Thursday, December 31, 2009

December 31, 2009

Johnny,

Happy New Years Eve!!

Mom and Jackie came to visit you today. Mom said that you were pretty much the same as yesterday. The nurse had to drain your bladder because you had over 500cc. Yesterday they had to drain it twice because you had 400cc and 653cc. I know that must contribute to how lethargic you are and it can't be comfortable.

Dr. Thomas came by again and filled your pump. He used a 4x concentrate dose so he won't have to fill it as often. Right now your pump is at 363 mg. Julia told mom that he is very happy with your left fingers. She waxed them again today. Mom said that your fingers are almost laying flat Karen talked to mom again today about Rehab without walls. Pray that bluecross/blueshield approves this when it comes time for that.

Mom shaved you and cleaned your ears and nose. She also trimmed your toenails which grossed Jackie out.

You seem so depressed, we are hoping that after your swallow test on Monday they will let you eat more...that seemed to be the highlight of your days at Traymore.

Love you Johnny!! xo Jen

P.S.
Johnny's Room Update:
You have a framed out room and a roof. I'll post pictures soon.

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!!

My prayer for each of you out there...I pray that if you don't have a relationship with Jesus, you seek Him. If you don't have a healthy relationship with your family,
take the time to repair it. Life is too short and if Johnny's accident has taught me anything, it is just how much I need Jesus and how much I love my brother. I know without a doubt that without Jesus' answered prayers, my brother would not be here. Happy New Year!! I look forward to seeing you or hearing from you in 2010!!
God Bless!!

December 30, 2009

Johnny,

It was standing room only today in your room....Mom, Dad, Diana, and I. We all showed up to be apart of your assessment meeting.

Results of the meeting:
Dr. Thomas came yesterday and upped your baclofen pump. Said your calf incisions look beautiful. Will be adjusting level again tomorrow.

Kristina - Speech therapist:
Said you pointed to Dallas in response to where you were and you knew the year. She said you seemed more alert yesterday compared to the first two days she saw you. Today you are very sleepy. She is waiting to see your potential.

Dr. Chock -
I don't even want to put his report in here because frankly he doesn't know what he's talking about. That's my opinion! He visited with you for about 10 minutes today after you were given 10mg of hydrocodone and slept for several hours. You would wake up when your name was called but would go right back to sleep. He put you at a Rancho 3....idiot! You were a Rancho 3 when you were in the coma. He did agree to reevaluate you later today.

Craig - Physical therapist:
Going to leave casts on until Monday. He said you have no stretch in standing with cast but need to get used to standing. His main goal for you is to get you to 80%-85% on the tilt board. Right now you are at 60%. Once you master this goal, you will attempt sitting to standing. You still have soft tissue contractor that he's having to deal with.

Julia - Occupational/Physical therapist:
Main focus : Hands
She will be using hot pads and paraffin wax to loosen the hand muscles. Getting new splints soon. You tolerate your splints well. Hoping for functional movement to use spoon to feed yourself and toothbrush to brush teeth. You will be evaluated soon for another dose of botox.

Karen -
She works in the admittance office and deals with insurance. She said that your discharge date is January 25th...we are hoping that this date will be pushed back when you are evaluated again. Of course, Dr. Chock's Rancho number won't help our cause. She also talked to us about Rehab without walls...it's where therapists come out to the house for therapies 15-20 hours per week. This will be a real blessing once your home.

After the meeting, we all went to your therapy and watched you stand on the tilt board. I got it on video and plan to upload the video on the blog as soon as I figure it out. You also had therapy with Julia and she dipped your hands in paraffin wax. Then you had therapy with Kristina and she gave you orange juice and apple sauce.

By the time you got back to your room, you were so tired you fell right to sleep.

Love you!! xo Jen

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

December 29, 2009

Johnny,

You were seen today....
Jennifer Kids and Cooper saw you sitting in your wheel chair out in the hall. They stood near you for about a minute when someone came up and started talking to you. They said you looked tired. You had been to physical therapy. Jennifer said the next time she saw you, you were sleeping. You must have had a hard work out.

It's snowing at my house as I type this. What a beautiful mess! Cody just got his truck back from the Christmas Eve snowing. He was driving to Cedar Hill and the car in front of him started spinning so he changed lanes to avoid hitting it and caught some ice and went right into the guard rail. He took his truck to a little hole in the wall body shop near our house and the guy fixed it for cheap in less than 24 hours. He picked it up today and then headed to mom's house...I was a nervous wreck waiting for him to call and tell me he made it okay. I guess you never stop worrying about your children! Mom still worries about you.

Love you!! xo Jen

P.S.
Johnny's Room update:
Framers came out this morning...mom said she heard them at 7:15am. I wonder how far they got before the weather was unbearable.

December 28, 2009

Johnny,

Mom came in to find both your legs in casts up to your knees. Only your toes were peeking out at the bottom. It was a little upsetting for her to find you that way, not knowing that they were going to do that. But, it didn't seem to both you at all. Mom and I both signed your cast.

I came by with my friend Jennifer and her son Cooper. Jennifer's dad is at the same place you are only he's on the 4th floor. We visited for a couple of hours, me with you and her with her dad....that didn't sound like the proper grammar...oh well. You seemed very tired, your cuff is still inflated on your trach which prevents you from talking. I'm sure that wears you out because you keep trying to breath through your mouth but are unable to. You look pretty comfortable considering you have both legs in casts.

The weather is suppose to be bad tomorrow, if I drive in it, I'll come see you...if not, I'm glad I saw you today.

We held hands and watched TV for a long time, you were in and out of sleep. When I left, you were dozing.

Love you!! xo Jen

P.S.
Johnny's Room Update:
Lumber was delivered today...the foundation post things were done a few days ago so the framing is about to get started on your new area. It's so exciting!!! Your almost home : )

December 27, 2009

Johnny,

Mom and Jackie came to visit and right behind them were Doug, Della, Taylor, Ashley and Allie. Mom said that Della asked you what her name was and you said "Ella"...close enough! You had trouble with the D. Mom said that the respiratory doctor came in and deflated your cuff, that's why you were able to talk. When you saw Allie, you motioned for her to come closer...you waved at her and blew her kisses. You've always taken to Allie, since she was a baby. Mom was wondering if you remembered her or if you saw Jackie as a little girl in her. Either way, you were precious!

Mom said that your ankles weren't propped up and were swollen when she got there, you weren't complaining but she propped them up anyway.

When everyone left, you were sound asleep.

Love you!! xo Jen

December 26, 2009

Johnny,

Physical therapy came in today and put you on the tilt board. While up there, they took your blood pressure and it remained good. Then they put you in the wheel chair and took your blood pressure and it remained good. The nurse said you did really good. You slept for most of the day after that.

Love you!! xo Jen

P.S. Sorry it's been a while since I updated the blog....my internet hasn't been working but I'm able to update today because a friend brought me her laptop w/ wireless anywhere internet...pretty cool!

December 25, 2009

Johnny,

CHRISTMAS DAY!!!

It's Christmas morning and I think we all feel your absence. Jackie and Cody woke up and we opened gifts. You got Jackie a beautiful silver heart necklace that she can put a picture of the both of you in. She really loved it! You also got her another necklace that says I Love You on it. You got her some clothes and shoes and "girl stuff". She had a great Christmas Johnny....but, you were missed : (

After Christmas lunch, mom, Jackie and I headed to the hospital to see you. You opened the gifts we got you with Jackie's help. You seem very sleepy...lethargic. We think it's because they have the cuff on your trach inflated. Your unable to talk or even breath out of your mouth. I think it must make you tired.

Dad and Diana came to see you early this morning and Dad said that they had a good visit. Diana brought you some presents, a pair of sleep pants and some really nice soft socks.

Jessica's church made you a prayer quilt and when we got there, you were using it.

