Friday, September 30, 2005

Please Pray

Hello all—

Quick update to the last blog.  Kari woke up again around 4:30 and has been yelling out a mix of words and sounds constantly since.  Most of what she says doesn’t make sense and most of it is just a mix of syllables, not actual words.  The only words that she says consistently are “help me.”  The nurse and respiratory therapist came in to check her vitals, which all look good, so they are calling her main doctor to see how we should proceed.  Thank you for praying at this time.

It’s about 8:30 now, and Kari is still not able to think or speak clearly.  Her hands, feet and shoulder are also swollen.  Vital signs look good, but she is still yelling out words and syllables every few minutes.


Update 9/29

Hello All—

I was just talking with my friend Nathan on the phone before I started writing this and when I told him that I was (finally) going to do another blog update, he joked that I would have to start it by writing “I apologize that I haven’t done an update in a while, but…”  So………I apologize that I haven’t done an update in a while, and I know that this one will be lengthy, but it’s been a really tough week.  I’ll start with the good news though.  Our outing on Friday went well, and Kari got her first opportunity to drive around in a public place.  The movie theater we went to was in a mall, and she did the ramps and elevators by herself most of the time.  It was very scary for her at times, but we made it.  She had a pretty good crash today though, when she accidentally blew into her straw instead of inhaling and she accelerated into a wall in the hallway.  Her toes didn’t seem to be hurt, but it scared her a bit.  Overall though, she’s getting pretty good at driving.  She’s using her emergency kill switch less and can go faster through tight spaces.  She even drove outside down a curvy ramp and around a fountain.  I’ll be putting up a few video clips of Kari driving on the website soon and also a bunch of pictures that I’ve taken of all the people that work with Kari at Craig.  This past weekend was also a lot of fun with Kari’s brother and sister out here.  John and Cyndi and I took a powerchair out for some test driving (a little off-roading too!) and Dustin and his kids all got a chance to see what it was like too.  Kids are so adaptable to these kinds of situations.  Colton, Sierra, and Savannah took everything in stride and thought the powerchairs were way cool (which they are!)  Health wise, Kari’s condition looks good and Kari is allowed to take her collar off most of the time now.  In PT and OT, Kari has shown a lot of determination when she is able to stay awake with all the medicine she is taking.  We also ordered her wheelchair today, which looks like it will be totally covered by insurance.  

Like I said, though, it’s been a rough week; well, really the last two weeks have been bad—probably the hardest for me and the most painful for Kari since the accident.  Since the last update, Kari’s has been in constant pain.  Her medications work sometimes for an hour or two, taking the edge off and making it bearable for her, but then attacks of pain come on so quick and strong that they overwhelm her.  Her spasms in her arms, neck and jaw are also getting much worse.  When I put my hand on her neck, her muscles are so tight that they feel like bones.  Spasms can come on so strong that it is difficult for me to hold her arms down if I don’t have a good grip or position.  Dr. Balazy has increased her doses of neurontin and baclofen, for nerve pain and spasms respectively, but it hasn’t seemed to help yet.  We’ve heard from some people that when you get the collar off it can lead to increased spasms.  Last night, I stayed at the hospital because her spasms were so bad that she would wake up every 20-30 minutes screaming, most of the time not really making any sense with what she said.  She has needed so much attention too—adjusting her arms, holding her when she spasms, finding her nurses for her pain meds, scratching her face, etc., that I haven’t been able to get a lot of things done and I’m starting to feel overwhelmed.  Right now she has been having intense spasms in her arms for about the last 6 hours.  I went back to the apartments to eat dinner and take a nap because I didn’t sleep much last night, and when I came back (a little before 10:00pm) Kari was delirious.  She’s been crying “help me, please God, help me, Jesus in heaven help me” for the last 3+ hours a few times every minute.  In between, she’s been yelling out various phrases that don’t make any sense.  Usually she just repeats whatever she heard last with “it hurts me” and some other random words.  I can still get her to tell me who she is and who I am and why we’re here in Colorado, but past that, she can’t make coherent sentences.  Its probably the most worried I’ve been.  I know that her medications have a huge effect on her ability to process, and baclofen can make people confused, but she’s been on these drugs for a while and it’s never been this bad.  One of the things that I’ve been able to hold on to for the past 12 weeks is that Kari is still the same person and we’ve been able to spend some good time together, so this is really stressing me out and trying my patience.  Actually while I’ve been writing the last few sentences, Kari has been still-about 5 minutes-which is the longest all night.  If you’re reading this, please pray that Kari’s muscles would relax and for a clear mind for her so she can rest.  

