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Brenen Update

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There are 2 updates today. Here is the first

Good Morning Friends/ Family:

Sorry to missed you guys last night. I have come down with a cold and went to bed early.It is a head cold; and I have tried meds and cannot stop sneezing/ So I'm resting most of today also. Brad is here and will go to Brenen's theraphies with him. Told you guys I can take care of myself, and I do not want Brenen to catch any cold. He might still just because it's that time of the year, but it's not going to be from Mom.

Brenen did have a good day yesterday( I watched mostly from a distance) He was moody but still worked for all his theraphies. For speech he worked again on Yes/ NO questions with cue cards. Once again he knew he is 17, He knows his Mom's name is Joyce, Yes these are stupid questions. All things of a normal teenager.When his therapist was finished with his leson, she mentioned "Mom" working the cards with him, he scowled. I said ask him if he wants Mom to work the card with him , she asked and he quickly went to "NO" My girlfriend Gina was here at the time and we both laughed. And I felt GREAT because that shows me our Brenen is in there trying to get out!! It was pretty cool, promise.

Joe his physical therapist mentioned that as soon as Brenen's right hand is available he wants him in an electric chair that can move with one hand which will give him a sense of idependance. He said it will be interesting at first but I feel Brenen will love it.

In the evening an entire group of therapy dogs came to visit they were beautiful and one even got up on Brenen's bed. We're not certain what he thought, but I for one think he was amazed Mom let a dog up on his bed. Shadow ( our black lab) cannot even go up stairs. LOL

Well I'm headed back to bed & to get some more vitamin C (juice)

Love & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

The Second

Friends/Family:

Big News Brenen has his right cast off. I almost missed it because I slept until 12:30 ( needed it) He did have to have splint put back on for a week or two Dr. Olson was not completely satisfied with the xray.I believe that's going to back up the electric chair for awhile.

Brenen also had his left splint down sized so fingers on both sides are available to him. His skin graft looks really good and the Dr. is " tickled" ( his words) because many times skin grafts need a second or third try before they "take" Praise the Lord!!! The sooner Brenen gets all these casts off the better it is foe rehab because of tightness that sets up in the joints/ muscles.

He has started in the last couple days to pull his feeding down on tiop of himself so we have to watch him quite closly.See Mom is going to get so exercise.

Brad went to all of Brenen's morning therapys with him and will this afernoon also because I do not wish to give Brenen or the therpist my cold. Yuck! I am taking a couple vitamins everyday ( have been since Nov) so hopefully the cold will be short lived. Brad said theraphies went okay, except Brenen went to sleep on his speech.Brad said he was awake again in the night. Going to talk to the doctor about that again soon.

I want to close this with a note to "our Montague Family" Yes it's okay to do the fundraisers. We have been so humbles and Blessed to have so many people care about us and our Brenen. There has always been that saying that "It takes a village to raise a child" And in our community/ school that is so true. I; nor Brad have ever been good at taking anything we have not worked for , but it has been explained to us that this is also helping our community to feel like thay can "DO" something.THANK-YOU for being that type of community/ school; I have afeeling that most communities are not that blessed.We feel so blessed and we have already met people here that do not have the kind of support we have; it makes me sad for them and I want to hug each one I meet. Of course I won't-- for one they might figure out I'm crazy (LOL) And I do not want anyone to catch this foolish cold. I do tell them I will PRAY for them. Funnny; how much easier that is to say as a christain I should feel bad that it it took something as terible as Brenen's accident for me to feel comfortable with saying outloud" I will pray for you" Thank-you Jesus for that bit of growth.

I hope everyone is having a wonderful day; and enjoying getting back on a schedule at your homes.

Love & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

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Wow what a day. I believe Brenen has went through every emotion possible. He started his day out tired, then he worked pretty well, then he was moody, angry, and he finished his afternoon out quite sad.

He has every right to feel these emotions and we would LOVE to be able to fix it for him, but of course we cannot. It is hard to see and we have'nt even gotten to hear him yell, scream or cuss, ( hopefully if that happens, it will be a word Dad taught him or someone from school; not his VERY human Mom's word she has let slip a time or two; LOL)

We are starting to personally work with Brenen on more Yes/ No questions with a buzzer system ( Just until his brain gives back his use of words regularly) This is a long process partly because Brenen thinks it's stupid; can't blame the kid. He gave us few important items today

No--he is not in pain Yes--he knows we're his parents

Yes--he wants to see friends ( email me on this one because it will have to be in small doses) Yes-- he wants to see Holly. No---he is not mad( at least that minute Yes ---he is sad That one broke our hearts; I have never been good at seeing either of our children sad ( prop. why they're both spoiled) it mad me want to fix it for him; but of course I cannot.

Only he and the LORD can do that!