Buddy and his son came up to see you while Dad and Diana were there. You had a lot of visitors today, it's no wonder you were sleepy when we got there.

Take Care Johnny! Love you!! xo Jen

December 24, 2009

Johnny,

It's Christmas Eve...

You had a test for blood clots today at 1pm. The test came back negative...they found no blood clots. Mom shaved you today. Valerie came to visit. You slept most of the day.

Mom said that you got a new bed today, it's a air pulsating bed that blows beads around on the inside. It's going to do wonders for your bed sore. It has an adjustable temperature on it.

Love you!! xo Jen

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

December 23, 2009

Johnny,

Ambulance arrived to pick you up at Traymore at 6:30am
You arrived at Texas Institute of Surgery at 7:30am
Your surgery started at 9:00am
Your surgery was over at 10:15am
You were in recover for about 2 hours and then the ambulance was called
You left the surgery center at 12:50pm and arrived at Baylor a little after 1pm

Mom, Jackie and I saw you before you surgery and you were calm. You were complaining a little about the light being bright, you wanted us to turn it off. The anesthesiologist got you all IV'd up and rolled you into surgery. I was really
impressed at how together they were. Mom, Jackie and I were in the cafeteria when Dad and Diana arrived. Mom and I had a bet about how long the surgery would be. She said an hour. I said an hour per leg. It took an hour and 15 minutes. When we got buzzed (they gave us a beeper) that you were out of surgery, the doctor came out to talk to us and he was grinning from ear to ear. He said the surgery went well. It was a success! He said that he didn't cast your feet because he was able to release the tendons enough that you didn't need the casts to hold the position. I am so excited to see you progress!!

When you arrived at Baylor, they weighed you and you gained some weight : ) You weigh 114.3 lbs. Have you been sneaking some midnight snacks? Ha! Jackie and I left after you got some what settled in. Mom, Dad and Diana stayed. And then eventually it was just mom. I'm not sure what time she left but she sent me an email because her phone was on the charger...here it is:

Johnny is all settled in. I went by Traymore and got a ton of meds. I
couldn't believe how many different ones there are for anxiety and insomnia.
When I left the nurse was turning him and was going to give him a bed bath,
etc. He watched a little of Wyatt Earp and then lost interest.
Tell Cody thanks for helping out today. I really appreciate all the great
work he did around here this last week. He is so special to me!!
I am charging my phone now so talk to you tomorrow! Goodnight Peanut -
Granny loves you.
Oh yeah, Cody and Jackie are cute too..............

Mom is talking about the work Cody's been doing to get ready for the room add on. They came out a few days ago and poured the .... I can't remember what they are called ... for the foundation. Anyway, they are getting started and it won't be long until you have a room to come home to that will be comfortable for you and have everything that you need.

Want to hear some Mickey and Jennifer trivia...
20 years ago today at around 10pm, Mickey and I met.

Love you Johnny! You did really good today!! xo Jen

December 22, 2009

Johnny,

Well, tomorrow is your big day. I came to visit you today and even before I walked in I could hear you moaning from the hallway. I'm not sure what you had to say but when I came in you stopped. I said my hellos and then I asked you if you wanted to eat. You said "eat". So, I fed you some blueberry with apples and some Dr. Pepper. You did really good with the food and ate it pretty quick but you kept spitting out the coke. I tried several times but gave up. Next we worked on exercising your arms and legs. You complained the whole time! I have to say it was a real issue for me to lean over the bed and although you got a good work out, I'm not sure it was as thorough as mom gives you. It wore us both out! You fell asleep pretty quick afterwards. I started packing up your room...I didn't want mom to have to do it by herself. I know I interrupted your sleeping because you kept opening your eyes to see what I was doing. It took me 5 trips to the car to carry all your stuff out. Now tell me, how does one person collect so much stuff? When I finally got everything loaded, I had to rest so I read to you the Christmas cards that Aunt Donna and Leroy sent you. You were so sweet, Aunt Donna's card played music and I read you the card and we played the music and then you took the card up to your lips and kissed it. I had my camera so I asked you to do it again so I could take a picture and you did. When I read Leroy's to you, you held it and stared at it and then gave it a kiss too. I love how sweet you are! Well, get some rest...you have a big day tomorrow.

Love you!! xo Jen





Monday, December 21, 2009

December 21, 2009

Johnny,

Well, you are all set for you surgery on Wednesday. We don't have a time yet but everything is in place. You have no idea what's going to happen to you but it's really going to help speed your recovery along. Tomorrow should be your last night at Traymore. They have been really good to you. I know they are going to miss you!

Love you!! xo Jen

P.S. Mickey and I went to the doctor today and our baby is 2 inches long. Isn't that cool! The baby was dancing around in my belly like it was doing water ballet. My doctor said that the baby is doing really good and the chance for miscarriage at this stage is very slim. I think I told you that there is a clot in my uterus near the baby and it was something to be concerned about but the bigger the baby gets the less chance of the clot effect things. So, this is a good thing and we are on cloud nine!!

December 20, 2009

Johnny,

Today was pretty much the same as previous days, except....

Mom has been trying different foods with you to see what you like. She said that she got you some scrambled eggs to try. She would get a bite, dip it in ketchup, and feed you. She said that you did good and seemed to enjoy them. She took the red cap off your trach just as you started to cough. She said she was dodging egg bullets because they were shooting out of your trach. I laughed so hard when she told me that story. I pictured her taking cover while you pelted her with ketchup ladled egg pellets. Ha!

Love you!! xo Jen

December 19, 2009

Johnny,

Today was our annual girls only Neiman Marcus luncheon. Jackie was excited and her hair looked beautiful! Wouldn't you know it's the one day I leave the house without my camera. We did get a group photo with Santa. I really felt weird about going, with you being where you are. I know it doesn't make sense, it's not even something you've ever done with us....cause your a boy : ) I think it's just having a good time that makes me feel guilty.

Jackie went home with Diana after our lunch and I headed to see you. Mom had you in the chair when I got there and you were doing some arm exercises. She gave you the magnetic letters and you pointed randomly at letters. You weren't in the mood. I kept trying to get you to say baby but you wouldn't. Finally I asked you where was my baby and you pointed to my stomach. I feel sure you understand that I'm pregnant. We had the aids put you back in bed because you were exhausted. When mom and I left, you were zoned out. You had a pretty hard day. Mom said that you attended a Christmas party early and listened to a preacher preach and the choir sing. Mom said you moaned and groaned the whole time. I wonder what you were thinking?

Love you!! xo Jen

December 18, 2009

Johnny,

Mom had meetings with contractors today on the construction of your new room. It's going to be really nice when it's finished. Mom's making sure it has everything you need to be comfortable while you recover.

Dad stayed with you all day today. He said that y'all did exercises and then you ate. He said that you groaned a lot but he said that he didn't think you were in any pain.

Love you!! xo Jen

Thursday, December 17, 2009

December 17, 2009

Johnny,

Well, you are all set for your surgery on the 23rd.

Mom said that she worked your arms and legs today. You ate off the lunch tray today...potatoes, cake icing, green beans, and cod which you quickly spit out. Later this afternoon you had apple and blueberries which you love! Mom said that she discovered your IV had come completely out of your hand because you were leaking IV fluid all over your bed. They decided to give you the last two doses of antibiotics through injection.

Buddy came to visit you today. Mom said he takes charge just like one of the family. He is part of the family...you really have some catching up to do with him. He's taking really good care of Abby, he said she's fit right in.

Mom said you groaned all day long, every exhale had a noise attached...we don't think your hurting. Maybe you just like the sound of your voice. Hmmm...

Love you!! xo Jen

December 16, 2009

Johnny,

It's been 6 months since your accident....

