knew that this journey is and full of ups and down but this is definitely frustrating. I would say that most people with spinal cord injuries have some secondary issues and I know that I continue to have more then my fair share but I will get through it.

Thanks again for all your interest and support.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

March Update from Brian

I am here in my second month in Atlanta and I am just trying to stick with it everyday and trying to do my best. I always heard and read how Shepherd was just an amazing place and it is good to be here right now. The staff are all really nice and helpful and try to push me as much as they can. I am really trying not to get impatient with the slow progress but it is hard. The stuff I see at this hospital on a weekly basis just takes you through an array of emotions. One day I will meet a guy here all the way from Australia who has been here for over a year and tells me he could not even lift up his arms before he was in this program. Next, I met a guy in the elevator who's tells me his wife is here and has been a coma for over 60 days. We ran into each other a few days later and exchanged stories and even blogs. The way he spoke about his wife was tough. It was not just his words but his tone and the hurt in his eyes. You could tell his wife is just his world and he would just be so lost without her. She had an unexplained stroke and they do not know when and if she will wake up and if she does what function she may or may not lose. I did not know how to even react or what to even say to him, all I could do was wish him the best and tell him I would pray for her to recover.

I have definitely seen that tragedy like this does not care about your race, gender, age, or social status. I see all types of people here suffering from various neurological disorders, some that cannot do much for themselves.  It is tough knowing the people I see are someone's grandparent, parent, child or sibling. I will never understand why some of these things happen to these people. One of the worst stories I have heard here is about a girl I met whom a few years ago was paralyzed from the chest down. She was just at home laying in her driveway trying to get some sun and fell asleep and her father did not see her as he arrived home and ran over her. I cannot imagine the guilt her father must carry. So many people working hard and just wanting to be as close to normal as possible. I do not know what I can do but I wish I could just fix everyone. As hard as it to consider myself lucky sometimes, here I do get constant reminders of how my injury could be far worse and I could not be making any progress at all like so many others.

The Shepherd Center is often the stop for many people soon after their accidents. So the care they receive may be just trying to save their life and get them over the initial trauma. This is your more typical insurance covered care. I am in the program true to its name, Beyond Therapy. I am here because I want to and expect to get better and have all of your support to allow me this opportunity. Many of you have already seen or been sent stuff about the second annual golf charity event in May that I am so fortunate to receive. This year it has been expanded a bit with a bowling event the night before the golf tournament.  Since I started my recovery attempt on October, 29 2009, I get constant reminders of how fortunate I am and there is not a bigger reminder then this event that shows me in some ways just how lucky I am to have the support to even take advantage of some of these opportunities. Last year I was just overwhelmed by it all but this year I can honestly say I am looking forward to it.

I have been a little slack with taking some video but I have tried to include some of the work I do here in Atlanta. You will see me doing some core work and some more biking and some crawling.