Well I am going to head up to bed; yep in our room. It will be the second night that Brenen will have been without a parent/ brother in his room. It is time. We managed to finally do that @ Devos on DAY 26; so we've improved it's Day 22 here. See four days early. Brad went home today to spend some time with Jared so I gave him my word I would sleep up stairs tonight.Plus I am finally starting to feel better and I want to stay that way.

I helped do Brenen's shower so I need to get out of my wet clothes; it's an interesting project to say the least.

Love & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

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A pretty relaxing day. Brenen worked a bit more today but had his moments where he decided to sleep through part of his speech therapy.

Big brother Jared made it here to sit in on Brenen's afternoon therapies. He seemed to like Jared there a bit better than Mom ( I'm good with that they're good buds )so I went and had a walk over at the Lacks center; they have a really nice 5th floor. Mom needed some exercise; and there's an entire top floor to treak through.

Brenen did seem to answer more questions today, simple things; and then when he was asked anything specific he clamed up. I have not personally asked him too much because I do not want to overwelm him. He really seemed to enjoy having Jared around and jared asked him if he wanted to watch a movie with him this evening. He answered Yes. It was really nice to see them sitting side by side watching a movie. So we had a pretty relaxing evening.

Tomorrow Brenen will have weekend therapists instead of his regular therapists; so we'll see how that goes.

Have a great night.

Love & God Bless; Joyce

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Thanks for continueing to keep us updated BJ. I sincerely do appreciate your efforts on this.

Me too!!

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Thanks for continueing to keep us updated BJ. I sincerely do appreciate your efforts on this.

Me too!!

No problem, glad to do it. Now on to today's update, sound like Brenen can be rather stubborn when he wants to be.

Friends/Family

A pretty relaxing day. Brenen worked a bit more today but had his moments where he decided to sleep through part of his speech therapy.

Big brother Jared made it here to sit in on Brenen's afternoon therapies. He seemed to like Jared there a bit better than Mom ( I'm good with that they're good buds )so I went and had a walk over at the Lacks center; they have a really nice 5th floor. Mom needed some exercise; and there's an entire top floor to treak through.

Brenen did seem to answer more questions today, simple things; and then when he was asked anything specific he clamed up. I have not personally asked him too much because I do not want to overwelm him. He really seemed to enjoy having Jared around and jared asked him if he wanted to watch a movie with him this evening. He answered Yes. It was really nice to see them sitting side by side watching a movie. So we had a pretty relaxing evening.

Tomorrow Brenen will have weekend therapists instead of his regular therapists; so we'll see how that goes.

Have a great night.

Love & God Bless; Joyce

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Another update, sounds like things are better with Brenen's attitude.

Friends/Family

Today went a little better; He still did not wish to do much for his "weekend" speech therapist. His OT " weekend" therapists really got alot out him. He really followed commands for her. and she brought out a red " punching bag" style cushion. Well she was able to get Brenen to punch 1-2-3 times when asked and then stop when she asked also. and then when asked she got him to hold and release a towel when she would do a small amount of tug-a war. He did really well with this and it was great to see him follow commands so well. I think he did well for her because it seemed likea normal workout type activity, I of course plan to mention this to Daniela his normal therapist, she's great so I know she won't take offense. And I will word it carefully.

His normal weekday physical therapist was here today so PT went well. I think Brenen is a little set in his ways already. He does not like change.

Brad was with Brenen for PT and said it seemed to go well; Joe his therapist says his range of motion in his left knee area is slightly improved. This is good news because (I don't remember if I mentioned it before) Brenen has had a bit of an issue with his left knee from the beginning. Brad & I have been in charge of working extra on flexing his left ( on top of what the therapist do during session)We do 100 extra flex's each day. I have a bad habit of comparing the left and right and the right is perfect. It will be really difficult to get as good of range with his left but we'll keep trying.

Brenen's mood seems to be better today and I feel more like myself; ready to handle it even if my young man decides to be stubborn. Brad & I took our eldest Jared out for a late night snak @ Buffalo Wild Wings last night around 10:30 to watch the last of the football game and just to get away. (I thought it might be too late; but we even had to wait for a table, the place was packed) so we kind of a late date night. Our Jared LOVES hot wings so he was happy and the TV's are huge there so the game looked good.

I want to say THANK-YOU to everyone for the prayers for communication; we are so ready for it and I hope the Lord is ready to put that forward. I do know if it is not his will right now I will have to understand but I am going to keep putting it forward because I know he hears all prayers and will not give us more than he can handle. I keep telling Brenen I am ready for anyhting he has to say, anything!! Mad, PO, Sad, Anything , even cussing, swearing would be fine right now.

Brenen is watching an Adam Sandler movie right now and winding down after giving a pretty good day so I going to go hang with him. Everyone have a great night.

Love & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

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Here's today's update.