When mom came into your room today, you were sleeping. She said you were nearly in a ball but looked very comfortable. So, what did she do? Woke you up!
Mom said all you wanted to do today was sleep. She had the girls put you in your chair and took you to the second floor. she said you stacked checkers, one stack of black and one stack of red. You counted the checkers as you stacked them. Mom got a phone call while you were doing that and you decided to take advantage and went to sleep. Ha!

Okay Johnny, I really don't know what to say about this. Your mother is hysterical! She decided that she was going to put you back in bed...by herself...She lifted you up out of the chair, and turned and put you on the bed. Well, no, it was more like you both fell onto the bed. So, your lying there (at the foot of the bed) and your bottom and your legs are hanging off the side. Luckily for you, she decided to put some pillows along the rail in case your head hit the rail. What do you think? Do you think your head hit the rail? So, you laying there hanging off the bed giving mom a dirty look that you must have really worked on because you don't normally give those and I'm sure she's laughing at herself. She pulls you up, turns you and your finally laying in the bed. Well, after that, you both needed a nap.

I don't know what we're going to do with the lady! She does keep me laughing though!!

Love you!! xo Jen

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

December 15, 2009

Johnny,

I came into your room this morning and you were sleeping. I woke you up and said hi and you said hi and then went back to sleep. I turned on some Christmas music and sat down next to your bed. The lady came in to do an EKG on you. You did not like her putting the cold probes on you but, you did good. While she was doing the test, Dr. Probies nurse came in and we discussed your bottom and your incision on your tummy. She said she's going to order some antibiotic ointment for those areas. She told me that mom and I are doing a good job with you. It felt good for her to say that but honestly, we wouldn't want to be doing anything else.

Mickey and I went Christmas shopping for Cody tonight. He wants a 22 hand gun. I just can't wrap my mind around that. Why? What on earth does he need that for? Mickey says it's to shoot at stuff at the deer lease. Okay, I know he's been taught gun safety but I'm still not okay with it. I know if you could, you'd tell me your opinion and I wouldn't like it at all so I'm going to tell myself your on my side about this and you don't think it's a good idea either! Thanks bud...that was some good hashing it out!

Love you!! xo Jen

December 14, 2009

Johnny,

Well, mom finally heard from Baylor and they said no on an early arrival for you. They don't want to send up any red flags for the insurance company. I could scream but it doesn't effect you in anyway so it'll be alright! We were just trying to not have to pay out of pocket to the skilled nursing facility because your coverage for that particular facility has been maxed.

Mom said you did really good today. Tried new food...did your exercises...

I love you! xo Jen

email from Christy:
I just wanted to tell you and Mickey congratulations. I can still remember running into you after I had Kelsie and you telling me that y'all were trying to have a baby. That seems like a lifetime ago, it is wonderful that God's miracles work when we are so focused on other things in our lives. It is a blessing and we are so happy for your family. I know Johnny is excited as he loves children so much. I have been following the blog so closely. I have been interviewing for jobs in the morning, keeping kids in the afternoon to supplement my income and remodeling our house at night. I will be out see Johnny as soon as I am done with my hardwood floors that I am laying. I have to hurry with that as I pulled up all my carpet. Hopefully that will be no later than the end of this week. Please tell him that we love him and continue to pray for his progress that he is making, we are so very proud of him. Let Jackie know that she is doing a great job adjusting and by her grades she is handling everything so well. So proud of her. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you.

Love,
Christy & Kelsie

December 13, 2009

Johnny,

When Jackie and I walked in your room today, John and Aunt Maggie were there. It was really good to see them! Aunt Maggie fed you mac n' cheese and you did really well! She told you a joke and when she got to the punch line, your face changed. You started smiling and without sound, you laughed! Aunt Maggie and I both started tearing up. I keep praying for the day you come back...I know it's any time now! I know it is! After John and Aunt Maggie left, I fed you some pudding, the pink stuff, not sure what it's called but every time you eat that, you aspirate. And today was no different. I had to suction you and suction you and then dump the "junk" cup because it was all pink like it had blood. I didn't want them freakin out after we left thinking you had blood in your lungs...the things I do for you. I also told mom not to buy that stuff and she agreed. I checked your incision on your tummy and it does look a little infected but mom had put ointment and a bandage on it so I didn't mess with it. Your bottom looks pretty bad too but the nurses had treated it as well. They're keeping you propped on your side now so that has got to feel better. Oh, I also did your leg exercises. Jackie was amazed at how limber you are. Had a great visit Johnny! It's always so hard leaving you. I feel for all the patients there that have no visitors. I'm so sorry you have to be there but mom's working on the remodel and you'll be home soon! Love you, love you!! xo Jen

December 12, 2009

Johnny,

Mom said that she was going to have the aids get you up today and put you in the chair but your bottom was too bad. I guess instead of that she decided to feed you all day...ha! You had 3 bites of a milky way, you grabbed a french fry out of her hand and stuffed it in your mouth, she said she gave you some chorrizo (I'm sure I spelled that wrong!) and egg burrito and you spit it out as fast as it went in.
Mom said she worked your arms and legs pretty hard today. Progress!! That's what we're praying for. Keep up the hard work little brother!!

Love you!! xo Jen

Monday, December 14, 2009

December 11, 2009

Johnny,

Well Mom gave you a work out today. She worked your arms and legs, and you didn't like it much at all! She had the aids help her put you in your chair and took you up to the therapy room. No one was there but she was still able to work with you. You pushed beads around on the metal wires...this works your arms and your brain. You have to lift your arms up to move the beads along the wires and you did really good with that. Mom gave you some checkers, the red and black large ones and told you to stack them. That's all the instruction she gave you. You stacked those checkers red, black, red, black...then you got to where you needed a red and you had two blacks real close and a red a little further back. She said she watched you as you reached as far as you could and got that red and put it next on the stack. It's amazing that you decided you wanted to do a pattern and that's what you did! Mom took you down to the dining room to feed you today and there was a piano player and a little girl singing. You enjoyed that. Mom said that you ate really good and she even gave you a half a peanut butter cracker. She said you pushed it over to your teeth so you could chew it. You also crunched on ice which we forget to do with you but it really works your chewing motion.

Mom said that she set up your table with your magnetic letters on them and that you spelled "it's behind me" she asked you what's behind you and you spelt "my behind".
When she got you back to the room and checked things out on your behind, she saw that you have a pretty bad wound. It must have been hurting with all the sitting you were doing in your chair. Mom said that she made a sign for the nurses and aids to keep you off your bottom and either on your left or right side. I can't wait until you can use your voice. I hate to think that your in pain because we don't understand when you try to communicate with us.

Love you!! xo Jen




Thursday, December 10, 2009

December 10, 2009

Johnny,

I came to visit you today. Your room was all moved around. I asked the nurse what happened and she said she had no idea but she really liked it. When I told mom later, she said she did it. Ha! I should have know. OCD...she doesn't think she has it...maybe a little! I fed you and in between each bite, you fell asleep. It took almost an hour to eat about a 1/2 cup of mashed potatoes and about 1/4 cup of diet coke. You did really good though, there was nothing when I suctioned you.

Dr. Thomas came by before I got there and took off your belly bandage and your back bandage. Everything to me looked really good. Your wound was dry and clean. He said that you didn't have to have a bandage on it anymore. He upped your pump too. I think that was why you were so sleepy.

I turned on Christmas music and wrote a note to mom while you slept. You woke up when I left and it was so hard to leave. I hugged you and I don't know where it came from but I started crying and you put your right hand on my left shoulder like you were consoling me. This really sucks Johnny! It really sucks!

I miss you! I love you! xo Jen

December 9, 2009

Johnny,

Mom said she hasn't heard from the insurance company regarding your move. Sure hope we hear something soon. Mom said you did real good today. You ate good and did your exercise. You complained a lot but you did them. Not like she was going to give you a choice though, ha!

