Monthly Archives: April 2012

DAY 164.0

Dear Friends,

Phil and I just enjoyed men’s bible study at Arbys.  I am eagerly awaiting the day when he will walk in there and the nice lady that gives us our food will be shocked to see him doing so well.  Today we read Revelation 7-10.  It is important that we have a good picture/understanding of heaven and hell.  After Phil reminded me, “We work together, me pastor, you pastor counseling.”  (We had discussed this last night)  He continued, “When I’m walking, go back to Georgia.”   He is excited to show those who helped him how far he has come. 

Some big news is that yesterday we went to the doctors and it was a month since we came home.  It was good to know that the doctor was excited to see his progress and mentioned that we will definitely be starting outpatient therapy soon.  He has improved so much since coming home.  If I haven’t mentioned it on here, Phil has not had a problem going to the bathroom in at least two weeks.   He is doing great!!  Also, on Monday the Physical Therapist Tracy said that Phil was improving quickly in his walking.  It is good to see such improvement, I can’t wait to see what the next month brings.

An update is that last weekend we got Phil and exercise bike.  He enjoys riding it because it helps him in many ways; his coordination, muscle strength, and it has helped regulate his heart rate.  Often times he will push longer that what he originally plans to bike.  He will start saying “30 minutes” and then decide he can go 40.  He is working hard and pushing himself. 

Yesterday Phil walked twice, once in the morning with the therapist, and later in the afternoon with me.  Phil was pretty worn out, but was determined to work hard as I reminded him, “You have to work hard because soon you will want to be walking all day.”  Seeing him walking is great because he is getting more and more independent. 

A good update is that Phil is sometime praying at night.  Normally his prayer is, “Dear Jesus, Thank you for food, for bananas, for ice cream, and strawberries.  Thank you for my family.  Please help me walk and speak.”   It is funny that he is so thankful for food, then again, that’s what he chose preached on.  Well, please continue to pray for Phil is his recovery.  We have been blessed so far and continue to go to God for help.  Thank you all for all you have done for Phil and for us, we know God has blessed us with many people who love Him.



DAY 156.0

Dear Friends,

Life with Phil is good. It is simple in all its ways and enjoyable for what it is. Today I got to take a break in the afternoon and go hang out with Kimmy. We planted some sunflower seeds back at the Duff house, then went fishing at Jacobsen Park. It was great fun. Kimmy caught three fish though I caught none. It was still a very succesful outing as I was able to chill and enjoy a sabbath from my work.

There is a lot of good news having to do with Phil, and some things to pray for. First, his speech is improving. Yesterday morning he mentioned, “the birds are chirping.” I realized that we don’t often use ‘chirping’ in our speech therapy and knew he had to have come up with this word on his own. He is saying more and more things on his own in his own clever way. Phil is doing great. I really enjoy being a little extra ‘crazy/silly’ with him just to make him laugh. Sometimes he is just annoyed by me so it is good to chill it down a bit. But getting him to laugh and talk louder are very good results of being goofy. Also, he said today that he wanted to go visit Rodney when he could walk. Hopefully you are reading this man, you were such a blessing in his life. His memories with you will always mean a lot to him.

Today Phil walked with the therapist and worked on transfers as well. He did well walking as many of you reading may have seen videos of him walking before with big walkers and lots of therapists. Today he walked with a small/regular walker and the therapist assisting slightly behind him and I was just steadying the walker a little. He went slow and did a great job controlling his feet. He is working so hard. I would ask that you focus your prayers on this so it become easier for him, as we see more improvement in speech than in his legs. Also, his transferring hasn’t improved too much recently, so pray that he can gain control and coordination in his muscles in his legs.

Thanks for praying. Tomorrow is our men’s bible study at Arby’s in the morning, so Phil is really excited. I will head to bed so that I will be well rested for that trip. Continue to pray and keep Christ the center of everything.


DAY 152.0

Dear Friends,

Life with Phil has been good but hectic.  It is very tiring, yet we see the promise in the future and that keeps us going.

Phil has been doing great recently.  He is very determined to improve and has continued to work hard since coming home.  He is definitely improving walking and his PT Tracy is very good at pushing Phil to his limits.