One of the other reasons why I haven’t written this week is that I’ve been afraid of what I might write.  I’ve been so angry and frustrated with God that I’ve been tempted to write some bad things, maybe to “get back at him” for not helping Kari when she cries out.  When you are all by yourself in this little hospital room, your mind can race a million miles and hour and sometimes our thoughts have spiraled downward.  Thank God for our friends back in Cali that listened to our frustration and prayed and talked with us the last few ways.  Although we don’t have any more understanding of what is happening or how God’s holiness applies to this situation, we’ve been able to get back to a more truthful image and picture of God in our hearts and minds.  If you know me well enough, you know that I like to ask lots of questions and know how everything works.  I have a thirst for understanding.  God has always “made sense” to me and his plan for salvation and everyday living empowerment I have always appreciated for their beauty.  Not being able to understand God at this time has been the most difficult test for me spiritually.  Right now the words that I lean on are just “I am.”  

“I am the LORD and there is no other.” (Isaiah 45.5)

I also wanted to say a few things about the comment I made about Kari and I feeling uncomfortable about being an “inspiration.”  I never meant to make the impression that I didn’t appreciate people saying that.  We do get a sense of greater purpose when we hear people say that this whole thing has caused them to go deeper with their spirituality.  I guess the best way to say things is that we don’t feel that different from anybody else.  We don’t really have any choice but to go forward.  You have to because the other choice is death.  We still get angry, we still get frustrated.  We have had our times of questioning God and wondering if he still cares or if he is even listening.  “It just plain sucks,” Kari told a friend on the phone the other day.  We aren’t really doing anything special—just trying to keep going. What else can you do?  I used to wonder how I’d handle something like this, and weather I’d be able to make it through something really hard.  Now I know I can’t on my own, so we just rely on God, no matter how much it doesn’t make sense.  That’s all anybody could do.  

“Will the Lord spurn forever, and never again be favorable? Has his steadfast love ceased forever? Are his promises at an end for all time? Has God forgotten to be gracious? Has he in anger shut up his compassion?" Selah and I say, "It is my grief that the right hand of the Most High has changed." I will call to mind the deeds of the LORD; I will remember your wonders of old. I will meditate on all your work, and muse on your mighty deeds. Your way, O God, is holy. What god is so great as our God?”  (Psalm 77.7-13)

P.S. Thanks for reading this long entry.  Kari has been asleep and still for an hour and a half.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed.  

Friday, September 23, 2005

Update 9/22

Hello All—

On Tuesday afternoon, one of the nurses suggested to the doctor that Kari try a different kind of narcotic painkiller—a fentanyl patch.  He also upped her doses of neurontin, a medicine for nerve pain and BuSpar, an anti-anxiety drug.  By Wednesday morning, her pain level was down to a 5.  It was the first time in a long time that I had been able to walk into the hospital in the morning and just say hello to Kari without her being in agony from the pain.  We also had our second big meeting with the entire team on Wednesday morning which turned out to be much more enjoyable than I thought.  Everyone was so frustrated with the inability to control Kari’s pain that we were all planning on that being the main focus of the meeting.  Instead it was very encouraging and we were able to focus on all the progress Kari had made:  getting off the vent, being free from infection, getting her appetite back, increasing her time in her wheelchair, and turning the corner on PTSD and anxiety.  Our expected release date is still November 18th.  Kari also got a new wheelchair that she can drive by blowing air into a tube.  It’s pretty cool and a lot less frustrating for Kari than trying to use her arm.  All the functions of the wheel chair can be controlled by how you blow into the tube—they call it “sip n’ puff” here.  They have sip n’ puff cameras, fishing poles, and even guns!! (Well, we won’t be getting a gun, but it’s pretty amazing that they have them.  Although, I’m not sure how safe I feel knowing that they’re out there!)