I got an email from Aunt Von:
Dearest Jennifer and Jackie and Johnny,

I should be horse-whipped for not writing sooner and I do not have a good excuse, just old age and laziness.

Especially since you, Jennifer, go to all of the trouble of writing the blog and keeping it current so that we might know hundreds of miles away what is happening to Johnny and even the rest of the family.
Thank you so very much for all of your time and effort that goes into it. Thank you is just so insignificant.

Johnny you have a very special sister and a special daughter and also a special Mom that has fought every step of the way for you.

Hey, Jackie those were great grades. Keep up the good work. I am sure your Dad is very proud of you.. Next time you see him give him a big hug from me and his Uncle Don.

Johnny your Uncle Don said to tell you to hurry out of that bed and he will take you fishing like when you were little. Should be a farm pond around somewhere that you know about....Isn't there?

Jennifer tell Johnny we are praying for him each and everyday. I know God has been answering some of our prayers as we can continue to see improvement each day. We just get a mite impatient. All in God's time.

Take care and Love to all of you!
Love and Prayers.....
Aunt Von and Uncle Don

You sure have a lot of fans in your corner! I can't wait for you to read your blog someday!

Love you!! xo Jen

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

December 8, 2009

Johnny,

I had a GREAT visit with you today!

When I got there, you were awake and chewing on your glove. I took it off and asked you what you wanted or needed. I gave you your magnets but you just pushed them around. I asked you if you wanted to eat and you said yes. I said what do you want to eat and you said pudding. So, you got pudding! You chose chocolate pudding. I also gave you some ham. You ate most of the ham and about half the pudding. I gave you a box of Kleenex and showed you how to pull it out of the box and you did really well with that. I would give you a bite and then you would wipe your mouth with the Kleenex. I had you swallow twice in between bites and we also would practise your vowels between bites. When I suctioned you, there was nothing there! Yeah!!

When you were done eating, I shaved you. You kept your eyes closed the whole time but when I was done, I asked you to feel your face and tell me if I missed a spot. You lifted your hand up to your chin and felt your face. I wanted to cry! I love when it's clear that you understand me!

When I was finished shaving you, I moved your bed from the wall so I could get behind your head to shampoo you. I think they must be using something that doesn't wash out on your hair because it looks clean but feels ... well, not so clean. Anyway, I shampooed your hair and spent extra time massaging your head and you just moaned and then took a breath and moaned and took a breath. I think you were really enjoying it.

Next, I wiped your face real good with a warm rag and cleaned your ears - which you hate and your teeth - which you love. I got you all lotioned up and you were out! Sound asleep!

While you were sleeping, your Doctor's nurse came in to visit and she said that you have a UTI. Bummer! I said, no, that's not convenient! You are due to have surgery on the 23rd and it can't be done if you have an infection! I really wanted to scream! She said that she would order you some antibiotics to be used right away and for the next 10-14 days. She said that they would wait to do the pre surgery evaluation and blood work until it's closer to the date of surgery so that hopefully the infection will be gone. She said that in a few days you will be feeling better.
That's when it hit me, you haven't been very active...you've been lethargic...must have been the infection. I really wish you had a way to let us know, we don't always know what to look for.

Your coughing has been very minimal during my visit. I ran out of time and couldn't do your exercises, but I told Diana and she said she would do them for me.

I had such a great visit with you Johnny, listening to Christmas music....it's so peaceful in your room. I was thankful you were sleeping when I left, it always makes me sad to leave when your looking at me.




Love you so much little brother!! xo Jen

P.S. Our secret:

Right before Mickey and I were married, we discovered we were pregnant...with Cody. The doctor said that he was a true miracle because I don't ovulate and pregnancy for me was next to impossible. Well, right after Cody was born, Mickey and I started trying to conceive again. It went on like that for about 10 years or so with us trying fertility drugs, artificial insemination, and all the humiliating tests etc. along the way. We prayed that the Lord would bless us with another child. At some point, we decided that we were content in waiting patiently for our grandchildren. Until....I recently went to the doctor because my lower back on the right side hurt constantly and I had some other female issues I won't bore you with. The doctor sent me for a sonogram and during the procedure, the technician sounded like she saw something. I asked her if she found something. She said yes. I said well, what are you looking at? She said, well, right now I'm looking at a heartbeat. That's right! At 40 (me) and 44 (Mickey) with an 18 year old son, we are starting over. We're pregnant. Our God has a sense of humor!! He has truly blessed us and continues to bless us. The truth is, we prayed for a baby (when we wanted it) we stopped asking (when our time limit was reached)...what we failed to remember, it's God's time! All in His timing! Mickey and I could not be happier! That is, after Mickey got over the fact that his retirement date was kicked back by years! Ha!

Johnny found out right after we did and that's when he kept writing my name. Mom said that for days I was on his mind. When I spend time with him now, I'll ask him where's my baby and he'll point to my tummy.

This pregnancy is a blessing but it does come with some risks...my age being one of them along with some female "stuff". The baby is due in July.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for continuing to pray for Johnny and our family and thank you for sharing in our most recent miracle. God continues to bless!!!

Much love~ Jen

December 7, 2009

Johnny,

Mom was on the phone for most of the defending, pleading and stating your case. You couldn't as for a better advocate!

She keeps telling me that I need to share our secret on the blog...I'm going to come see you tomorrow and I'll ask you what you think. I think she just can't keep a secret, maybe we should see how long she can hold out! ha!

Mom said that when she got there, she fed you....KFC potatoes....if that doesn't fatten you up, I don't know what will.

She said she did your exercises and the whole time you complained. I do not blame you! I hate to exercise too!

See you in the morning. Love you!! xo Jen

Sunday, December 6, 2009

December 6, 2009

Johnny,

Mom and Robert came up to see you today. Mom said that you were congested when she got there and had to suction you. She exercised your legs and worked with you on your vowels. She said you were writing with pen and paper. She said you were awake the whole time they visited. I bet you were beat when they left.

Your friends Buddy and Tammy came by today and took your dog Abby to their house. They have a boxer and another dog so Abby is going to have a lot of fun! Jackie was okay with it, Buddy said she could come visit Abby whenever she wants and they live in Midlothian. They will give her a good home and take great care of her. Buddy said that when you get ready to have her back, she's yours. Your so blessed to have the Brooks as friends!

I hope you had a good day, I'm counting the days until your surgery (seems like that's all I do these days!) I can't wait until your back at Baylor, rehabbing it up! You know you charm the ladies where ever you go!

Love you!! xo Jen

December 5, 2009

Johnny,

Jackie and I came to see you this morning. You were asleep when we walked in and we were very quiet to not wake you up...yes, I said Jackie was quiet. Ha! That's a tough one to believe! But, I was anxious to say hello so I woke you up. You were so sweet! When you saw me, you said hi and then I told you Jackie was hiding in the corner of the room and you moved your eyes around the room until you saw her. I wish so much that you could smile or register your emotions. I know you had a smile for us! I took off your glove and you held my hand.

You were a little congested so I suctioned you. I ended up having to suction you a lot while I was there. You napped on and off for about an hour and a half, and the squirrels were wild outside your window so Jackie occupied her time by taking pictures of them. The birds were very busy too. It was really cold today so I guess the animals were feeling frisky.




You and Jackie watched cartoons and played with your magnet letters.

When we left, you were sleeping soundly.

It's always so hard to leave you. I really don't think you have a concept of time, so that makes it easier!

