From Brian: It is amazing how time has passed by so quickly the last five months since the accident. Amanda continues to be doing very well. She is only attending occupational therapy a couple days a week and there will soon be discussion as to whether she needs to continue going. In their opinion, it is more important for her to perform her own therapy at home and then attend the work setting as much as she can. Last week was her first time going to work where she spent 1 1/2 hours helping with various things around the office such as assisting others. When I picked her up, she was working in the mouth of one of the hygienists she works with. I almost fell on the floor in shock. I guess they decided to give Amanda a chance to get a feeling in a real mouth instead of just working on the plastic model at therapy. She said that it felt pretty good, but she is far from getting back to work and cleaning patients' teeth. Maybe in a couple more months. When she does return, she will have to start slowly and build up her endurance, working partial days here and there. She still gets very tired and usually needs to sleep in the afternoon to be functional the rest of the day. There is no real hurry for her to return and it only makes sense to wait until she is completely ready. Unfortunately, Amanda's drivers license was suspended and we had to return it to the state. She had to get a photo identification card made last week since she didn't have id anymore. Although she hasn't felt ready for awhile, she will probably be taking the test sometime in the next month or so.
Overall, Amanda is feeling really good. She only complains about her lip and the constant numbness she feels through that area and into her face. She also gets frustrated when she can't think of certain words, but that occurs more often when she is tired. Her speech has improved as well as her speed and endurance. Towards the end of this month, she has appointments with the facial surgeon, plastic surgeon, and orthodontist. Many people ask me how she is doing because they know how bad things were for her the first couple months and also how a brain injury can change someone. It is really a miracle from God that she is back to the person I know as my wife and best friend.
The girls are doing really well. Kylie finished her counseling sessions and we feel that it was a good experience for her. She continues to enjoy basketball and her team is undefeated after six games. After the games are over, she just wants to stay and keep shooting. Both Kylie and Alyssa performed separate singing acts in the school talent show a couple weeks ago. They were amazing and we are so proud of how hard they worked on their songs. They also got their report cards today and are doing incredible in school. Amanda and I couldn't be happier at how strong and resilient the girls have been. They remember the accident and bring it up sometimes, but don't allow the events to affect their lives. I think it has really helped for them to witness how mommy has improved and is getting back to being herself.
One of the biggest changes that has occured the last month has been my return to work last week. It was very difficult to make this change, but it was time to make that step forward for all of us. Students and staff at the school provided decorations and cake for me which was very much appreciated and not expected at all. Although I struggled for the first couple days to stay focused and keep my mind from conjuring up thoughts of our accident, things became much easier when my new students arrived and I started teaching. It will take a little time to get used to the routine again, but going back to work is a sign of good things are going for Amanda. I was truly blessed to have the first semester to heal emotionally and provide Amanda and the girls the support they needed. Things couldn't have worked out any better.
Amanda, the girls, and I haven't forgotten all of the generosity from friends, family, and strangers the last five months. Many people are still offering prayers for us and for continued healing for Amanda. We are amazed and very thankful for that. God bless!