I wish that were the end of the story, but by 4:00 or so later that day, Kari’s pain had come back and she was basically where she’d been the last few days.  Since then, it doesn’t seem to be as constant, but Kari will have episodes of pain triggered by spasms, bad positioning, or having to be moved that are as bad as any she has had.  She also showed a few signs of having another infection of her GI tract.  Needless to say, this is all very frustrating.  Out of that frustration we both can get angry at God, but somehow, even though my mind doesn’t believe me, I know he’s still there.  I am also getting the sense that there’s something that I need to learn through all of this that I haven’t yet.  Of course to hinge Kari’s healing on learning what we are supposed to learn would be a gross oversimplification, and I’m not really sure what it is that I’m supposed to learn anyways.  Maybe it’s not really learning at all, but the kind of shaping that only happens through experience; a sense of the breadth of experiences that different people have—not so much an understanding, just deepening.  And while I know we have already been changed through all of this, probably for the better, it doesn’t always seem worth it.  Sometimes, too, I feel that understanding and trying to sort this whole thing out isn’t really the point either.  If I could understand it all, that would reveal it to be far too small a thing to be worth all this hardship.  In a way, it’s a lot like how Abraham related to God.  No scripture, official doctrine, churches, inspirational or devotional books, just his people and God.  No real way around the difficult situations, the things that don’t make sense, the things that just plain suck.  The safety net that I’ve always been accustomed to surrounding church and God doesn’t make much sense; here’s to hoping that what God is saying to Kari and I will make sense, in time.

Some other news is that we are going on our second outing tomorrow (Friday) morning to a movie.  Hopefully Kari will be able to make it the whole time without being too uncomfortable.  Also, Kari’s sister Cyndi, her husband John, Kari’s brother Dustin, and his three children Savannah, Sierra, and Colton are all here.  It’s already been a fun time of visiting for both Kari and I.  Also, remember our friend Melissa that I wrote about in the blog about a month ago?  She had another successful surgery and was able to go home from the hospital being able to walk.  The Logan family has been on this rollercoaster since January and I hope and pray that this is the last hill to climb-they definitely need the rest.

P.S.  I just read through this whole entry and I realize that it’s a bit random and not very well organized.  Oh well.  If something doesn’t make sense don’t spend too much time trying to figure it out!

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Update 9/19

Hello All—

I feel like I start every update like this, but I must say a lot has happened since the last time I wrote on Thursday.  For starters, Kari and I went on our first outing on Friday.  It was Kari’s first time in a car since the accident and it turned out to be not as big of a deal for her as she thought.  She was pretty worried about the anxiety and what her reaction would be to being in a motor vehicle, and she was surprised at how easy it was.  We went to a park at Bear Creek with about 15 other people and basically just hung out and had lunch.  There was a lot of space for Kari to practice driving, and she did okay—fine when she wasn’t in as much pain, but she couldn’t do much when she was.  She ended up sleeping through a lot of it, thought because she was on a very high level of pain medicine.  My Uncle Joe came out this weekend too, and it was nice to be able to get out a little with him and go to dinner—definitely a nice break!

The best news to report, though, is that as of this writing, Kari has now been off the ventilator continuously for over 87 hours (since 9:20 Friday morning) and they have removed the machine from her room completely as of Sunday.  It makes transfers and getting ready a lot easier not to have to deal with the portable vent and everything.  The other great part about it is that she wears her “talkie” all the time now and so I don’t have to read her lips anymore.  (Although I did become quite good at it.)  As Kari put it: “I feel human now.”