Love you!! xo Jen

P.S. Aren't secrets fun....Johnny and I know a secret. Or, I should say, Johnny knows my secret and he's not telling - are you Johnny! Love you! Jen

December 4, 2009

Johnny,

I went Christmas shopping today and you weren't very far from my mind. It just doesn't seem right with you being in the hospital. I would love to put a tree up in your room but, I'm not sure how long your going to be there. I'm not sure if your even aware of what month it is, you seem so happy with the things we all take for granted, like eating. That's your favorite thing right now. I guess I'm feeling a little down...I'm going to come see you tomorrow and bring Jackie. She's doing really good. I've been meaning to post her grades:

Science - 91
Math - 90
Reading/ Language arts - 100
JV Treble Choir - 98
Coed Tennis - 99
Social Studies - 95

All A's again! We are so proud of her Johnny and I know you are too!! One of her teachers commented that She has shown improvement, has a positive attitude toward learning and readily contributes to class discussion. Again, very proud of her!!

Cody graduated his EMT class. He is registered for and waiting to take his National Registry test for EMT. He's scheduled to take a paramedic's class in January. You would really be proud of him Johnny and the stories he tells about what he's seen...he's so grown up!

See you tomorrow! Love you!! xo Jen

December 3, 2009

Johnny,

Good news! You had your appointment today and you are scheduled for your surgery on the 23rd. There is a possibility that we can get you in on the 16th if there is a cancellation. The doctor said that he is planning on releasing your muscle further up in the calf to get you more release. Then They will cast your legs. Mom is trying really hard to get you moved to Baylor rehab now...you insurance coverage for Traymore has met it's max so we'll have to pay out of pocket until you move to Baylor. Crazy insurance rules, they'll pay for Baylor but have a limit on the skilled nursing. I will never understand! Anyway, I'm glad you survived your doctors appointment. I know it's very tiring to travel by ambulance.

Love you!! xo Jen

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

December 2, 2009

Johnny,

You had an x-ray done on your lungs yesterday because you've been coughing a lot and have a lot of secretions. Your x-ray showed no pneumonia. The doctor thinks you may have a common cold with allergies. You had physical therapy today and the girls worked your back and legs. They had you setting up in the bed. Mom said that since you don't have pneumonia, she started feeding you again....the nurse thought we might want to hold off until we found out. Also, your appointment for tomorrow was confirmed. You have a 4:15 appointment with the Achilles tendon doctor. Hopefully you will be cleared for surgery pretty quick.

Love you!! xo Jen

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

December 1, 2009

Johnny,

IT'S DECEMBER!!!

My most favorite time of the year!! I am so grateful your more aware of what's going on and your starting to progress! God has surely blessed us with so many miracles this year! I look forward to sitting down with you one day soon and reading over your blog with you. You have come so far!

I came to visit this morning. When I got there, you were very tired. You slept in your bed and I slept in your chair. I'd open my eyes and look at you and you would be looking at me. I would blow you a kiss and you would blow one back. I love the sweet side of you but I would love just once to hear you say...Mom, she's looking at me! It broke my heart to leave you, you seemed like you didn't feel good or something. But, it was raining and I had to get back to Midlothian to pick up Cooper from MDO.

Mom came up as soon as I left, to see you. She said that they had you sitting in a chair today. That's great! You've been in the bed since your surgery and I know how you like to be in the chair. Mom said that you were spelling with your letters and you spelled "how do I eat" So, she explained to you how you are getting your food. Then she said you spelled I ____ Jennifer but she couldn't make out the middle word. She said a little bit later you spelled my name again. I'm so thankful that you remember me!

You have no fever and you are no longer taking antibiotics. Mom said you have an ambulance scheduled to pick you up on Thursday for you Achilles tendon appointment. I'll be praying that the appointment works out in your favor!

Love you!! xo Jen



November 29, 2009

Johnny,

Mom and Sandra came to visit today after church. Mom said that they were doing your exercises and you kept repeating ouch, over and over. Apparently, it didn't make them stop...ha! You have a lot of mucus today and your coughing a lot. Mom said that she had to suction you quite a bit. She fed you KFC mash potatoes and gravy and then you took a nap. Mom also said that your turning your knee in and out. Johnny, that is so great!! Keep up the hard work!!

Love you!! xo Jen

November 28, 2009

Johnny,

Mom & Jackie came to visit you today. They were there most of the day. Mom said that she did your exercises and you were very loose. Jackie filled all the bird feeders outside in the courtyard. She was filling a feeder outside a mans room and looked up and he was smiling at her. I feel for these patients, most of them don't get very many visitors. Mom said that when they were getting ready to go, she told you she was going to my house and you told her you wanted to go. I sure wish you could and I'm waiting for the day!

Love you!! xo Jen


Email from Leroy:
Hi Jennifer,

I am soooooo happy that Johnny's surgery came out ok.
Feels like he is turning a good and happy page!
tell him I said Hello and I love him.
Tell your family Happy Thanksgiving and that our prayers are
with you all out there.

Love you Jennifer,

Leroy

Friday, November 27, 2009

November 27, 2009

Johnny,

It's so hard to believe November is almost gone. My anniversary is coming up...19 years...can you believe it? You were 19 when I got married.

Mom spent the day with you. She said that Dr. Thomas came to visit with and check on you. He's the doctor responsible for managing your pump. When you came out of surgery, they had you at a 125 dosage. Dr. Thomas bumped you up to a 175 dosage. He also checked your incision and said everything looks good. He will take off the bandage next week when he comes back and he will probably bump up the pump. That sounds funny! Bump up the pump. Reminds me of that song...pump up the volume, pump up the volume, pump up the volume, dance - dance ... Your welcome, now that song is stuck in you head...ha!

Mom said that she thinks the pain meds the nurses give you is making you sleepy. Your doing a lot of sleeping. They see you grimace or moan and their feeding you pain meds. They really care about you there and one nurse told mom that your a real gentlemen, she can just tell. She introduced you to her little girl (3 years old) one Saturday when Mickey and I had you out front. You told her little girl hi and then she acted shy. It was really sweet.

Love you Johnny! xo Jen

November 26, 2009

Johnny,

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!

Mom came up to see you pretty early and stayed until I got there around 1:30 pm. She said when she got there your head was straight...you've been keeping it turned to the left. Your left hand was at your waist and your legs were bending a little. She said you ate strawberry applesauce.

When I got there, you were asleep so I sat next to your bed and looked at the Friday sales papers for the crazy shopping day after Thanksgiving. You woke up and pointed for me to come here. You were mumbling something I couldn't tell what you were trying to say so I gave you the magnets and you spelled "I'm hungry". I gave you some of the pumpkin pie I made you and you ate a few bites and then just rolled it around your tongue. I finally wiped it out of the your mouth because you wouldn't swallow it. I gave you some apple sauce and you ate a few bites of it but then you weren't interested. We watched some tv and looked at the sales papers. I put music on for you and we held hands and listened. Eventually you fell asleep and I left...Cody had to do a clinical at the hospital and he was getting off at 7 pm so we could have Thanksgiving dinner. I really wish you could hear all of his ER stories. I know you'd really get a kick out of them and just to see how much he's grown...you'd be proud.

Well, Happy Thanksgiving little brother! xo Jen

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

November 25, 2009

Johnny,

Your dedicated mother spent the night with you last night. She wasn't sure how you would handle the pump in your side and was concerned that you may try to rub it. She said she didn't get a whole lot of sleep but that you did. That's really good! She said that you woke up hungry and kept saying eggs over and over until the eggs came and then you wouldn't eat them. Mom said that she asked you if you wanted some orange juice and then she said want some OJ. She said that you said "o" and then real loud "J". She said it was funny. You drank all the orange juice. You weren't interested in doing much other than sleeping. Mom had to run an errand to another doctors office so Mickey came on his lunch hour to sit with you. He said that your speech therapist came in and you weren't interested in doing anything but she did ask you who was visiting you and you mumbled something so she said for you to write it and you wrote Mickey...the clearest you've written anything so far. Of course Mickey took a picture and he's been telling everyone, Johnny wrote my name. He's very proud of your progress Johnny, we all are. We are all so excited to see how you advance with the pump. Beth your physical therapist said that your left arm is very loose and your left leg is bending a lot better.

