Every day was a new day for all of us. We waited in anticipation for David to respond to the stimuli that was constantly given to him through a prayer, a familiar voice, music, a beep, or a command.
And then on June 2nd, Ana Carolina’s birthday wish came true. David opened his eyes and kept them opened. It had been 23 days hoping and praying that he would come out of the coma. Laughter and tears were mixed in wonder. Every prayer said had been answered. We called, text, emailed everyone – everywhere. David had reached a huge milestone. The staff was static and we all hugged like a family. After so many days not paying attention to myself in the mirror, all of a sudden I hoped my hair and my face looked well. What a gift! This was the miracle we had asked for. Joy was in the air.
David stared with a vacant expression. He looked as if he was starring off into space – no emotions – his eyebrows didn’t move at all. We continued to learn about brain injuries. David’s limited awareness was known as a minimally conscious state. “Some patients move from coma to the vegetative state but others may move from coma to a period of partial consciousness. The latter patients have a reduced level of self-awareness or awareness of the world around them and have inconsistent and limited ability to respond and communicate”. (www.msktc.com)
His neurologist, Dr. Jagid, gave new orders and the medical staff talked about David graduating. He was being moved to the 9th floor the next day. The ICU had been a safe place for all of us. Things were about to change. We didn’t know what this meant but we were ready to learn the new staff, the new routines, and the next steps. So many new details were to become familiar.
The busyness of our lives obscures the signs, wonders and miracles of every day. We live in such a rush-rush era where everything is instant, drive thru, on the go, snap and run that we miss important details. The past leaves important experiences for tomorrow, which is today, and the future has its own worry, which we are incapable of dealing with, until it becomes real and present. Too much attention to the past keeps one on a standstill and too much attention to the future can leave damaging gaps and a life of anxiety. Moving forward living in the present with what each day brings is the only way to go.
(Isaiah 43: 18-19; Matthew 6:34)