Even so, it has been hard for us to celebrate this milestone, as Kari’s pain is worsening and the last three days has been unbearable.  The pain medication (oxycodone) that they have been giving her has all but stopped working, and now it even fails to take the edge off the pain.  A few times when doing transfers, Kari’s pain was so high that she simply went into a state of panic—her hair wet from a mixture of sweat and tears.  When nurses come in to give medicine, they usually ask her what her “pain level” is, which is a number Kari gives them from 1, very slight pain, to 10 which is the worst possible pain imaginable.  For the last month her level has never been below 6, for the last few weeks never below 8, and for the last 3 days, never below 9.5—being 10 most of the time.  What her doctor has been saying is that the pain should lessen as she is able to get up and move more, but this week she’s done more of that than ever, and the pain has only gotten worse.  We both feel a bit like we’ve taken a few steps back as far as functionality is concerned (apart from breathing) because even if Kari grits it out through her therapies, all they really do is work on trying to control the pain through things like stretching and massage, both of which are very painful to her.  We are not trying to be ungrateful for her strides with breathing, but as Kari describes it, the pain just “takes over” everything else and is all she can think about.  Equally as frustrating is the fact that Kari cannot tell what position her body is in and often feels like things are pressing, pulling, twisting or being ripped away from her when in reality they are perfectly positioned.  She even feels a fair amount of pain in her legs and other parts of her body that she cannot feel any other sensation.  

To be honest with you, I don’t know “what the deal is,” with all this.  Many of the recent emails we’ve read have said that Kari and I have been an “inspiration.”  I’m thankful for the good that we’ve seen come out of this, but frankly I’m a little uncomfortable with that label.  I in no way want to be cynical or ungrateful about what many of you have written—like I said, I am thankful for the good effects that we’ve seen come of this; most thankful (and excited) when I hear people say that this has brought them closer to God.  I guess what I mean is that we don’t always feel that close to God and sometimes wonder if he hears what we say.  Apparently patience is virtue which I still must acquire.  Today we were sent a card which had many passages that contain God’s promises.  While reading them, we knew that they are still true for us, even though the reality in which we’re in doesn’t seem to agree.  Pray for endurance for us, and especially for Kari.  I know that answers for prayer often take both time and a shape different from what we request.  Also pray that God would reveal his presence; knowing how these things usually work, though, it’s actually a matter of us not being able to see him fully—pray that we’d figure out how to open our eyes.

Before I go, I want to thank anyone who’s reading this for keeping up with us.  If you know me well enough, you know that I “talk to think, and writing on the blog gives me a forum in which to sort out the traffic jam in my head.  I usually don’t know what I’m going to write when I start, and even from the beginning of writing this to now, I feel God helping me sort this out.  Right now I am being reminded of the great hymn “Open my eyes, Lord.”  Many of you have said that it helps you know how to pray.  I think it helps me too.


P.S.  Now that its 1:40, that makes it 88hrs and 20min off the vent (

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Update from Aaron 9/15

Hello All—

Since my last update, Kari has been doing a lot of weaning off the ventilator.  I think I last reported that on Saturday, Kari had done 7hrs 20min off the vent.  On Sunday, she did 8, Monday, 8 ½, Tuesday 10 ½ and today she did 14 ½.  It was only 9 days ago that she went for an hour and 15min, was completely worn out and begging to be put on the ventilator; today she told me that she feels like she can breathe better without the vent and she has to get used to going back on it.  Tomorrow (actually today now) she is supposed to do 18-20 hrs, and then go for 24 on Friday.  If she does 24 okay, they’ll extend it to 48 hrs. Immediately—meaning that by Sunday she could be off the vent.  She has also been able to stay up in her chair 4-7 hours each day.  

I am so proud of how she’s doing, especially since through all the forward progress with the breathing, her shoulder and neck pain has been almost debilitating.  She is in basically constant and extreme pain now, which makes her shake, takes a lot of the strength out of her voice, and zaps her energy.  When they are able to get her pain down, the heavy narcotics she is on usually knock her out pretty good.  She hasn’t really been able to drive this whole week because it is too painful to extend her arm.  The pain is caused by the overworking of her shoulder and bicep muscles which also inflames her tendons.  Because the only muscles in her arms that work are her biceps, they tend to stay contracted, which, if you could imagine continuously flexing a muscle for hour upon hour, you can imagine leads to a lot of pain and inflammation.  Also, her neck has been in a brace for almost two months now, so the muscles affected have become very hard and stiff from lack of movement.  It is sort of a vicious cycle: less movement leads to more pain which leads to less movement.  The good news, though, is that the reverse should be true too, and I have seen more of Kari’s old self—strength, determination, and desire to reverse this cycle and get moving more comfortably.  I have been so proud of my wife with how she has worked so hard this week and has still been graceful in handling her pain.  When her parents left on Tuesday, she cried to them, “I’ll try to get better,” and I could visibly see how much it pained her to see them hurting.  “I’m sad because it just broke their hearts,” she later told me.  