Mom got your achilles tendon surgery consultation moved up to December 3rd at 4:15pm. Once the doctor sees you, we will set the appointment for your surgery and the nurse said the doctor would work with us in getting it done before the year is up. That's really good news. Then, Janine with Baylor will get approval for you to be taken there post op. They will do the surgery and then cast your feet and the next day they say you'll be able to stand on them. The doctor that did the pump surgery said that he feels strongly that you will be able to walk soon. I just want to scream, I'm so excited for you!!!



I'll see you tomorrow, after lunch. I made you a pumpkin pie. Love you! xo Jen

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

November 24, 2009

Johnny,

You got off the ambulance this morning like an old pro! That's so sad that you've been in one enough times to have down the routine! You were wheeled into a room right away and didn't waste anytime telling whoever would listen that you were hungry. I asked the nurse if you could have some lemon swabs and she said sure, that'll be fine. Then, we just looked at each other until I said...could you get me some? She said, oh, we don't have any but if you do, feel free to give him some. What? Crazy! You were all set for surgery and they wheeled you into the operating waiting room. Mom let me sit with you. I think she could tell how nervous I was. When I sat down next to you and took your hand, you were sweating all over and moaning a little. I said Johnny are you nervous? You gave me a thumbs up. I said your going to be okay, you'll go to sleep and when you wake up we'll get you something to eat. Not long after that the doctor came in and we were talking about where the pump would go and how skinny you were and he asked me what I thought about putting in a smaller pump and I said, hold on....I can't make that decision. I wanted to scream MOMMA but I didn't, I just went and got her as fast as I could. When I got back, you looked very nervous. I was really wishing they had given you a little something to relax you...maybe it was me that was nervous!

While you were in surgery, we sat in the waiting room for what felt like forever! Mom was Mrs. Timex, looking at her watch and giving us...it's been an hour...updates. Ha! We also could see inside the window through to the surgery office so she would say, oh here comes someone...never mind, it's not the doctor. Truth is, she was nervous too!

Your waiting visitors: Mom, Me, Mickey, Cody, Jackie, Dad, Diana, Robert, Brother Grady, Sandra.

Dr. Koneon came out and said that you did really good and that we could see you in about thirty minutes. By the time we got to your room, you were having your vitals taken and getting all situated. You were waking up from the anesthesia but it was definitely a slow process. To me you looked pale but by the time I left, you looked more like yourself.

Dr. Koneon decided to down size the pump for sure when he got into surgery and saw that you have absolutely no fat on your body. He said he's never seen anyone with so little fat. Hmmm, must suck...kidding! That's just the bitter sister with the other genes!! ha! The pump he put in was 20cc and half the size of the original one. This means that the pump will have to be refilled every 2-3 months instead of the 6 months we were originally told. But, it is the best thing for you. They put the pump on the right side of your belly button and ran the tube around your right side and along side your spine. He thinks he got the tube high enough to effect your arms. The pump sets under the skin like a blanket over a hockey puck, not like saran wrap, so the edges of the edges around the pump have room there. Any kind of rubbing or irritation can possibly move the pump although it is stitched to the fibrous tissue above the muscle. This is a concern and we will have to come up with a solution if you begin to mess with it. You did so good with the surgery, we could certainly feel the prayers that were being lifted up for you!

Shortly after Cody, Jackie and I left, the ambulance came and took you and mom back to Traymore. When I called to check on you, mom said that the nurse was hooking up your feeding tube...I'm sure that'll feel better, to get something in your tummy! I'm not positive, but I think mom is spending the night tonight because she's worried that you might mess with the pump because it's so new and it's starting to bruise. The nurse gave you some pain medication so that'll help you sleep, maybe if mom decides to spend the night, she can sleep too. Maybe I can talk her into spending the night at my house. In any event, you will see her smiling face when you wake up in the morning.

Love you Johnny! I'm so proud of you little brother!! xo Jen

Pictures of your Mary Stiles Visit:
Your ride...

Coming out of the ambulance

Before surgery

After surgery

The installed pump

Monday, November 23, 2009

November 23, 2009

Johnny,

Mom has spent all day with you. I'm sure she feels like I do right now...we have waited so long for you to have the surgery and now that it's here, I'm scared. I know this is the best shot you have at furthering your recovery and I have faith that the right decision was made. I'm just scared...I don't want you to be in pain. You have been through so much Johnny and you deserve this! You deserve for it to go right! You deserve for it to be a success!

I'll be praying for you tonight and tomorrow. I've sent out prayer requests for you. I have faith that your name will be lifted by many. I'll be praying for the doctors and nurses performing your surgery and taking care of you. I'll be praying for the ambulance driver and the paramedics. I'll be praying that your body accepts the foreign materials in you. I'll be praying that your recovery is fast and pain free.

I love you Johnny! xo Jen

Mom said that she took you outside to do some birdwatching today. Then she took you to the 2nd floor for therapy. You ate chocolate pudding and strawberry applesauce.
Mom said that your not running fever so we're ago for surgery tomorrow. Mom also said that she gave you a spiral and pen to draw with and when you were done, you took your pen and stuck it into the spiral...that is absolutely amazing! We take the ability to do these simple tasks for granted! I'm celebrating with you Johnny...you are amazing!

November 22, 2009

Johnny,

Mom came to visit with you after church. She said that Buddy and Stanley had been there to see you. Mom said that you had pudding today and that when she suctioned you she suctioned out cake. Then she found a note from your speech therapist that she had given you cake before mom got there. It sounds like she didn't suction you after she gave you cake...that's not good. With your surgery coming up on Tuesday, we need to prevent you from getting pneumonia. I'm sure mom will address that with her on Monday. Buddy called mom because he was concerned about how cold your room was. I'm praying along with everyone else that you get the surgery on Tuesday and that it's successful! There is no other option!

Love you!! Xo Jen

Sunday, November 22, 2009

November 21, 2009

Johnny,

Mickey and I came to see you today. When we walked in your room, you were sound asleep. I whispered in your ear, Hi Johnny and you eyes opened and you said hi. I took off your glove and got you all situated and then you acted like you wanted to write. I gave you pen and paper but couldn't understand what you were writing so I got your magnets. You spelled, my tummy hurts. I figured out that you were hungry. I'm not sure how true that is because you have a feeding tube but I know you enjoy eating. I fed you a whole jar of blueberries and apples and a whole small jar of turkey and gravy. You did really well because when I suctioned you there was nothing there.

A little later, you spelled, want pants. I said do you want me to put your pants on and you gave a thumbs up. Mickey and I put on your pants and you were ready to go for a walk. I think you associate your pants with the wheelchair and the wheelchair with Mickey and I. Anyway, it was very smart! We took you for a ride all downstairs and then all upstairs. You fell asleep. When we got back to your room, we put you back in bed but you wanted to leave your pants on.


We had a really good visit with you!! xo Jen


Right after we left, Buddy came by to visit. After Buddy left, mom came by. You had visitors all day.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

November 20, 2009

Johnny,

Well, I'm full of information for you today.

Mom is officially retired. While she loved her job very much, she feels like she needs to be with you and help in your recovery and therapy. You know when it comes to mom, once she makes up her mind - that's it! Another story: I was doing something, introducing mom & Robert or something to someone...that parts sketchy. Anyway, I said Mom works and Roberts retarded...what I meant to say is mom works and Roberts retired. Well, mom has teased me about that for years. So, she sent out an email to a few people about her not working and where she could be reached and on it she said I'm officially retarded.... Crazy mother you have! I didn't even try to explain to the list of people she sent that to, they can just think she had a typo! Ha!