Family/ Friends

Brenen's day went by really quickly. He did okay in theraphy. He stayed awake all the way through speech and that was a good step. It sounds like he should be able to have a touch of applesause tomorrow. Brenen used to eat "BIG" bowls of homemade applesause at home ( or store bought if the homemade was was gone) So he should be happy to have a taste from home.In the rest of his therapies he worked on mostly the same areas he has been.Nothing too dramatic but he did work.

Right now his father and he have his Ipod messing with it. Brad is picking on Brenen telling him he is going to put some country music on it; so he better get talking so he can protect his tunes. Brad is a little like me in that he might just have a problem putting anything new on the Ipod. So Brenen does not have too much to worry about. I have heard a couple songs that I really am not impressed with and I try to switch it right away. One of Brenens "buds" told me he did't put it on there. Maybe he was trying to protect his friend, normal teenage thing, but I have'nt a clue how to remove the songs so either way I have to wait for Brenen to get it "cleaned up" some. Most of the music is pretty good, classic rock. I think it's cute how the kids act like they found it.

Brenen had his left hand put into a splint today. We are concerned that his fingers are quite swollen on that hand, like small sauages. This really just started over the weekend the doctor was called and does not seem concerned, he expected it with the therapists working fingers that have not been moved for almost 2 months. It is still scary to see and I can't wait until later in the week when Dr. Olson comes for his checkup.

We also has another issue that seemed to start over the weekend. Brenen seems to have a urinary tract infection. Great just what the guy needed, right. They will give us more on this tomorrow. For now he atleast does not have a fever, so we are not too worried yet. We''l keep you updated.

Everyone have a wonderful evening. Talk to you later.

Love & God Bless; Brad Joyce Jared Brenen

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Glad to here he is making progress

Friends/Family It's oficial we have now been at MFB longer than we were in ICU. It is amazing to me because it seems like just yesterday the State Police Officer was at our door telling me about Brenen's accident.

When I look back I can really see how far Brenen has come. And I have started to think about all the people we need to get into contact with. Starting with the gentlemen that were at the accident and moved Brenen because they thought they were going to need to do CPR. THANK-YOU so very much for saving our Brenen. Early on I remember that we had a private message from one or both of them saying they would like to see Brenen in the future. And I do not know where you are with that but we are okay if you'd like to. Please send another private message with your phone number and I'll try to give you an idea of a good time.

There are so many amazing people who helped our son that day and we do not even know their names. The Ambulance staff, the police on scene,the staff at Hackley, the Aero Med people,of course the staff at Devos. So many people that started their prayer chains at churches mer minutes after Brenen's accident. We are so VERY BLESSED to have such a wonderful community, State, Country. Thank-you Lord for all the answered prayers so far on our journey.

Brenen had a pretty good day yesterday, he really worked hard and I felt that he has gone a step up in the last few days on understanding "what" is going on. With that there has been a little issue with him not wanting to do think to he point his is pushing himself off or making moving him a little harder. Mom is ready!! I have never felt lucky to be a little bigger boned than my sisters but I know right now it's good thing becuase I need to be strong to keep up with this young man of ours. I have had a couple pretty good laughs in the last couple days and the staff might think I'm a little crazy. I just like the fact that I am seeing more and more of "our" Brenen and it makes me really happy. I am ready for any and all of his teenage additude. It might get anoying down the road, but for now I'm ready.

There are now a couple of babies and a four year old child in the upstairs therapy room., so the therapists have decided to do some of Brenen's therapies downsatairs where the adults are. He really has been looking at me like."where do you have me Mom??" Those Big Brown Eyes can talk, you just need to read them.

I need to get going; busy day today.

Love & God Bless; Brad, Joyce

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Today's...

Good Evening Family/ Friends

Yesterday late afternoon Brenen had more xrays and Dr. Olson came & removed the last of the pins from Brenen's left hand. It was great news when he said the right hand could now be weight bearing. Yeah!! Joe( PT) said it is time to order Bren's Chair: Looks like we might see it as early as Monday. I believe Brenen will be happy to have a power chair. At first it will be pretty slow going; but I believe Brenen will have me chasing him down to tell him it's time for theraphy. He cannot talk yet and he does have his moments that he goes off to space for awhile so it might be a challege but they feel he is ready for it.( I'm a little nervous can you tell?) The speed will be really turned down at first so it be okay.

Today has been a busy day. Brenen started his day out with half of his normal therapies. Brad & I were happy to see he did well at all of his theraphies. and he is really starting to hold his head up off his collar and move it side to side. All of this will help strengthen his neck muscles.We have been told that Brenen will need to have to relearn how to hold his head up once he gets all his braces off ( 1 more month) So him picking his head up and moving it side to side some is a good thing; a little early training. We were concerned because Brenen did have a minor a neck issue;( of course he has a major back issue but that has been solved by the 2 rods & 14 screws: so that is really stable now) well we understand now that it is a issue if Brenen were to be able to bend his chin all the way to his chest. So 1 more month, and xrays will tell us if he's ready to have the neck/back brace off. Thank-you Lord; shower time is a lot of work.

