Monday, May 31, 2010

In honor of my man...

(ben and his buddies)

Today is a day to remember those who
gave their lives for us. Because of them
we have freedom and can safely lay our
heads down on our pillows at night!
The sacrifice that they give blows me away!
I always appreciate what these people
have done for us but until I started
living with a man who serves and gives his
life so humbly for others leaves me in awe!

Ben has been deployed multiple times (between
7-9...trying to remember) and each time
he has gone it has been for others and never
himself! He loves what he does and would not
be doing anything different! Ben is a leader,
challenger, loyal, dedicated, humble, amd most
of all man of God!

Please take the time to thank those who serve
our country not just today but everyday! Also
pray for them!

This video is of what our Ranger boys do! The
words are the Ranger Creed! I am going to be
showing it to Ben today! It is one of my favorites!

Rangers Lead The WAY!!

Pray extra healing prayers for my man today!!

Friday, May 28, 2010

9 months ago...yesterday...

9 months ago today (yesterday) our world headed in a
much different direction then planned!
I am thankful to be still here alive with my man!
We may not be where we thought we would
ever be in life but we are here and making
the best of it!
Jesus has us here for a reason and for that reason
we will move forward by loving Him and each other.
Ben, my love, you are my inspiration to keep going,
fighting and being strong!
I love you with my WHOLE heart!

Love is the greatest feeling,
Love is like a play,
Love is what I feel for you,
Each and every day,
Love is like a smile,
Love is like a song,
Love is a great emotion,
That keeps us going strong,
I love you with my heart,
My body and my soul,
I love the way I keep loving,
Like a love I can't control,
So remember when your eyes meet mine,
I love you with all my heart,
And I have poured my entire soul into you,
Right from the very start.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Braggin rights....

Yes, I get the bragging rights to let ya'll know how proud I am of my man! He is eating 3 meals a day and has not had a tube feeding in over a week! That's right, Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner...and a few snacks in between! He is mainly eating regular food and only some of it has be be chopped or a tad softer! Ben is amazing! It goes to Jesus and all of your prayers!
I think I failed to mention earlier that since Ben has been off his harshest seizure med he has not had any seizures. He had one test since being off his last dose and it was negative!!
Next on the agenda is to do a sleep study and 24 hour seizure monitoring session. He will be taken over to Stanford to do this. It will allow them to see if he is getting a good enough sleep during the night so he has energy for the day tasks. It will also give him the 24 hour seizure monitoring that he needs just to double check that activity!
I take off for GA tomorrow for a lil break! I get to see all of our friends back there and then have the priveledge of going to Ben's old speech therapist wedding! Photos to come!
Please continue to pray for Ben's mind and emotions! He needs mass prayers in this area! Pray that he will be determined to fight on, stay strong, enenmy have no place in his body or mind and that he will be at peace while I am gone knowing that I will come back to him!!
Your prayers are a blessing and they are working!
More Whoohooo God updates to come when I get back!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Roller coaster week and brownies...

God reserves His best medicine for our times of deepest despair.
Be strong and take heart. Psalm 27:14

Be strong He has not failed you in all the past,
And will He go and leave you to sink at last?
No, He said He will hide you beneath His wing,
and sweetly there in safety you then may sing!

We went through fire and water, but You brought
us to a place of abundance! Psalm 66:12