Mom said that the lady came out to evaluate you for the touch screen computer. She did approve you for it and said that until you got one she was going to give you a loaner. I'm so excited to check it out! I hope you get the loaner before your surgery on Tuesday!!

Cody had another clinical...he worked at Charlton Hospital in the ER. He was really nervous but he did really good! It's so exciting to hear all the stories of what he saw and did. He had to transport a man to the morgue, he said that was really disturbing and nothing like you see on CSI. I'm so proud of that kid! I know you are too...can't wait until you two can catch up.

Love you!! xo Jen

Email from Leroy:
Hi Jennifer,

As the Holiday season descends upon us rapidly, complete with all the pressures and deep rooted emotions tied to the celebrations, I can't help but pray for you and your family.
The circumstances surrounding Johnny's rehabilitation are an easier pill to swallow for a loving and caring family member such as myself, who finds it difficult to be there emotionally from so far away.
When I log onto Johnny's Blog and have the opportunity and the privilege to be part of his recovery I am overcome with emotion.. Although saddened by his accident I have complete belief in his recovery. Not just because of his obvious determination to come back to us completely but also from the love and support he receives from You, His Mother, His Daughter, His Father and rest of your entire family.

Although most everyone has witnessed incidents and watched stories similar to Johnny's. We never really consider the chance that we could find ourselves as part of the story. When it hits home and you find yourself connected in this way your life has changed instantly. As mine has!

Watching Johnny's dedication to his rehabilitation and his family's resolve, love, determination and attention to every detail that is important to his recovery has inspired me to be a better Husband, Father, Son, Brother, Grandpa, Cousin, Uncle, Nephew, Grandson and Friend!

I am proud of Johnny, you and your Mom and the rest of your family and consider myself lucky to know you and to be part of your family.

I Love You Jennifer. Please give Johnny my Love and tell him that I believe in him and look forward to having a conversation with him one day.

All My Love , your cousin,

Leroy

November 19, 2009

Johnny,

Mom said that you were trying to tell her something today and you were getting frustrated so she gave you the magnets and you spelled, "I needed to" and then you became frustrated, so she gave you the little computer and you typed out "explain to u" and then again, you were getting frustrated so she gave you pen and paper and you wrote "my"...the last word was a guessing game but when mom said the word you gave her a thumbs up. What you were trying to say to her was "I needed to explain to you my needs". Amazing! So, the next challenge was to find out what you needs were. So, she asked you and you picked up the tile that mom had taped a word to...it said thirsty. Mom said, Johnny are you thirsty? You answered with a thumbs up.

This story is funny to me because you could have just said I'm thirsty. Instead you told her you needed to explain your needs. I told Mickey that you would say do not instead of don't ... it's so cool to see you coming back!!

Love you!! Xo Jen

Thursday, November 19, 2009

November 18, 2009

Johnny,

Mom found you a doctor to do the Achilles Tendon surgery that you need. This doctor is in-network but, they are booked until the first of the year. Mom is on the cancellation call list so, we'll see. Baylor Rehab has said that they will accept you back after you have the Baclofen pump and the Achilles Tendon surgeries. They said that they want to make the most out of the rehab days you have left.

Future prayer needs:
Once Johnny has worn out his welcome Rehab wise, my mom is planning on taking him home. She has already purchased a hospital bed and she's got plans to add onto their house and have an area large enough to accommodate Johnny, exercise and rehab type equipment and a restroom/bathing room, large enough to accommodate Johnny and his wheelchair. Please pray with us that insurance provides the equipment needed to continue Johnny's therapy, and that we think of everything in the planning stages of this project...once Johnny's home, it'll be difficult to add something.
Thank you for your prayers : )

Johnny, today mom gave you pudding. Afterwards, you spelled with your magnetic letters, "that was good".

******
I came to see you tonight. When I walked in, you were laying comfy in your bed. It looked like they just got you ready for bed. I cranked up your bed and got you all ready for some pudding. You ate about 6 bites of pudding and about the same in coke. You acted like you weren't interested in the food anymore so I cleaned you up and you grunted loud. I turned around and you were telling me to come here and you were trying to tell me something. I said can you write it and you said yes. Well, I couldn't read what you were writing so I gave you the magnets and it took you about 10 minutes but you spelled "I want some lunch". Well, I am my mothers daughter! I gave you some more. While I was giving you more "lunch", Diana walked in with mashed potatoes and you ate those up...they were still warm! Diana stayed a while and then left and I stayed until 8 pm and we watched some TV until you fell asleep and I snuck out. You looked so peaceful when I left.

Love you!! xo Jen


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

November 17, 2009

Johnny,

Well, Everything looks bright and new in the morning!!! Johnny is scheduled for surgery!!! Praise God!

Mary Shiels Hospital
3515 Howell Street
Dallas, TX 75204

Tuesday - November 24th
9:30 am (lasting 2-3 hours)

After surgery, Johnny will be taken back to Traymore where the pump will be regulated. Once that is done, he will be able to go back to Baylor Rehab and start working on his future!! Praise God, Praise God!!

Thank you everyone for the prayers...

Hear my prayer, O Lord; listen to my cry for mercy. In the day of my trouble I will call to you, for you will answer me. Psalm 86:6-7



***Something else wonderful that happened...Johnny's speech therapist told mom that the state will pay for Johnny to have a touch screen laptop if they feel like he will benefit from it. They will send someone out to evaluate him and then get him set up with one. Isn't that wonderful! He will be able to communicate with us just by touching a screen. We will know for sure his hurts, discomforts, what he needs or wants. I'm thrilled! It's amazing to me how much is available for patients in Johnny's condition...they just don't share the information. I am really pushing my mom (who is an excellent writer) to put together a book or pamphlet with information we've compiled to help others with TBI.

Mom brought you some mashed potatoes and you ate them. She said that you started to fall asleep so she put the potatoes up. You woke up and you kept saying "I", "I", mom said can you spell what your trying to say for me. You said "yes". You spelled "I want to eat". So, no big surprise...she gave you more!

Love you! xo Jen

P.S. This reminds me of when you were little and you would sit in your highchair and bang on the table "una eat", "una eat".....you would say it over and over until you had upset yourself and Mom could never feed you quick enough. By the time she got to you with your food, you were so mad you would sling it off into the floor! Mom said years later she wonders why she didn't just tide you over with a cookie while she made your dinner... ha!

Email:
Hi Jennifer, I finally found your e mail address, I have been following you blog , What a great love you have for your Johnny, I have started my own crusaide of Prayer groups for him, lots of my friends are following the Blog, and we all are sending prayers.
I spend a lot of time reading and crying with you, I admire you a lot.
God Bless you all my Dear.
Jan

I remembered something I wanted to say to you. You mentioned your Mother writing a book to help others, Jennifer, I think you have already done that, your Blog, is simply remarkable, and it will be a testimony to others, you need to do what ever it takes to turn it into a book.
It is the most honest, loving thing I have ever read.
God Bless,
Jan

From Valerie:
AWESOME...FINALLY...SOMETHING TO CELEBRATE!!!

November 16, 2009

Johnny,

Well, today was a hard day! Mom tried all day to get some kind of information about you having surgery tomorrow but had no luck. The girl at the doctor's office was still out and apparently didn't put your surgery on the schedule. We found out that insurance did approve but no body let us know. Mom was really upset. She was visiting with you during her many phone calls and she was crying. You motioned for her to come to you and you took her hand and pulled her to you. She gave you a hug.

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him. Psalm 37:7b

I know your coming back to us, we just have to be patient and trust that God is in control and that He loves you more than we can imagine.

Mom said that you were working with your little computer and she told you to spell cat. You kept balling up your hand and trying to push the right letters and you were getting frustrated...she said you took your thumb and pressed hard C - A - T.
And then you were done. She said it was funny because you knew what you wanted to do you just couldn't get your hand to cooperate. That's why this pump is so important.