After therapy we went by Ambu-Van( service that has availablity to move Brenen as he is right now) to Spectrum for a CT Scan on his brain; and after that we headed to Dr. Scarli's office: Neurosurgical. Well we had okay news there: still nothing on the scan to show any major issue other than the shearing issue. and of course only time and Brenen can clear up how big of an issue that is. No new news, but we were able to get some clarification on different brain issues. He really was helpful, but of course could not give us any time table. Brenen's scan looks pretty good; but there are people who have a terrible scan and then bounce right back. Then there are people whose scan look almost perfect and they have real issues. So only God & Brenen have any idea how long our brain issue will be. After this appointment we waited, and waited , and waited and then waited ( over an hour) some more for our return drive back MFB. I guess it was areally busy day for Ambu-Van because they forgot us and then moved our time a bit.

We are going to need to be more assertive next time about the time issue.

Well all of this took so much time it messed up Brenen's feeding schedule so the poor kid is'nt having a very good evening. We're in his room attached to a continous drip, instead of the bolus of food he has been getting. We could have dragged the pole around with us ( over to the Inn or a garden area we've found) but Brenen is pretty tired so he's relaxing watching a snowboarding competetion.

I hope you have all tried to stay warm; when we stepped out it was soooooooo cold!! Yuck!

Take Care & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

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Good day so far today. Brenen has really been with it all morning and he even answered Yes/ No questions for Chelsae. I stepped out of the room and watched from the hall. She and I were both happy with how he did this morning and he even seemed to give her some answers on what he'd like to do this afternoon at his next session with her.

In PT this morning he worked on balance and having his right hand available for weight bearing was nice. He still is not able to do complete weight bearing on his left, but we are able to try for usage of those fingers. And thank-you dear Jesus each finger seems to be able to move. Very slightly at this point but there has been some concern about movement on the left. So it is a huge blessing from the Lord and personally proof that Dr. Olson has a gift because the left hand/arm was quite bad.

OT theraphy was super relaxing for Brenen this morning he realaxed while Daniela reformed his left brace. He needed to beable to bend his fingers but still have support through the wrist/ulna (sp)bone. Then she needed to trim everything smaller because Brenen is using the back of his hand to wipe across his face, etc. We do not need him scratching his face or eyes.

Last evening I had a wonderful honor of reading a bedtime story ( Brenen was already asleep after his long day) to a beautiful little girl named Lydia(I have permission from her Mom to mention this) She is only four and is very scared to be here; and Mom needed to get a shower. And everyone that knows me realizes that I LOVE kids and I really like to spoil little girls esp. doing their hair, etc. She has "traverse myelitis" it is a rare situation where her body "turned" on itself while she had a virus and it has caused her to lose mobility from the neck down. She has already gained back arms and her lower torso area. They need prayers friends so I asked if I could put her out there with "Brenen's" prayer warriors. She said YES please any and all prayers would be wonderful. I believe the Lord put us in each others paths for a reason because I could share with her Mom our Jared's story of being a diabetic @ four and how scaring it was for Jared. Major different issue( diabetic/ traverse myelitis) which I told "Mom" But if she just wanted someone to talk to I'm here. Little Lydia is so smart and impressive. So friends a little extra talk to the Lord for this wonderful little girl would be really appreciated.

I need to get going so I'll talk at you later.

Love & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

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Today's update, note the IH mention at the end :D

Friends/Family

Thank-you so much for being such an AWESOME community. Brad called to tell me that the weather is horrible at home and still the Boosters served 550 breakfasts. I pray that everyone got home safe; and the kids are being safe on those roads. We are so very blessed to have such a caring community. And you have all toched my heart deeply. Brad was really choked up when he called to tell me about the breakfast. He said there were so many people there and he really did not get to talk to everyone he wanted to. He said to tell anyone that he missed thanking for coming that he was sorry to miss talking to you. He also said he hugged the boosters so many times for me; I have an awesome husband.He said he'll tell me more about it when he gets here and that he is bringing a CD so Brenen and I can "see" everyone.I'm not certain if he will get back down here tonight because he barely got back into our home; the snow was going over the hood of the car and he knew not to stop because he would have been shoveling. We have wide open fields around our home so it can be pretty bad at times.

Brenen has a little down time right now. He did well for PT because he had Joe his regular therapist today. Speech and OT went okay but like all teens he seems to give the subsitudes a hard time. After awhile that should improve because he will get used to some of the weekend crew.