This week has been a rollercoaster! Happy times, sad days, emotional times...I think I have felt it all this week!
Ben has been doing great! There have been a few days that he has not slept well at night which makes him sleepy during the day. It just catches up with him sometimes and what he needs is a good sleep! Most nights he gets about 6-7 hours but others not as much!
On Tuesday and Wednesday we had the great honor of having Ben's commander Nathen and battalion doctor Ethan here...all the way from GA!! It was a blessing to have them here! They have not seen Ben since the end of Jan and were very happy with Ben's progress! Ben showed off of course and before Nathen left on Wed he said the Ranger creed with Ben!! Ben was able to mouth alot of the words with him from memory! So very proud of my man!
Ben continues to eat whatever is put in his mouth! A few things that he has been eating was tri-tip, meatloaf, bbq chicken, potatoe salad, pasta, yogurt, soup, and best of all brownies! He had a brownie last night and I asked if he wanted another and he nodded his head yes! I asked him how many and he showed me 2 fingers! So, of course I gave them to him...3 brownies and a whole carton of apple juice! 3 stinking brownies!! Most foods are just having to be cut up in to small pieces, otherwise he has no restrictions. His fluids are still slightly thickened but he drinks them all out with a straw. When he got here he couldn't barely take a sip out of straw! Give him a carton of milk to hold and drink and he has it down in no time!
He continues to mouth alot of words! This can be frustrating sometimes because I cannot get what he is saying! He has so much to say but still cannot get the voice out! Please pray it comes soon! In the mean time they have him saying words in every therapy! If a stanger were to walk in his room and say hi to Ben, he will mouth hi back! Way to go Ben!
I had a good/emotional chat with Ben's neuropsychologist this past week. She challanges Ben with his problem solving, math, reading, many other things and also monitoring his mood. It is very easy for brain injured patients to get demotivated and depressed so she has been monitoring Ben. He has no signs of that but she feels that he is tapping into the emotional side of things. In discussions with him she has found out that he knows that he is making progress and he is working very hard. She asked him to choose from a list of emotions that she had written down of what he may be feeling. He chose fear and anxiety. She again gave him another list as to what he might be fearful and anxious about and he picked marriage! When she was discussing this with me of course I was emotional and it broke my heart! I can only imagine the feelings that he is going through right now! Probably why would I stick around when he cannot do anything for me! I remind him every day that I am so proud of him, he is working so hard, I love him and all the ways that he is showing me how much he loves me! His doc said for as hard as this is for a wife to deal with she is glad that he is showing these emotions. She said she would be very worried if he was not and it is very common for them to go through this stage! I need the Lord more then ever during this time and so does Ben! I don't take this as a negative (although it is so hard to see and hear) but a step forward in his recovery!
She also said that many patients at Ben's point after the accident have already made their biggest improvements! Ben is beating those odds and still showing signs of recovery in leaps and bounds! Also, so good to hear that she prays for Ben and I on a continual basis! Good to have believers as your doctors and therapists!
So, you can imagine my emotions have been all over the place. I have also been dealing with some health issues that just want to make me ball up and sleep on the couch in Ben's room...and I have! I am starting to feel a little bit better but don't have much energy and am not sleeping all to well!

Prayer requests (have not done this in a bit):
1. Ben's voice to come back (I want to hear what it sounded like)
2. Extra boost in his energy level and better sleep
3. Loosening in his muscles throughout his WHOLE body (head to toes)
4. Eating would contine to improve!
5. Ben' mind, thoughts and emotions would be good and pure...praying against the enemy and the way that he can lie to us!
6. My health...I am pooped out physically and emotionally!
7. Good sleep for me
8. Direction for next steps!
9. Ben's 100% healing...praying that God would speed it up or give Ben a good boost to get there!!

Blessings to you all!

***In the photo above that says Army Rangers, Ben was asked to write what branch of military he was in...he wrote Army. Asked what group...he wrote Rangers. Asked what rank...SFC...he messed up, crossed it out and wrote it next to it (cannot see it!) He did it all on his own with no prompts!! Yea GOD!! Way to go Ben!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Swagger aka wheel chair wagon...

We have been truly blessed in the fact that an organization on the east coast Mobility Freedom, Inc will be donating a new van (I could even choose a color preference and leather or cloth) that is adapted for wheelchairs! What does this mean for us...freedom for Ben and I to do things on our own! Once I am trained then Ben and I can go and do things together. Also, when we are settled back in WA (don't know that time yet) I can take him to all of his outpatient therapies and all the other appointments that we need to get to! The van is ready and we are just waiting on the paperwork to go through!
Did I mention that we are not paying a dime for this van!!! What a blessing from the Lord! HUGE, AMAZING BLESSING!!! I think the Lord has a sence of humor because He knows Ben and I discussed that we would never buy a mini!! I had to humble myself a bit but now I am ready to master driving the mini!
Watch out because we are going to be the party van swaggerin down the road!!

