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Monday, January 17, 2011

The valley is a dark place.

The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Psalm 23:1-3

This morning started out great! Cale was awake when I got to the hospital at 6:30am. They had just gotten him freshened for the day and into a chair near his bed. I helped get his teeth brushed and hair combed (something very important in ICU!), and then I helped him eat some breakfast. He ended up eating the most that he had been able to, so that was a good start to the day. We had time to play cards and hang out before things started to get busy. About 11:30am we were moved out of ICU and in to a step down unit.

In this picture, Cale was saying, "Good bye ICU!" :)

The whole ICU stay was very draining. It was so loud and busy the whole time! It was very different then our first visit, that's for sure. I was hoping that getting moved out, things would calm down for Cale. No such luck. He's in a room with three other patients so he can be closely monitored still. Hopefully it's just for tonight! There was a special Soup and Bread lunch for Martin Luther King Day, so I went downstairs to get us some yummy soup. Everything up until that point had been going pretty well...

Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:4

Cale had a horrible afternoon/evening. It's the worst I've seen him and it was really bad. My heart hurt for him in a way that caused me so much pain, it felt like I was being stabbed. I'm not trying to be dramatic, just honest. He had gotten himself so worked up that he almost hit the nurse, pulled out his IV, and kept hitting himself. At first I just wrapped my arms around him and started praying. I wasn't quite sure what else I could do. Then he began to say that he was mad, angry, sad, hurt, scared and that he quit. He even said that he wanted to die.

I know I've said it before, but I just can't imagine what he's feeling. He still doesn't understand that he has brain injury and he's hurt. He doesn't remember he had surgery, so to him, he feels like he's being held here. He asked me to run away with him...Oh how I would love to and make everything go away! The look on his face and the emotion I felt from him made everything else we've gone through so small. He's so tired of being poked and messed with.

There's no way to reason with him because at this point he still doesn't understand reasoning. I prayed with him and had him tell God whatever he was feeling, but that lasted a minute and we were right back to the beginning. He had scared the nurse so she had the nursing assistant step in, but he got just as mad at her. He said he never wanted them to touch him again.

Part of this I know is from him being really tired and he's over stimulated. I also know that this is an expected step in his recovery and something very normal. Wasn't it last week we were going through this? It has just gotten worse. I thought since he'd been fine the last week, that we had gotten past the rough stuff. Nope. Even with knowing all about what's going on and not to take anything he's saying personally, it doesn't make it easy for me-it's so hard.

I had finally gotten him to calm down for a couple minutes and what came to mind was Psalm 23. I'm not going to fear this valley. The Lord is with me! I felt like I needed someone, someone to help me, but there was no one around...until I reminded myself that I'm never alone. God is with Cale and myself every step of the way. Not too long after, Cale got really upset again. It lasted until about 3pm and at that point, I wrapped my arm around him and we fell asleep. When we woke up an hour later, I had pillow lines pressed on the side of my face, and Cale had a smile. The rest of the evening was still rough and I'm emotionally drained, but we had another really good prayer time. Cale is questioning a lot and in those moments, me saying that people are praying for him and that God is with him,seems to only make him more frustrated because he can't see it.

Tonight as I fall asleep, I'm thanking God that my husband has emotion. That he's at a point that he can experience anger and frustration. Praise God that he's not laying in bed anymore not able to express anything! I got sweet and spicy today!

On top of it all...I accidentally knocked a whole cup of water into my shoe. Ha.

I still have not been able to show him all the comments because I don't have internet in the main hospital like I thought I was going to have. I haven't had any time to try to print some off, so, that will come hopefully this week!

I'm thanking everybody in advance for praying. You are all amazing and have blessed us so much.


  1. Kathleen,
    My first thought was a reaction to the medications. I think you wrote that they had adjusted his medications. There are so many side effects to both pain and seizure medications that sound like some of the things Cale is experiencing, especially since he has not had this type of "severe"reaction before. I am sorry you both are going through this and trust you might bring this up to the doctors/nurse or even just google the meds yourself,
    Vicky Scott/mother of Jonathan TBI

  2. Kathleen,
    Your Mom posted this afternoon on Facebook that he needed prayer, so I stopped and prayed for him. God has equipped you with the strength and courage that He knew you would need in these rough times. I praise Him for gently reminding you of His promises from Psalm 23.

    You are an inspiration of true Christian faith, lived out on a daily basis. You are faith with skin! LOL! I will continue to pray for both of you and your impact on those you touch.
    Kathleen Hoover, KBC

  3. Hi Kathleen!
    I will keep praying for you and Cale! I can't believe it's almost been a year. :( I am pray for full healing! And that your Cale will come back to you! I also want you to know that yes God is with you always! :) But I'm just a phone call away too! You can always call me anytime! Night or day! I mean it! I can't give you a hug over the phone, but I can listen and pray with you! ;) Hang in there girl! You both have come so far! God is NOT done yet! Not til He calls you both home and that better not happen for a very very long time! I love you dear friend! I'm so glad that you come over with Hannah a few years ago and worked your way into my heart and life! You have been such a sweet blessing! I'm praying tonight that the Father holds you and Cale tight and gives you both PEACE! Tomorrow is a new day! I pray it's a great one! Love you!