During PT for Joe; he was getting pushed a bit harder to move his left arm and he got pretty angry and had some load "voicing" It was his voice; but I'm not certain the word he was working on; I might not really want to know which word. Actually I would even take a little cussing at this point, Brenen has never been one to do that around his parents but I'm sure around "the guys" there were words I would not be pleased to here. and of course as I've mentioned before it's not like his parents can claim he got them "from his friends". We work hard in that area but we're not perfect either.

Brad did get to mention he had different people ask if Brenen can have visitors. The answer is YES; his visiting hours are approx. 4-7 most days.

It might be a good idea to send me a private note or Email me @ JMT8699@aol.com so we do not overweelm him. I know his girlfriend Holly and other friend Bradon were planning on heading this way on Sunday. Now kids; if the weather turns bad, remember Brenen will be here along time; okay.

Brenen & I had a really nice visit from a lady (Jennifer) from Rothbury Community Church yesterday( Kroll's told her about us) It was nice and he seemed to really pay attenttion to her as she explained she had been in an accident in Hart when she was 19 that left her in a wheel chair. She explained how she went on to go to college, drive a car, have a good life, and how she is living for the Lord now. And how she knew that the Lord hadd a plan for her and she is living it.

Then when I talked to Brad last night before bed he metioned another gentleman that would like to meet Brenen ( IH Tractor conection) because he has a similar story. And is living a great life, outdoor, hunter, tractors, the works. Bradd has been collecting serial numbers for 1206 International tractors for years and had met many interesting people this way. So it's amazing how the Lord uses even "Tractor Collectors" to help us when we are going through trails.

I am going to close now and go to Brenen's last therapy for the day; remember Sat/ SUN are a little more laid back.

Love and God Bless; Joyce

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God Bless this family! The love and closeness of them is inspiring! I had a bad wreck 15 years ago and was in the ICU for 10 days. I had three cracked vertabrae and several other broken bones. Luckily, I wasn't paralyzed. My parents visited me twice and picked me up the day I was discharged. This family is right there all the time. That'll help him as much as anything. There's nothing lonelier than laying in a hospital for days by yourself. GODSPEED Brenen and family! Thanks guys for keeping us updated.

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More progress, why does everyone else get cute nurses/staff but me?? :lol:

Friend/Family

I have to say I am quite happy right now. Brenen has a really adorable nurse this evening and she wanted to know if he was in any pain. Well we mentioned she could try to use Brenen's Yes/No Buttons if she'd like.

She worked with Brenen for 10-15 minutes and he anwered many questions for her.No his arm does not hurt. Yes he likes snow mobiling, Yes for snow boarding. Yes he likes pizza ( this one he kept hitting; poor kid I think he thought Melanie was going to get him some. There were some difinate No's also. It was really cool, because he has been really " greedy about this Yes/ No thing all week. The only person he has done well with this is his regular therapist Chelsae. I think we have pattern going they are both beautiful girls. After she walked out; I told him I had one question for him because I thought he would want to do what he wanted to do instead of what I wanted him to do. ( he does'nt like Brad or I to ask questions) He scowled andI asked him " Would you like to watch TV" he looked straight at me and hit Yes quickly. Pretty cool, right!

For a Sunday without most of his regular therapist Brenen a really good day for therapy. He worked real hard which was wonderful to see. He had a young man for his physical therapy that really worked on treating him like a 17 year old and he seemed to like it. For him he actually sat balanced for the longest he has so far.And did great on holding his head high.

Later in the day Brenen had some acupressure done. The therapist was working points that promot speech. We have had this down a couple times now. And he tolerates it really well. I keep talking to the Lord about this speech thing. I know the Lord is working hard with our son and I need to be patcient. And of course we did get a glimpse today of so much, including a way to communicate.

Brad made it back today from our snowy Montague neighborhood. Wow it really sounds terrible. I hope it clears up some for my postal family to deliver mail on Tuesday. The post office is closed on monday; so it is " A DAY AFTER THE HOLIDAY" for all Postal workers,on Tuesday. This is a really hard day for them because there will be three days worth of mail( Sunday, Monday & Tuesday) So if the weather is bad besides it will make for a really bad POSTAL DAY!! So good luck; friends.

I noticed that many of our area churches were closed today; I know how it feels to miss out on the fellowship with your church family. So I will be praying that our Sunday's will be clearer the rest of this Michigan winter.

I hope everyone is safe & warm; and kids remember to really take it easy out on those roads. And PLEASE plan extra time for where ever you are going. And if your headed to school and it looks like your going to be tardy; it's okay. Even if your going to need to " do detention" it's a great place to do your homework and actually have a teacher available if you have a question on your school work.

