Sharon & Terry Harkness The Troll and the Pillar

First post: Oct 19, 2021 Latest post: Nov 6, 2021
Welcome to the Troll and the Pillar's CaringBridge site. We're using this to keep everyone updated as Terry and Sharon recover from their car accident on Sunday, October 17th.

As of Saturday, November 6th, Sharon is totally kicking butt with in-patient rehab at Carle (room 3315). She was discharged into rehab Thursday evening, 10/28 and gets to come home Monday, November 8th! Quite a bit shorter time in rehab than we were imagining/fearing. It has been exhausting - early on, she couldn't even swing her own legs back up on the bed when her sessions were done. She has progressed to doing squats and lunges with her PT now, as of a few days ago! Her ribs are starting to feel better, too; she can take deep breaths easily now. Although her recovery is quite difficult and intense and exhausting, it continues to be so gratifying and relieving and hopeful to see how she is regaining strength and stamina.

Terry came home from the hospital Tuesday, Oct. 19th and continues to recover well with just a back brace for L2 fracture. Although he'd been  physically and mentally exhausted from the ordeal and worry about Sharon for quite some time, he seems to be just about back to normal. He's enjoying time with the girls - when they're not working or at the hospital - and continuing to tolerate his daughters' "meddling,"  😂 He's not too sore anymore other than his sternum continues to be very painful with coughing or sneezing. His mobility is largely back to normal, other than he still isn't supposed to bend or lift to much, and he's gone on walks for the last four days in a row.

Daughters (trollettes) Mary and Sarah have been here since Oct. 17th/18th and Mary will stay in Champaign indefinitely; Mary can work remotely and be here most of the time for as many months as needed, with possibly some brief return trips to Colorado when things are much more stable and other family can be with Terry and Sharon for a few days. Sarah may go back to California on Saturday, Nov. 13.

How they got here
Terry and Sharon were driving home from church, going west on Springfield ~30 mph, and had a head-on collision with a speeding eastbound SUV. The SUV had already hit an eastbound car it was trying to improperly pass in the turn lane and it continued over into the westbound lane, slamming into the front of Sharon and Terry's Honda Fit. Ambulances brought them immediately to Carle Hospital in Urbana. No one else was hurt. The other driver was ticketed.

Sharon's injuries
 - Trauma to abdomen, including perforated bowel, intestinal tears, and blood clot, which were successfully repaired via emergency abdominal surgery on Sunday Oct. 17th
 - 4 fractured vertebrae (T12-L3; significant damage to L1); successful surgery to fuse her spine from T11 through L3 was done Wed, Oct. 20th
 - 4 fractured ribs, left side
 - Fractured left elbow; splint will be enough for it to heal on its own
 - Bruising and cuts on left arm and both legs

Terry's injuries
 - Fractured lumbar vertebra (L2); treated with back brace, no surgery necessary
 - Fractured sternum; will heal on its own
 - Superficial injuries to his face: bruised eye and two 2-inch, perfectly parallel gashes on forehead, all well healed now

Mary arrived from Colorado after midnight Sunday Oct. 17 and Sarah from California Monday afternoon Oct. 18th. (Thank you, Melanie, for the ride from STL and Jeannie for the ride from Willard!)

Sharon and Terry's dear friend and incredible patient advocate, Lisa, joined them at the hospital a few hours after they arrived and coordinated all communication with Mary, Sarah and the trauma team until Mary arrived.

Dietary notes: Terry and Sarah have celiac disease and are gluten-free / wheat-free.
No other food restrictions.
(THANK YOU to all who are already bringing or otherwise providing delicious food! It is an **unbelievable** help to have good food on hand and not have to think about groceries and cooking right now.)

Your prayers, thoughts, and love mean so much to them and to us. 
Mary & Sarah

P.S. The sunflowers are a recent photo we found on Mom's phone.