A Long Road – Day 11

Last night we received the results of Carly’s swallow test. Apparently, she still is not swallowing properly. The mechanism that closes off her airway when she swallows is not working, so everything is going straight into her lungs. This is serious, and there is no way to know when or if she will learn how to swallow properly. As a result, her feeding tube must stay in. Her speech therapist is still working with her consistently with small amounts of soft food (applesauce, pudding) under very close supervision to try and help her learn how to swallow properly. She also still has not spoken, and while the speech therapist doesn’t see any reason why she shouldn’t talk eventually, it is the same with the swallowing. There is no real way to know for sure when or if she will start talking. Her speech therapist is wonderful, and actually took the time to explain to us that this is very common with girls that have brain injuries like this!  Girls withdraw and quit talking, and boys often become aggressive and throw things and have tantrums.

She is still active in physical and occupational therapy, and still able to walk with much assistance. She cannot get out of bed or a chair without help and support. She still has serious balance issues, and has only regained some of her motor skills that help her do daily things like brush her hair, her teeth and get dressed. Her right side is stronger than her left, but she has more flexibility and control on her left side. She managed to tie her shoes with a little help today! For Carly, the small things like that are huge steps, because this really is such a long recovery road for her. She has to re-learn how to do everything. All the little day to day things that we all take so for granted!

She does answer questions with thumbs up or thumbs down, and with yes and no nods, and she always seems to understand what we are saying to her, so the doctors are confident that her intelligence is intact, and that for the most part, her memory hasn’t been damaged. She knows where she is, who we all are, and where she lived and was working and going to school before the accident. When she is walking down the hall for physical therapy, she can read the room numbers and find her own room!

We are still hopeful and we still believe that God can work miracles, but the news from her doctor on her swallow test is not good. Especially since her body has had a hard time processing the formula that goes through the tube, and as a result, she has been having blood sugar issues and has needed insulin on several occasions. Janie is going to chat with the nutritionist and find out when we can start supplementing her feeding formula with some Juice Plus, and eventually some Juice Plus Complete shake mix, so she can finally start getting some real nutrition!

Please continue to pray for Carly’s recovery, and for the transition, Noah and Abi will be going through as they both start at new schools on Monday. Please also pray for safe travels for Tripp and Thy, as they are driving up to Salt Lake from Cedar City tonight to see Carly!

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