Love & God Bless \; Brad, Joyce and Jared

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I had a day off from theraphies.Brad had me sleep in. Our friends Paul & Gina stayed in our room with us last night again and I did not even hear them or Brad leave so I guess I really needed it.Then my girlfriend Wendy showed up and we had a wonderrful visit * I even got to catch up on photos of her beautiful grand babies. Big brother Jared slept in Brenen's room with him. So Brad & Jared covered therapies with Brenen.

They both felt Brenen worked well in therapy. And that he really seemed to follow commands really well.

This evening we took Jared & his girlfriend Monica out to dinner. And my parents (Neal & Florence Collins) stayed with Brenen and kept him company & helped with his night time routine. It was a very nice dinner and I am now stuffed, Brad too. We really should not have eatten so much, but it was really good.

When we came back to the room Grandpa said he got to give him "five" two separate times. It was cool to see my father so excited and I know it is a delayed response but it is wonderful when you get Brenen to respond. Brenen has always been close to both his grandfathers so I am happy he had this moment with Brenen. I do wish I could have been a fly on the wall.

I personally had a relaxing day. And Brenen might not have made any steps today but he did have a nice day and hopefully felt how loved he is.

I hope this finds everyone well and enjoying time with their families.

Love & God Bless; Brad & jOyce

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Today Brenen woke up with a fever, it is under control with tynenol. He still has therapy; if his temp. is under 101; well his temp was 100.8. Pretty close but atleast with meds; it came down to 98.6. Dr. is keeping an eye on things; he has some sinus problems at night so I pray his Mom did'nt give him her cold. I doubt it as I have been better for a week and a half. I know you can catch a cold; anywhere. Needless to say he has been a bit tired today, fever seems to kick his tail pretty quick.

Brenen's therapist Joe is not giving him an electric chair; he feels Brenen will do some passive therapy with this gear driven chair that Brenen pushes a handle back and forth to drive the chair. He is using his right hand to do this work. I have something sad to tell you all. Brad & I did not worry too much about the right hand from the beginning of this (Nov 19) Well we should have Remember: there are a couple small areas in Brenen's brain that were injured in the accutaul accident: one of these (pinky nail sized) areas was on his left side: which of course affects your right side: it the area you control your right hand with. He is using the right hand but it is going to take as much therapy as the left hand; maybe more. Sad; right.

Our young Brenen is a very strong minded person and he is really going to need it for the battle he is.

Claybanks Family: You know "the battle belongs to the Lord" keeps running through my brain and I find myself singing it at times when I'm in the halls here.Not too long, I still don't have Patti here to keep me on key.

Brenen normal OT therapist Daniela wasn't here today so he had a completely different therapist. Went okay; I don't know if he was just tired. Or doing the Sub'teacher thing but she was'nt able to get him to do much. I am leaning toward tired, because I'm his Moma and it's my job to stickup for him LOL Remember: he is my baby.

Speech therapy went really well, he worked with Chelsae well; and he has even done some more low "voicing" today. Chelsae served him 1 1/2 oz. of applesause before he got too tired. Relearning to eat/swallow is a huge job.

He also gets to have us serve him ice chips throughout the day now. He seems to really like this. It had to be horrible not to have any real moisture in his mouth for two complete months. And it is so dry in the hospital I and Brad find ourselves drinking tons of water.

Well Brenen is done watching Dirty Jobs; so we are going to go for a spin.

Hope this finds everyone well.

Take care & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

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Once again, thank you for the contuial (sp?) postings of these updates. We all keep him and the family in our prayers!

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Family/Friends

Sorry about not getting a note out yesterday. I was quite hectic. Brenen's therapies went pretty good; he was a bit tired and had started the day out with a fever. He worked good for everyone and even got to have some chocolate pudding.He had his appointment with Dr. Billema so we went on a road trip with "Gene" a really sweetman who has worked here since he was 21 and is now mostly retired. Dr. visit went well and no new surprizes. Dr. Billema is his "leg" doctor so we will not be visiting him for a long time until we figure what "type" of "legs" Brenen will be having.

We got back here around 4:45 and at 6:00 the theraphy dogs were here for a visit. Brenen is still a bit unsure about the dogs; also he was really tired. Brad and my mother got here at 6:45 so I left to go home and spend some time at home with our eldest Jared and to see " Christmas" at our home.

Thank-you again kids for helping Jared decorate the house for Christmas and I am sorry I just was able to see it. When Jared went upstairs to do his homework I sat all the lights out except the trees and the stairwell. It was very peaceful; thank-you so much for being such wonderful friends for our son I cannot even begin toexpress how thankful we are for our son to have so many true friends!!I would LOVE to have all of you over this summer for a barbque when things settle down if you college kids would'nt mind hanging for an evening with us "old" folks!