On the spiritual side of things, we’ve noticed a few trends in a lot of the emails that we’ve been getting.  First, there seems to be a large number of children that seem moved to pray for Kari.  We get emails almost daily in which the person writing it tells us that at bedtime or meals their child asks if they can pray for Kari.  Second, a lot of people have been telling us of a sense, message, or word from God that they have gotten regarding us.  All these messages have a very similar theme, and more specifically the same exact word being used all the time.  I don’t want to say what it is, because I want the holy spirit to lead you in your own prayer, but the same words and sense that my father had from the very beginning are the same that keep coming up.  Kari today told me that she has always felt this way too, and although I did not use that one word to describe it right away, it was also the overwhelming sense that I had that first 20 minutes waiting under the car for paramedics to arrive.  As for the fear thing, we had a great prayer time with friends of ours from Cali tonight that dealt with some specifics of spiritual oppression.
Kari and I have accountability partnerships with this couple, and we were able to pray through the cell phone.  What was really great was that Kari could talk, so our conversation was able to go deeper than would have otherwise been possible.

Lastly, in the days right after the accident, Kari told us that she saw angels under the car with us.  At first we assumed that they were there to protect us, but as Kari was able to communicate more in the days to come, she explained to me that they were angles that appeared as children to take her home to God—but that she told them to go away so she could stay here with me.  This week, Kari has seemed more herself, with the same spirit that I have always known her to have.  And even though it hurts me to see her in pain, I am thankful more than ever that we can do this together.

May the grace of God be with you in abundance.


Sunday, September 11, 2005

¿Que Paso?

Hello all—

Yesterday was probably Kari’s most successful day at Craig yet.  Although she still had a lot of shoulder pain, she was able to wean for 7hrs and 20min and was also in her wheelchair for over 6 hrs.  This was both her longest wean and the longest she has ever been able to stay up.  It seems that she’s really turned the corner with her stomach pain and infections too.  Her secretions are less, and she only needed suctioning about every hour, down from about every 20-30 minutes the last 3-4 weeks.  She is now done with the antibiotics for her lung infection, and has a few more days to go on the ones for her stomach.  

We also went outside and drove around the patios at Craig.  Kari couldn’t drive herself because the OT made some bad adjustments to her wheelchair, but hopefully we’ll be able to get it right tomorrow.  It was nice to be outside again—we went and saw a little fish pond (that was very dirty) and saw a turtle too.  It’s always hard to go do stuff, though, as it reminds us of how different life will be.  Lying down in the hospital feels temporary, like you’re going to get better, but being out and about is more of a glimpse of reality.  Still, though, I was thankful for what we were able to do.

Last night, Kari and I also talked a little about the accident.  It was by far the most she’d been able to talk about it since she’s really been conscious.  It still made her panic, but as we talked more, she seemed to be able to handle it.  We went back and read through all the emails that were sent to her in the days following the accident. She was still on all the different church groups’ mailing lists, so she got all the emails that were basically updates on her condition and what had happened.  It was good to go back and read them.  It allowed us to see how much she has improved over time and how right after the accident what our immediate concerns were and how many of them have already been taken care of.  The major requests (other than miraculous healing) that were circling around on the email chains were that Kari would be able to breathe on her own someday, that the insurance would come through for us, that we’d find a good rehab place and that my work would let me stay with her during that time, and that people would keep praying for us and remember us for a long time.  It seems that all those things have happened.  Kari’s website has over 18,000 hits at the moment, and even though it’s slowed down a bit, we still get about 200 hits a day and around 5-10 emails.  Knowing that makes us feel more comfortable about the long term stuff.  Still, I hope that Kari will be physically healed; I can’t imagine anything better than that.