Love you Johnny!! xo Jen

Sunday, November 15, 2009

November 15, 2009

Johnny,

When mom came in to see you today, you were sitting up in the chair. Actually you were asleep in the chair and when she walked in you heard her and woke up. You were in the chair for about 2 hours...which is really good! She had the nurse put you back in bed and gave you some chicken noodle dinner and lemon pudding. I'm going to have to try the lemon pudding...you just love it! I am planning on making you a pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving. Your speech therapist said you could have it but not the crust. It's your favorite pie! Mom said that when she walked into your room it was like a meat locker. She wrote a nasty note on the board about your brain injury and how it makes you sweat but that it doesn't mean your hot. If you start sweating they can turn the fan on but they don't need to turn the air conditioner as cold as it will go. She wrote that they are going to end up getting you sick. You go mom! She would freeze her butt off before she told anyone that they made her uncomfortable but watch out if you mess with her kids! Mom said that y'all watched the cowboys together. She said that Romo was sacked so many times he was probably embarrassed. I wondered why I kept hearing Mickey yell at the TV. Mom said that you wrote your name a couple of times with pen & paper but that you weren't interested in typing or spelling with the magnetic letters. I bet you were tired after the day you had yesterday! We are still praying that the insurance gives approval before Tuesday for you to get the pump...I'm not sure when the next appointment will be if we miss that one. I'm trusting in God to work it all out for us.
Love you!! Xo Jen

P.S. Do you remember when we were kids and we would stand up in the back seat of mom's car and just sing and sway down the road. We loved the song "boney fingers". It went like this: You work your fingers to the bone, what do you get, boney fingers, boney fingers. Driving on those windy roads, griping the seat and each other leaning into the curves singing that song. We were so cute!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

November 14, 2009

Johnny,

Mickey, Jackie and I came to see you this afternoon. You were having therapy with your OT. It was the first time this lady has worked with you and I know you were feeling like I was...it's like you have to train the new people every time. I wanted to say...STOP! Just let me do it!!! After your therapy was over, I gave you pudding and coke at your request. I tinted the pudding blue and after you ate, I suctioned you...no blue! That's great! Mickey was dying to take you outside, it was so pretty today. We got your sweat pants on you and got you in the chair and headed out back. The last time we went out back, I got ate up with mosquitoes...through my shirt and on my back...isn't that an odd place to get bit. Anyway, I was worried that I might have the same fate but Mickey assured me that it would be fine. Don't tell him this, but he was right! We took you outside and you and Mickey pointed out doves and then a lonely squirrel came out to taunt us...I would get close enough to focus the camera and then off he'd go!




When we went inside, I asked you if you wanted to go out front or back to bed. You said out front. We found a shady area (not that hard to do, the trees are huge). Jackie started climbing the tree and chasing these two squirrels. You were very alert watching her. It was really sweet.



Jackie took a few Daddy breaks in between climbing the tree and chasing the squirrels.



After a while, Mickey told me that he thought you were ready to go inside. So, I told Jackie to get out of the tree so we could go inside. She didn't listen to me. So, Mickey told her, "Jackie your daddy is ready to go inside, come on". Well, you were listening because you pointed at her and did your finger in the come here motion. I wanted to laugh, it was funny...but why was it funny, you are her daddy! I think that I'm just so thrilled with every single little thing you do. I know your in there and I know it's just a matter of time! I have faith! Which leads me to the next story...the nurses aid you had today is precious! I don't remember her name but she is so good to you!! She told me today that she is so proud of you. She has a grandson that is 18 now but had an accident when he was 14 and it was a traumatic brain injury. He's 18 years old but mentally he is compared to a 7 month old. She said that he is the happiest boy but that they are unable to communicate with him. She said that her family would give anything to be able to communicate with him the way that you communicate with us. I was sad for her and it made me realize just how common TBI is and how many times I've taken my own brain for granted. I know Cody's had several concussions through sports and just being a boy and I never even knew that TBI could happen to him. With Thanksgiving coming up sooner than we think, I just want to say that I'm so thankful that the Lord spared you and that no matter how hard the climb for you, I will be there every step of the way. I am so very proud of you and if this accident of yours has taught me anything, it's how much I love you and what's really important.

Love you so much little brother!! xo Jen

Email from Valerie:
I know everyone is expressing their appreciation for you keeping us updated with the blog. I love your stories and your details. I just wanted to share with you that I can't sleep and I'm sitting at my computer doing my daily "Johnny blog" and those pictures of Johnny with Jackie are priceless along with the story of him pointing at her. It makes me cry! Jenn, he has come so far and he couldn't have done it without your support. You and Nancy (and I'm sure others) have cared for him in a way that most families wouldn't or couldn't! It makes me not only love Johnny more but you and Nancy for giving up everything to take care of him!

I love you,
Valerie

November 13, 2009

Johnny,

We still haven't heard from the insurance company regarding surgery for Tuesday. The lady at the doctor's office that helps to set up these things took today off...How dare she have a life! Does she not understand what you've been through?

You didn't have a very good day today. You didn't feel like writing or talking. You complained about your left arm a lot. Mom put your splint cast on for an hour thinking you'd sleep with it on but you just picked at it and moaned. You would point at mom and then with your point finger, tell her to come to you. Then you'd point to the cast - you were telling her to take it off. You are clever!

Mom said you had apple sauce with blue berries - you liked it very much. You also worked on your vowels.

Jackie had a friend spend the night tonight. I'm sure it'll be a long night!

Love you!! XO Jen

Email from Valerie:
Hey Jenn! Will you please tell Johnny I said Hi! I've been sick with what seemed to be sinuses, then a cold...finally went to the doctor today after 4-6 weeks of this mess. I hope to be well next week to come see him. I love reading the updates and almost spit my coke out when I read the jellybean story...tooooooooooooooooooooo funny!!!

Tell Jackie Smack Hi

Thursday, November 12, 2009

November 12, 2009

Johnny,

Cody and I came to see you this morning and when we walked in to your room we were greeted with a sign from Karen. She shared with us what you had for breakfast. They tinted your food green and when they suctioned you, there was no green!! Great job! When Cody and I came to your bed, the red cap from your trach was at your feet. Apparently you had a really productive cough and it flew right off. The nurse mentioned to mom that this could mean you are becoming closer to the point where you don't need the trach. I know that'll make you happy!

I don't know if anyone caught this in the previous paragrah, but they tinted your eggs green. Someone has a Dr. Seuss sense of humor!

Cody and I talked to you and wrote with you and worked on your computer with you...then we decided to take you for a walk around the grounds. We got you in the wheel chair and all situated and headed down the hall when we ran into your PT/OT, Beth and Allie. They were coming to do therapy. Since you were in your chair, you were able to go to the second floor therapy room where you stacked and unstacked cones, did some stretching and fished marbles out of putty and then put them back in. You did really good and seemed to enjoy it! I know you enjoyed being out of the bed for a while.
Stacking and unstacking cones:



Stretching with bands:



Removing marbles from putty:





Putting marbles back in putty:



When Cody and I got you back to your bed, you were wore out! We got you all comfy and you fell asleep. Cody and I had to leave but mom was on her way up there.

Mom said she gave you some bananas and you said more after each bite. I know your ready to eat, nearly 6 months on a feeding tube can't be fun! Mom said you also had some Dr. Pepper. I wonder how you'd do on mom's ice tea??? You remember how delicious it is, don't you? Isn't it funny how the most simple things taste better when mom makes them.

Mom said that she was across the room and you motioned for her to come here. She asked you what you needed and you pointed to the magazine she had layed there for you to look at, thinking you could scoot the pages over with the hand. You wanted mom to turn the pages for you. Such a brat!! You have no trouble getting what you want, huh?

Love you!! XO Jen