I have to admit it was quite bitter sweet to be home and I had a difficult hour or so. I could'nt help rethinking the visit from the police officer( still seems like just yesterday)and wishing for a do over. Our Jared helped Mom through it. I have always thought Jared was mature for his age; but Wow what a great youngman. Thank-you Lord.

There was another reason I went home for the evening.(enjoyed my own bed) Brad, I, two of the therapists, Brenen's avocate, and an insurance adjustor all needed to be there for an inspection on what changes wll need to be made at our home for Brenen. We thought it went pretty well but I'll let you know when everyones reports come in.We have been told this can be quite a long process and it's important to get the ball rolling even though Brenen will be here alot longer. Reports, bids, permits, decisions, it is a little overwelming; but we'll manage.

Good things about our home are it's all hardwood floors; the 100 year old openings from room to room are large. Old farm houses have large room so our mainlevel has large enogh rooms for Brenen's new chair. The side entrance will need to be changed, but main level we're pretty good.

Major issue all of our bedroom are on the second floor: We would like Brenen to have our suite we have been working on: plenty of space and there are many options available with this. Plenty of space for him and the buddies (sorry no girls yet) to hang out. The mancave in the basement will no longer work for Brenen, besides he already was asking for the suite this summer. Kind of cute: This summer while we were working on the room Brenen would say; you don't need to finish the floors I'll take it just as is: He even already liked the colors I choose: A warm wheat for the the walls & ceiling with a burnt red on a few main walls. He''l love it. And don't worry about Brad & I : Our room we have right now is already twice the size of many peoples bedrooms.

At 12:00 I arrived back here with the therapist because we are an auto down now.( Brad came to the house this morning with them)And found Brenen really has had abad morning. He has a fever again of 100.6 and he is really whippped with dark circles under his eyes. He seems upset; and I don't beleive it was because I was gone. His Dad was here this morning and I was only gone a few hours, beside his Grandma was with him. And he has always loved both his Grandma's. He is really whipped. I am praying this is a short virus.I'll keep you updated.

Our pastor & her husband came in today and broght in communion. And had aprayer with us. It was really wonderful and made me feel part of our little church. I know one of the first things I am going to when I get home for a little more time is borrow a church key and just sit in the second row and talk to the Lord there in our beautiful church.

I hope this finds everyone well and thank-you all once again for just listening and of course for "talking to the Lord on our be half"

Love & God Bless Brad & Joyce

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I would like to take minute to thank all of my Red Power friends once again. We have received cards from several of you and posting Joyce's Carepage updates on here is really appreciated.

All I can say, for a guy that has not always been patient this has been tough waiting for his brain to come around more. 2 months ago I was sure he would be coming around somewhat quickly because the only damage externally on his head was a two or three stitch cut that never even goose egged.

Brad

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HERE IS THE LATEST UPDATE,SOUNDS PRETTY GOOD

Brenen MFB Day 37

Posted 5 hours ago

Friends/ Family

Ice Cream You Scream we all Scream for Ice Cream. This morning at speech therapy Brenen ate an entire 4 oz tub of applesauce; and then this afternoons session he was served a 4oz tub of ICE CREAM. These are both evening treats at home for Brenen. He really liked it and with the ice cream he was looking for more. The therapist also said he did such a great job of swallowing and taking normal size bites that she is looking to try thicken liquids next. YES! Thank-you Lord. The poor kid hasn't had any more than baby bites for 64 days; this is a huge step!! ( and those bites were just recently) He also did a bit of sounding today; I am still praying for communication and I feel your prayers and am at peace that the Lord is watching over Brenen and knows when the time is right.

Yes; I am back to "the Lord's time is not our time" It is a really hard lesson to learn and it's the item that I talk to him about daily because as you all know I have never been an extremely patient person. And to "give it over to the Lord" is another issue I have always struggled with. I like to fix things, ( middle child issue) so I have been known to try to solve issues myself and then take it to the Lord when I'm really lost. Friends: the smart thing to do is "take it to the Lord first" and he will help you get through it. I cannot help but feel a bit of peace to know that "he" is in control and has a plan. And each and every baby step we are seeing Brenen take is another step in the Lords plan.

Brenen's other therapies went well he is still not feeling well so it's a bit harder for him to do things right now. He seems to be more irritated than usual, last time when he came more " forward" he was like this.( swinging his arms around and sometimes trying to swing toward people who he does not realize are trying to help him) Maybe that is where we are going again; but it just might be the fact that he seems to have a cold/sinus issue going on. I am voting for moving forward.

I will get this post out before everyone heads to bed; if you have ICE CREAM over the weekend give little thought to Brenen; and enjoy every bite.

Love & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

WE ARE GOING TO HAVE ICE CREAM THIS WEEKEND,CAUSE I SAY SO!

TAKE CARE ALL AND HAVE A GOOD ONE!