***Remember NYC, DC, #93***

Friday, September 09, 2005

Update from Aaron 9/8. 9/9

Hello All--

I ended up writing this posting over a few days because for some reason the blog wasn’t allowing me to post.

9/8 – 2:00 A.M.
Last night, Kari suddenly started feeling incredibly sleepy and couldn't stay awake.  She was acting like she was on sedation and seemed a bit delirious, but none of her medications had been changed.  Even though her numbers all looked good, she was complaining continuously of not being able to breathe or get enough air.  This lasted for about 24 hours as Kari slept through most of the day, never really waking up nor eating anything, and not being able to keep her eyes open for more than a minute or so.  I was actually getting pretty worried as Kari just didn't seem like herself.  The doctors figured it was all due to anxiety, because there was no other explanation for it.  Her therapy, driving around in her chair, and doing transfers and weight shifts all give Kari a lot of anxiety, but last night and all day today Kari seemed to be completely overwhelmed.  I also wanted to ask you all to pray against fear.  Kari tends to worry a bit, but nothing like she has been, and even the doctors have noticed a change in her over the past 2-3 weeks, primarily since her blood clot.  There is definitely a lot to worry about for her, but pray specifically against the fear of failing.  "What if I can't..." or "What if I don't..." seem to be common phrases for Kari.  Its not that Kari isn’t relying on God, but sometimes her fear can hold her back.  Again, it’s definitely understandable to be afraid when you have very little control of your own body, and relying on God for physical things can be a lot harder than relying on him for spiritual or emotional things.  It can be hard for anybody to break away from seeking approval through performance, and when there’s not a lot you can do…well, you get the point.  Still, though, I am happy to report that all the emails and letters, donations, visits.....and everything else people are doing gives Kari and me a great boost of confidence.  

9/8 –10:00 P.M.
Well, after writing all that, I must say that today was a much better day.  It seems that God is already answering my prayers.  (God moves faster than the internet!)
Kari drove herself all the way outside and generally looked good today.  Pray as always for strength and endurance for her as a few hours of therapy knocks her out pretty good.  Kari also had her trachea tube changed to a smaller size today, which will make it easier for her to talk when she weans from the ventilator.

One more nice piece of news: It seems that someone from the Chicago area is going to donate to us a minivan that is already wheelchair accessible.  It’s older, but it doesn't have very many miles, and even if it isn't something we'll keep forever, it will be great to have one right away.  Modifications can take months to complete.  Well, I thank all of you again for keeping up with and praying for us--this would be impossible alone.  

9/9 –6:00 P.M
Kari weaned for five hours today, which is her longest wean in almost a month and double her longest since she got her blood clot and infections about 3 weeks ago.  The respiratory people were very happy.  She also was able to speak with her “talkie” valve for most of the time.  She seemed to be doing amazingly well when she got nauseated suddenly which kept her from going on a little outing with her OT to an ice cream shop.  The shoulder pain and nausea seem to come in waves very suddenly which pretty much puts her back in bed.  She was a bit bummed, but still happy for feeling alright for 3 straight hours—more than she has in a long time.  Kari’s parents and aunt are here, and she has really enjoyed being with them too.  Hopefully Kari will feel well enough this weekend to go outside and just practice getting around in her chair.  Thanks for keeping up with us.  It always cheers Kari up to read your emails! (


P.S.  I think most of you "got it," but the poem was just me trying to sort out the juxtaposition of the incredible blessings we've received along with the deep sadness.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

A few thoughts on a late night.

I actually wrote this a few weeks ago...not really sure why I feel compelled to share it now, but here it is.


Nobody told me that you two were friends,
Or even that you know each other.
I don’t think that I’ve even
ever seen you both together.

One of you rips, and tears,
and gnaws at my flesh.
You cover my eyes, and heat my breath.
You come in without warning,
and take without asking.