  4. Still praying Kathleen. Cant imagine being in your shoes, (especially the wet one, ha ha), but my heart hurts for you and Cale and i know everyone that reads your blog wishes we could be physically there and wrap our arms around yous and make it all go away. I hope that knowing we read your blog every day and pray, and feel (a very small part, im sure), of what you are feelng, helps you to feel loved and
    cared for. Things will turn around again. And til they do, you will be supernaturally "held" by the prayers of your friends and family, and mostly by the GRACE of GOD. Love you. Lori/New Life

  5. Praying for you both. Love how you continue to look at the positives. You are an amazing person and I know that God is going to bless you both abundantly. That God that his mercies are new each morning! Praying for a great day for you both.

  6. Kathy Beckett1/18/11, 7:15 AM

    Kathleen, I'm so sorry for the rough day yesterday. I can't imagine what that was like for you...or for Cale. I will be praying specifically today for Cale to feel God's calming and comforting presence. Please know that I will be praying for your wisdom and endurance as you continue to run this race. Love & prayers are with you.

  7. Kathleen,
    Many of us reading this would be there at a moment's notice for you... listening to your voice on the phone, standing in the gap with prayer and doing whatever each of us was able. Just remember, you are not alone -- we (a whole collective, lot of us) may not be physically there, but we are emotionally though not to the depth that you walk this walk. Our hearts break for Cale and you too -- that's what standing in the gap is about. Reaching out in prayer doing what we can to help this situation. Never feel guilty about those desperate pleas, because it allows all of us to be a part of Cale's recovery too. Without you opening up, it would be as if we were outside the fishbowl looking in. Now we can be an active part in prayer, because you are so honest with everything. God is amazing in his faithfulness to us. I know the wait can be excruciating at times, but His timing is perfect!
    Prayers, hugs and love to you both...
    Terri W

  8. Oh, Honey!! My heart cries with you. I love you and am trusting Father for your strength, wisdom and understanding. I too, am trusting Father for Cale. I can't see the answer, BUT Father has already lived the answer. He has live the end from the beginning. No, I didn't make a mistake in the saying. He is above time as we know it. Thank God, that is so!!!! I love you, Father loves you more, Marion

  9. We are praying for you both, I'm sorry hes feeling frustrated, this will pass, medication does confuse the mind, It will get better, tell Cale ,Michele knows some of what your going through, mention my time 10 years ago, when I see you posts it brings back so much memory 10yrs ago TBI Survivor. Its good you writing journels & being so positive with Christ in your days, Sincerely, Michele Siemasko

  10. Kathleen , just saw this post and it brought tears to my eyes to see you BOTH suffer this trial, and yet you are right in looking at it from the positive thank God Caleb is responding, he is spicy and letting you and everyone know it ! " I will fear NO evil , for thy Rod and thy staff they comfort me " He is ever present and He is ever a comfort He guides us and directs us with his Rod and Staff, that is what leads us to his peace. You are pressing in and taking hold of all he has for you - the enemy is not going to just sit back and say awww isn't that sweet - NOPE he is going to do all he can to discourage your sweet, strong, heart - but He can't because you have the WORD which is your sword- you are fighting a battle that isn't just for you and Caleb, I see it as an epic War that is being fought in scrimishes(sp) on a daily baises and battles that are larger but contained in this war there is much truth,love, hope and the ability to stand when you think you can't It is a picture for others to see and Know the goodness of God -I see you facing an enemy that wants to kill and destroy you and your seed, just like Eowin( sp) in the "Lord of the Rings "who is beautiful and strong you will surprise the enemy with just WHO is in you! Loving you - praying for you and believing that the Lord who is able to do all things exceedingly above what we think and imagine will give Caleb (even this day ) the faith he needs to press on, even when he doesn't understand it all - " Lean NOT on your own understanding - but in ALL your ways acknowledge HIM and He will direct your path - Oh you are so on the right course Keep it up girl ...We are all cheering you on - and Caleb too!!!! Love Ya Reenie

  11. I love you I am praying for you both. Cling to Jesus....He holds you.

  12. just remember sweety the closer you get to god the more satan will through up road blocks to try and bring you both down.I know its hard,but your doing great just keep close to god and hopefully this soon will all be over.I dont blame cale.I'd wanna be done too.Hang in ya :)

  13. My sweet girl,
    I know I am not there physically but I am there for you in mind and spirit and as Tigger said you can call me anytime - day or night. It matters not I am here for you always. I am so sorry that you are going through this but so grateful that you are equipped with the faith , strength and courage to make it day by day. Hang in there and know you both are in my constant thought and prayer. I love you.

  14. Barbara McKeon1/18/11, 1:05 PM

    We will pray that God gives vision to Cale, so he can see and logically understand what is happening. Remember the rod and staff that our Shepherd holds is not only for keeping us in the herd, but for discipline. Tell Cale about the discipline of a soldier. Or, let him tell you.

  15. Hi Kathleen,

    Prayers for you and Cale both! You're right to see that at least he can reflect and experience emotions, however negative they can be. His frustration is a sign that he knows where is and knows where he wants to be; he'll get there soon. I know it.

    Rob had and has frustration/anxiety/anger whenever certain medications are adjusted or withdrawn so maybe it's a reaction or withdrawal...? Whatever the case may be, I hope and pray he gets through this soon!

    Thompson Family


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