PAUL

BRAD,HANG IN THERE! AND GOING TO REPEAT SOMETHING I WAS TOLD SEVERAL TIMES THROUGH OUT JANAY'S ORDEAL,"TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!" I KNOW IT IS NOT EASY TO DO UNDER CIRCUMSTANCE :ph34r: BUT YOU JUST GOT TA DO IT!

CONTINUED THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS FOR THE FAMILY ON THIS LONG AND HARD JOURNEY,THAT I WOULD NOT WISH ON ANYONE!

MINE WITH JANAY'S ORDEAL WAS NOTHING COMPARED TO THIS!

PAUL

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Sounds like they had a rough night.

Friends/Family

Well it's early and I have some sad news. Our young man was up all night. He had his normal meds @ 9:00 pm which includes something to calm him down for the night( as he is on meds to stimulate his brain during the day it is needed to calm the brain down for the night) Usually this does the trick but the last few night there has been an increase in him waking up.( it also may have something to do with the fact his brain activity sems to be moving forward) Well last night at 12:30 am he woke -up and would shut his eyes for maybe 2 minutes open them back up for awhile throwing his arms gently back in forth all night long.

My request has been from the beginning if he does not fall back to sleep within 1/2 to 1 hour I want called. Gabby our nurse gave in and called me

@ 1:15 am( thank-you Gabby) he did seem to settle down with me in the room but not enough to fall asleep. So I am blessed that Grandma Collins is still here with me today because I will be looking for a nap later after Dr does her rounds.

I do not like the fact that Brenen has already been sick this week and has dark circles under his eyes. I am praying that Brenen gives in at some point today and takes a long nap. I doubt very much he will do very well in therapy today.

Friends that are planning coming today( later in the afternoon 4:00-7:00; that is fine and I am sure Brenen will enjoy seeing you. But please remember if those roads are bad that Brenen will be here along time; I know your parents will agree with me on this one.

Talk to you guys later; I will try to post later today on how the day went;everyone have awonderful day.

Love & God Bless; Joyce

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Well for a youngman who has not had any sleep the night before he made almost all of his therapies. And actually worked quite well. He worked his new wheelchair with help from the therapist. It is a long battle; he only currently has his right hand available to use. This is quite difficult because as I mentioned in an earlier post he has only limited use of that hand so far.

Brenen had quite a bit of company tonight and he tolerated it really well. And seemed really interested in everyone that came to visit.

One of his best friends: Brandon Doom drove here ( his Mom road along; but she did not wish to drive to GR; smart lady) We adults left for a long walk over to Lack Center to give the guys some "guy time" Brandon said he enjoyed it and felt Brenen was even more alert sinse he and some other buddies came in late December. He let him know he would be back and gave me a big hug ( melted my heart) what a great kid! ( oops; young man)

Brenen is pretty tired now and we most likely will be doing his night time routine early. He hopefully will sleep better tonight; if not Dad's here and it's his turn. Grandpa Collins is here to spend some time with Brenen and steal Grandma so I'm going to close for tonight feeling very blessed to have such wonderful parents. Thank-you Lord.

Love & God Bless; Brad & Joyce

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Brenen MFB Day 39

Posted 9 hours ago

Friends/Family

It has been a nice day here. Brenen had a great night sleep saturday and it must of really helped start the day out well. Brad worked his therapies with him during the morning routine and he worked well in his wheelchair. It is really alot of work for him and it tires him out very quickly. But the effort is improving and he wants to do it so that can be part of the battle completely.

Brenen is now letting the therapist & myself work his fingers gently. Which is a really big step. I cannot believe how far his left hand has come. To someone who did not see it before it most likely looks quite scary but the fact that we have all the fingers and we are getting small movement already is HUGE. Thank-you dear Jesus.

During his last session today Brenen was strated out on an exercise " bike for your arms/hands. We only got a few 5 minute session in on it but it was great to see him workat it. And he so wanted to do it, we did need to hold his finger tips on the handles because Brenen is strugling with holding on.

His therapist was quite happy to see he WANTED to do this exercise and said he will let Daniela know how he seemed to enjoy this. so we should see more of it later next week, I'll keep you posted.

After Brenen's last session today; Grandma & Grandpa Twiss came for a visit. We enjoyed getting to see that and I know Mom Twiss enjoyed when she asked Brenen to put his hand in his. And he di it. This has really been hard on both sets of grandparents as our child have always been close to their grandparents.

Well I'm headed to bed. I just had the privilage to excersie with Karmen ( Lidia's Mom) I brought an excercise tape back when I went home for the home evaluation. She and I at at the small level with exercise so it was fun. We are doing it late at night after the kids go to bed. Should be a good stress reliver.

Good Night & Good Bless: Brad & Joyce

TAKE CARE ALL

PAUL

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Double post I didn't read the thread before I posted.

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