All the while the other is watching
and waiting to catch my eye.
Wanting to show me the beauty of her face
and the depth of his grace.

Do you have come together?
Not one without the other?
Because I’d only invite one of you
if I could.

Better yet, just leave me alone,
and leave me to my simple life.
We were doing just fine
without or your company, your curse, your blessing.

I’ll admit that I don’t know
what you talk about when I’m not there,
or why on many of the gifts I’ve gotten
are written both of your names.
It can’t be that you serve the same master
or that to know one you must know the other.

Isn’t it funny how this dance is danced?
and how his banquet is served.
For my master has prepared for me one of his many rooms,
satisfied my hunger, and quenched my thirst.

And though I have been made anew,
I still beg for the scraps that fall from his table.

Maybe one of you knows the answer to the question:
What is easier for the Son of Man to do?
To say “Your sins are forgiven.”
or “Take up your bed and walk.”

What’s easier isn’t always as important,
or necessary I guess,
But still it’s easier,
than having both of you around.


Saturday, September 03, 2005

A few things....

Hello all--

Kari and I read through some great emails and letters today--thanks for all the encouragement and words of sympathy and wisdom. I think there are some people out there that know about the website, but don't know to check here for updates and news. If people ask you about us, let them know that this is the best place to get news--it really helps us to know that so many of you are following right along with us. (I'll try to keep y'all interested and informed.)

Also, please keep praying extra hard for our friend Melissa and her family who I wrote about in the blog not too long ago. She is back in the hospital and has had some more setbacks and pain. They are hoping to do a somewhat risky surgery, so pray that God protects her body and then restores it.

I'm missing you all--say hi to those that know us when you see them.


Friday, September 02, 2005

9/2 Update from Aaron

Hello All--

Well the Kards for Kari thing was fun for us.  One day we got 35 cards, which was well over half of all the mail for the floor!  I think we had 75 overall for the week, plus we'll probably get a few more tomorrow.  I think it was as much fun to just look and admire our huge stack of mail as it was to read them.  Yesterday I got made fun of by Kari’s therapists because so many of the cards had glitter (some in excessive amounts) that it got all over my clothes.  I told them that glitter is cool in Cali (.  I must admit though, that after reading a combination of about 1000 cards, emails and letters that “message fatigue” can set in from time to time, but Kari has never tired of reading them and they still bring her (and me too) just as much encouragement as they did a month and a half ago.

Kari was able to get up and do as much therapy as she has been since she got here.  She drove around a little and also did a 2 1/2 hour wean off the ventilator during both PT and OT.  Even so, the pain in her shoulders was still extreme and she felt dizzy being up and about so much.  I was very proud of the way she sort of powered through her activities today and pushed herself to get through a full 3 hours in her wheelchair.  Her breathing numbers looked good too.  Overall, the pain in her stomach was less today, although yesterday was very bad so we'll see if they've really got it under control or if it was just a good day.  It seems that we are back on track even if she's not feeling all that great.  Hopefully the long weekend will be a good time to rest, but pray that she doesn't tighten up too much without physical therapy sessions for three days.

We've had a lot of visitors too the last week.  Gene and Daleasha Hall from Oregon, Diana Temple from Illinois, my Dad, his wife Linda, and my brother Dan all left just a few days ago.  My mom is here for the next 5 days and my brother Bryan, his girlfriend Katie, and our friends Janeen and Jose Gutierrez are coming tomorrow.  It’s been a great help having everybody here and we look forward to seeing everybody else who's planning on coming to.  At last count, there are 36 people (all from out of state) that have or will come for multiple-night stays (many who have come 2 or more times) and probably also another 25 or so that have stopped by for a few hours on their way through town.  Kari is always elated to see people when they first get here, so I want to send a big thank you to all that have come.  Well, thanks for keeping up with us on the Blog and on the website, I always like to check how many hits the website has.  When you check here for updates, go through the website and click on the blog link, and that way the counter will get your hit (.  Anyways, in honor of the first week of middle school:

Omg, I’ll ttyl. G2g, so I’ll like cu soon or cul8r.  

ur my bff, right? –Aaron