Monday, June 21, 2010

Just another Monday

This entry will give a quick recap of the past couple days. In Saturday's post I mentioned that Shannon had had a rough time for a couple days and that her feeding tube had been pulled back to an NG (stomach) position. Sunday continued to be a difficult day emotionally for Shannon. She is more and more aware of her circumstances and her condition relative to where she was before the accident and it is hard for her. She doesn't see as we do the fabulous progress she has made, especially since she was not awake for a long time following the accident. Her discouragement along with a hospital policy that dictated that the feeding tube be completely removed and a new one inserted into the NG position, led to an extensive discussion with the doctors around mid-day on Sunday. Dr. Such-Neibar, the attending Rehab doctor, made a deal with Shannon that she would take out the feeding tube completely and back off on some of the stimulant medications used to help her in therapy if Shannon would prove that she could take in at least 2000 ml of fluids daily, 1800 calories, and participate well in therapies. If she couldn't meet the nutrition goals in the next couple days, they would have to put the tube back in. So by the time I made it back to the hospital for a "shift change" with Pheobe, the tube was gone!! That accomplishment notwithstanding, Sunday was a sad day for Shannon and she and Pheobe had determined that sometimes you have sad days, but you pick yourself up and move forward the next day. So we concluded the day looking forward to a great day on Monday.
Shannon was more willing to participate in eating and drinking, had a great breakfast and a good lunch. She was more attentive in therapies, but still exhibited a fair amount of fatigue. It seemed to me that her eyesight was better and that her ability to reason things out was improved. But there were still times throughout the day where she was just sad. Jen Call, her Young Women's leader, came and brought a "cardboard Shannon" that had attended Girls Camp last week. Jen told how the girls had taken the cardboard Shannon everywhere they went, hiking, swimming , eating, meetings, everything. Shannon really perked up for the visit by Jen, her girls and Shannon's friend Emily. Late in the afternoon she went to the opthalmology clinic and had her eyes checked out. The Dr. was pleased with her vision, especially in the aftermath of a traumatic brain injury. He still wants to continue in the treatment of her eyes for dryness and wants to evaluate her weekly in the clinic for a while.
One other positive experience happened this evening. The nurse came in shortly before bedtime and asked Shannon if her head hurt. It had been several hours since she had been given Tylenol, and she always says that her head hurts. But this time she said it was fine. Even when she was asked about an hour later, she said her head was still fine and that she didn't want any pain medication. We hope this is a indication of better times ahead for her headaches and pain. At least she is resting peacefully as I write this blog entry. We hope that she can rest well tonight, eat well tomorrow and participate well in her therapies. And we especially hope that Shannon can feel the support of all the love and prayers offered for her. Thank you for caring for her and our family.


  1. Oh good, that is what we all want to hear. This morning we were watching Finding Nemo and I thought of you Shan when Dori is swimming and singing "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming". Its not always easy to "just keep swimming" when you feel so tired or the current of the water seems to go against you but it is important that you just keep fighting to swim because are stronger then you know and you are worth fighting for!

    Love you!

  2. Hi Shannie! This is Emmie. I went to the eye doctor the same day you did. Guess what? My eye is getting stronger, Shannon. I'm glad the doctor told you your eyes are getting stronger too. I love you Shannon!! Bye

  3. HI Shannnon,
    This is Kim and Aaron's friends again! My name is Nikki Ward. I just wanted you to know that I read your blog everyday, and that I am so impressed with what an amazing young woman you are! I know that you don't know me, but I sure am thankful that I have been able to share this part of your life while I read about you and your progress everyday! You have inspired me to be a little better and try a litlle harder everyday to be a better person. I am so happy that you have come so far. I pray for you and have fassted for you and want you to know this! Keep on going and remeber that Jesus Christ knows absolutley everything that you have gone through, will go through, and are going through.
    Love, your friend that you don't even know Nikki

  4. Hey Shan!
    We would like to come visit you and bring Athena whenever you'd like more company!
    Also wanted to tell you how awesome you are and to always look forward!
    "The journey is the reward"

  5. Sweet Shannon, I wish I could give you some amazing words of wisdom, but I cannot. I must admit, it is you that gives me wisdom, hope, and strength. You are going thru things that most people never have to face, yet you are courageous and beating the odds. I have all the faith in the world that you will overcome all of these things and have an amazing recovery. And most importantly that you will have even greater faith and happiness that you once knew! Thank you for all that you have done for me!

  6. Dear Blackham family, I recently happened upon your blog through a friend on facebook. I check in on you all very often and you are in our prayers! Dear Shannon...I don't even know you and I love you. It breaks my heart the things you are going through right now at such a young age. My husband (38) suffered a massive stroke in January and also had to have a craniotomy. You are experiencing many of the things that he has experienced and it breaks my heart. I am so happy that your family is so faithful in the gospel. You are a strength to me when I read your posts and the great faith and trust you have in our Heavenly Father. I want to thank you for sharing your thoughts and allowing me to be able to read them. I can't even tell you how much your thoughts and testimony touch me and help me when I might doubt. I loved Katie's thoughts on Faith and Fear. I needed to hear that today. Keep the faith my dear friends. Shannon is going to make it through this. We just have to keep trusting in our Father above. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
    Sharee Smith