Friday, December 23, 2011

Update Friday afternoon 12/23

I praise God again for His amazing grace and miraculous healing of Dale.  This morning, Dale reached another milestone, albeit one he may have to convince his body and brain of a couple more times before he is officially past it.  He fell off his chair while getting dressed.......and he did not go into a seizure!  This past week Dale has not wanted me in the room while he is changing his underwear and pants (something new---the not wanting me present, not the changing his clothes part!), so I will set out his clothes within reach of his chair and leave him to it, telling Dale to call me if he needs help.  This morning, I stopped outside his door a couple of times and asked if he was all right; his response was always, "Yes."  A minute later, there was a muffled thump, followed by Dale's rather irate voice saying, "I NEED HELP!"  Amanda, Katie, and I burst into Dale's room to find him lying on his side on the floor.  He was shaking and upset, more irritated than anything else.  His irritation increased when I simply commented, "Oh, you fell."  (I think he was expecting me to baby him or show more sympathy.)  I continued, "Let's get you up."  This was when the real problems began.  Apparently, he had been trying to get his second tennis shoe on when he overbalanced and fell off the chair onto the floor, smashing a couple of his (cheap) wooden airplanes when he landed.  When he tried to get up on his knees preparatory to standing, Dale began shaking badly and had no muscle strength in his arms (to push himself up) or in his legs (to stand).  He began crying a little in frustration and a bit of fear.  It took us a couple of tries with rests in between to get him kneeling; then he was able to stand fairly well with my added support.  I comforted him, reminding him that it will not always be this hard and that his body will eventually be strong and reliable again.

The blessing in all of this?  Three weeks ago, two weeks ago, falling off the chair followed by shaking would have brought on an immediate seizure.  Today, Dale worked through it, enduring the shaking and even exhibiting stronger emotions than just fear.  There were several moments where he was shaking badly enough---and scared enough---that I was concerned he might go into a spell, but I kept reminding him of what Alison (PT therapist) had said about "the worst that could happen."  I reminded Dale that, now that he had fallen, all he had to do was get back up.......all he needed to think about was getting up again, not falling more or shaking more.  Praise the Lord!  This may be just what Dale needs to help him work through the next fall or stumble or shaking episode; this may be what he needs to prevent himself from automatically seizing.  I praised Dale for thinking through the fall and shakes, for calling out when he needed help, and for staying as calm as he could and continuing to try.  Thank God for my son!

Now, to all of you who are feeling sorry for Dale and sniffling on his behalf, STOP!  Your feelings toward him will change when I relate the awful trick he played on his sister yesterday.  This was a very mean thing to do; it was also 100% Dale.  Amanda and I had gone to the store to purchase some groceries so that we would have a more varied menu than bread.  Ever been there?  :-)  Katie was in charge while I was gone.  Dale said he had to go to the bathroom, so Katie helped him up from the table and walked down the hall with him to the restroom.  When he was done, Katie kindly assisted Dale back to his chair to finish his lunch.  (Bread, remember?  Just kidding; we had beans and cornbread---Southern food!)  As they reached the table, Dale began shaking and half-fell into his chair, landing poorly on the seat.  He continued shaking badly; then, he stopped, his head lolling to one side, his eyes open.  Katie, fearing the worst, anxiously questioned him, "Dale, are you all right?"  Dale then sat up, looked at her, and said, "Ha-ha!"  THE LITTLE STINKER!!!  He was playing a joke on her!  All in favor of his immediate and everlasting punishment, signify by alternately gasping in disbelief and laughing.  The "ayes" have it.  He will be banished to his room for at least a nano-second.  Can you believe he did that?!  If he truly had any idea the anguish we have been through because of him, he wouldn't tease like that.  Of course, he remains unrepentant and chortles gleefully whenever he thinks about his horrible joke.  Shame on him!

Today at SP, Dale had a shaking episode just as we walked in the door.  He is finding more and more that these shakes do not have to stop him, just make him take things a little slower at times.  We arrived at SP on time (a miracle in itself) and got up to the second floor.  (No, we did not walk up the stairs; are you crazy?)  As we entered the SP office door, Dale's feet and brain seemed to disconnect for a moment.  He began lurching rather wildly, crossing the five feet from the doorway to the first available waiting-room seat in a somewhat undignified fashion.  He managed to drop sideways into the chair, still twitching occasionally.  Lisa (SP therapist) and the receptionist just stood there and watched in consternation.  It seemed like they weren't sure whether to rush to his aid or hold up a scorecard.  The whole time, I was asking Dale, "Are you all right?  Are you going to make it?"  The concern lacing the questions was completely cancelled out by the laughter gurgling through each word.  It really was a funny sight!  Dale attempted to answer me but couldn't get two words out before the next one got strangled by his recurring twitch.  It sounded like he had a bad case of the hiccups; it looked like he was undergoing recurring electro-shock therapy.  To make matters worse, Dale kept trying to right himself in the chair, getting halfway through the re-seating process before the next shake jolted him right back to where he was to begin with!  Finally, he was seated properly, at which point I told him, "Just sit there for a minute, okay?"  After he calmed down, we were able to join Lisa in her office and had a great hour of SP therapy.  ***BLESSING UPDATE***  Dale is doing so well in SP that, after January, he will only need to have one SP appointment per week!  How many of us thought back on August 5th that by the end of January Dale would be talking so well as to be able to decrease his SP therapy?  I have trusted God all along to know what's best for Dale and to do what's best as far as his healing is concerned, but I underestimated His timetable.  Again, thank You, Lord.  You are incredible!

Mark 9:23  "Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth."

Luke 1:37  "For with God nothing shall be impossible."


  1. I'm still chuckling Kirsten, and I can understand what you probably felt when Dale played that joke on his Sister. Disappointed that he teased her, but at the same time rejoicing that his sense of humor is alive and well. Sounds as though everything is progressing great, I couldn't be happier. All my best to you and your family during this season of celebration for our Savior's birth.

  2. I am so anxious for the time when you tell us "Dale spoke so fast that he stuttered." When that happens, (after you have regained your composure and after you have thanked the Lord), please don't hesitate to get on here and share the event with us, so we can rejoice as well. Merry Christmas to you and your family.
    P.S. If I were 12, I think Dale and I would have been good friends, he sounds as if he has my sense of humor.

  3. Well, Mom,I vote no for a punishment!! Sorry!@! I am sure Dale has no idea what the rest of the family has gone through (and his followers!!) and didn't realize his prank could be so scary. To me, I see a typical 12 year old!(I remember doing something like that to my brother when we were kids,,,he knocked me down, I pretended to hit my head on the floor and in a strangled voice asked for water. He was so scared!!!) SO I love seeing typical 12 year old actions!! I am just glad and thankful that Dale improves and improves and yes he will need to be talked to about his pranks....but I will still sniffle when I read of the difficulties he still has to go through....I am invested in Dale's recovery!!

  4. Oh Kirsten, he may be a stinker but this was actually refreshing! He is able to joke around about his current state which really is wonderful (although crying wolf can be dangerous). It is great to hear that he can poke fun at himself as a means to torment his sister! Back in August that same sister didnt know if dale would ever wake up... Praise the Lord for these special memories! These are the things that stick in your mind for life, and once you done being mad can laugh about too! God is Great! Have a wonderful Christmas Ostranders!