{saw this and had to post in honor of our mini yet to come}

Thursday, May 13, 2010

the writing begins...

This is going to be short because it is late at night and my parents are here, but I had to share! This afternoon Ben's neuorpsych doc came in and told me that she had Ben write out his name, my name and the mood he was in. He wrote out our names and then wrote that his mood was fair. This was great news because we have not had Ben try and write for months! It was quite interesting because someone just posted on the last blog if we had tried this recently?! I didn't even get a chance to do it with Ben before neuro psych got their hands to it! God is obviously ahead of me...!
When Ben got back in bed later this afternoon I wanted to see what he could do for me! I asked him to write his and my name again, I love you and since my mom and dad were here had him write mom and dad!
Can I just say that I am so proud of what he did! This is the clearest he has ever written anything! He did an amazing job! I am praying that it opens up another form of communication with him!
Thank you all for your continued prayers and encouragement! The prayers are working and are a true blessing!!


Monday, May 10, 2010

Pool therapy and more real food...

This week for Ben has been all about pool therapy and more real food! He continues to work so hard in this recovery! When I ask if he feels like he is getting better he nods his head yes! I am so excited to know that he thinks he is getting better too!
The first day that Ben did pool therapy was last Monday. He was a little anxious due to not being able to control his body all on his own...ummm I would be too! He did well though his first time around! Ben's second day was this past Friday. I asked him if he was ready to get in the pool and felt better about it this time and he said yes. My lil Bro Rich was able to get in the pool with him! Ben started out on his back where he did some stretching, kicking and stroking. He did really well and his therapists said he was able to do more than the first time! Ben was told to slap and punch Rich as much as he wanted and Ben took advantage of that!
Some of the foods that Ben has been introduced to this week are: more mashed potatoes, pizza, cubed peaches, turkey sandwich, rosemary diced potatoes, a slice of roast beef, mass amounts of ice cream and some fresh strawberries that I got at a local farmers market! He has also been doing really well drinking out of a straw....he was not able to sip out of straw when he got here!
Ben still continues to mouth ALOT of words with a very soft breathy voice that is hard to hear. One of the most frustrating things for me is that he tries to tell me things and I try to read his lips but I cannot tell what he is saying! He is working hard to get it out and I cannot figure it out...grrrrr!!!
Jesus gave us another wonderful and blessed week this past week! He is faithful to be with us and see us through!!

I am off to get in the pool with Ben!!

Blessings to you all!!

Photos above...sisters visit and lil bro and sis-in-law visit
Photo/video below...Ben in pool therapy with therapist and my brother!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

King of the pizza...

“You better cut the pizza in four pieces because I'm not hungry enough to eat six.”

...and I had all four tonight in honor of a HUGE accomplishment from Ben!! Yes, it was a weakness after working out and having a great day of eating healthy! So why the celebration?? Ben ate 2 whole pieces of pepperoni pizza and largely cut peaches for lunch today!! This is only the second time that he has eaten real food and both times he has done great! Ben went to town on it right away and his speech therapist had to make sure that he didn't get to big of bites in that mouth of his! We asked him if the pizza was better then mashed potatoes and he nodded his head yes. When we then went on to ask him if it was better than the apple sauce and ice cream he had been getting he shrugged his shoulders! Ok, so I even think ice cream is better then pizza!
That is why I celebrated with my own pizza party tonight...all while watching the Biggest Loser with dim light...that way I really couldn't notice how many pieces were missing from the box!
God has a way of showing us that He is still there and watching out for us...I needed that today and this is how He did it:
~Read in a book about His redeeming nature
~Was told by the Fisher House (house I am in) staff lady that she needed to talk to me (I thought I was in trouble) and she gave me gift cards to Target that had been given to the house.
~Ben ate the pizza and peaches
~Good chat with my mom
~Ben mastering the Wii with his oceans game and playing it forever!
~A wonderful snuggle time with my man
~An overall blessed day and feeling the presence of Jesus

Thank you Jesus for blessings us and always being with us!