Phil has improved coordination since last time and has been able to throw a ball about 6 feet further than two weeks ago.  He enjoys playing sequence a lot and plays chess a little.  Today before playing chess with him I asked him if he was gonna win.  He said, “No, brain injury.”  He will, I’m sure, enjoy being able to use that excuse in the future.  I teased him saying he would say, “Ice Cream now!  Brain Injury.”

Other improvements include singing.  Two weeks ago I tried to get Phil to sing along with me.  He could sing with me, but couldn’t keep it going by himself.  Two nights ago I was asking him to sing some songs.  He was able to belt them out all by himself.  This is a sign of improvement in many areas so we are happy about that.

Phil is speaking more and more and coordination is improving, so we are excitedly watching him improve.

Phil continues to ask for prayer for his speaking and walking, so continue to do so.  Also pray for rest and strength for his family members.


April 6, 2012

Hey Friends and Family,

Thanks for your continued love and support and prayers for Phil and our family. It seems that Phil is extremely motivated to get better and he continues to get stronger and stronger every day. Phil enjoys going out into the community, mostly to eat. This guy, still can out eat anyone I know. Phil continues to get stronger and moving towards walking each day. Yesterday, as you can see from the photos, Phil, John and I (Julie) went to McConnell Springs and did a bit of walking. Phil was able to walk holding onto the rail and with his other arm around my shoulder. He made it quite far as can be seen in the second photo. I took the pic from where he started. Today in PT, he walked some more on Emma’s Drive way, using the back of his wheelchair as a walker.

Yesterday, to celebrate Ashley taking the MCAT, we went to the Texas Roadhouse for dinner. Some very dear family friends, the Parhams came and ate dinner with us. Because the TExas Roadhouse is not handicapped accessible, Phil had to get out of his wheelchair and sit in the normal seat. He set at the table with John and Kimmy and Sarah Parham. Occasionally I would look over to see Phil ACTUALLY INTERACTING in the conversation and laughing and saying full sentences. It was the happiest that I have ever seen him. His speech is gradually increasing and he is saying more things on his own without being prompted. The hard work is paying off.

Tomorrow, the family is going to the Cincinnati Zoo for the day and then to eat dinner with another amazing family the Morgans. Phil is looking forward to it and has used his animal flashcards many times in speech therapy to get ready for the event.

Phil is motivated and doing well. He is progressing more and more everyday.

But now, lets be real…My family needs a lot of prayer, especially John. the burden of taking care of Phil’s physical needs is left mainly up to John. I try and help out as much as possible but Phil wants guy things to be guy things. John is pretty exhausted, even though his muscles are huge. Pray for my family that we figure out how to make adjustments that are best for Phil but also allow ourselves to live. As Phil progresses, our job will become less and less but right now… Pray for Phil to sleep through the night, pray for peace. Pray that Phil continues to progress. Keep praying for miracles.

Some new photos of John and Phil. God is so good. Keep praying.
Much love,






DAY 139.0

Dear Friends,

These few days have been great.  To start with, we have started therapy with home health.  I was very pleased with all the therapists and especially the Physical Therapist.  She started working hard right away and gave us great exercises to do that will help him start to stand up and walk better.  It is good to know someone other than myself will be working him hard. 

Friday Phil and I got to get Arby’s for breakfast, our old tradition, which was really fun.  We were having men’s bible study after eating.  While reading some of Titus and I paused at the end of the first chapter to text some friends, and Phil said to me, “Therefore. . . ?”  I said, “Oh, you want me to keep reading.”  He said, “yeah.”  It was quite funny.  Old traditions are fun. 

Today we got to take Phil to the gorge for a trip since Julie has spring break.  Phil had a lot of fun and we got a workout pushing him out on Chimney Tops Trail.  It was extremely fun.  Phil latter was able to enjoy a picnic. 

Working with Phil is great and he is doing well working on writing, speaking, math and different exercises for his muscles.  He is using a raised toilet seat and is doing great. 

That’s all, I’m pretty tired and ready to cheer on the Cats.  Let’s hope they win.