Christine and her family can’t believe they crossed the 6th Month Mark since the accident! It feels a lot more recent than that. What does 6 months mean?
Physically: A coming round of big picture evaluation, especially related to facial reconstruction and vision assessment. Swelling and inflammation will continue to decrease over the course of the next 6 months and be analyzed at the 1 year mark. Carotid arteries will be imaged again soon to assess the partial aneurism and percentage of blood flow. Christine now has hearing support and a possible surgery. Vocal chords still require therapy. Ankles are healing but still need strengthening and therapy. Hopefully, driving will be green-lighted soon so that she can incrementally return to helping with family driving needs. There are 7 possible potential surgeries.
Overall: We are past the season of dramatic battles, wins, and obstacles. Now as support appropriately winds down (people have given so much and they are so grateful!), the needs are greater than the resources. Cognitive fatigue related to TBI (traumatic brain injury) means that her energy and engagement are affected by circumstances and time of day. She feels the gap most in mothering multiple teenagers during their “relational teenage sweet spot” of 6pm-11pm, her most over-tired window. Miraculously, the quality of her cognitive function is almost as she was before the accident. All of us who have gotten to be with her, marvel at her true self presence.
Her gradual return to church gives Christine great joy. She still isn’t able to be fully engaged, but loves worship, loves connecting, loves tracking with the unfolding of the story as we settle into the new building and embrace this new season of community life.
Note to YOU: People writing notes, encouragement, and updates has nourished Christine deeply. Thank you to those of you who have continued to pray and contend for full recovery and healing. Your prayers, Scripture, and stories feel to her like God’s tangible lovingkindness.
Surprising gifts: Christine has heard from friends from her distant past and distant geography and even some people she’s never met. She’s received notes from others who are weak and also dealing with physical challenges. She’s been touched to receive notes from prison and learn that some inmates are praying for her, friends from Church under the Bridge, immigrant friends, children, others who walk in weakness or chronic pain. There is something about these prayers from others who are vulnerable that melts her as they write from their own places of limitations and suffering.
- In the next couple of months Christine might be facing new dramatic decisions related to the big picture and surgeries. This next week she will have a CAT scan that will determine the status of her carotid arteries. Please pray for full healing and flow. Please pray that the next round of dental work will address facial reconstruction concerns.
- Grace and bonding As Cliff, Brendan, Cormac, Skye, and Bronwyn enter this next stage of new normal. Continued healing of hearts, reassurance when fearful, rest from the weariness.
- Parenting for both Cliff and Christine, for supernatural strategic creativity that would turn this difficult season into a special investment, a sowing that would lead to abundant reaping in kingdom ways for each of their children. Pray for trust, understanding, grace, patience and lots of joy and laughter.
- The tedious work of therapy…. pray for therapists, that they would know God’s love in their time with Christine.
- Healing of infection in the bone, vision, carotid arteries, ankles, inflammation, and restoration of all her senses especially taste, smell, and hearing.
- Discernment as she listens to God concerning calling and focus in this season, and the year ahead.
- Encouragement as these months are definitely the doldrums in the healing journey. Support in the practical burdens of daily life and the tedium of therapeutic exercises. Grace to deal with medical and insurance paperwork. “Paperwork definitely brings on the doldrums!,” Cliff and Christine say.