Saturday, December 30, 2006

Rose Colored Glasses

Update #17 ~ Day 12~ I'm not counting the days because I want to know how 'many' days Mark stays in the hospital. I count them to remember the 'first' day he arrived and I let myself marvel at how far he has come in 'just' 12 days. Every day the doctor examines Mark and then talks to us. I don't report his fever to you because it goes up and down everyday. This is normal and I quickly learned not to judge his body's accomplishments by that number. As a matter of fact, the only numbers that really count is his blood numbers. They move by 1/10 of a per cent. Three days can go by and that is the only change, but it is going up, meaning, getting thicker and also how many white blood cells there are. He lost a lot of blood and they thin the donor blood that they replace, so thicker is a good thing. (except if it gets too thick and then they get concerned about clots) White blood cells determine infection. Normal levels are 5, his are at 14. He sat in 'the chair' today for 1&1/2 hours. I am oh so proud of him. He has no bowel sounds yet and that is not a good thing. The machine that has been taped to his front incision for the last 4 days was removed to be cleansed and then replaced. It took off a scab with it.(Ouch!) Each day now will be hard work on his part. Longer hours in the chair mean lung and intestinal movement, all very painful with a broken back and foot, torn ligaments and swollen lymph nodes in his groin, plus the fact that he is weak from not eating or drinking anything in 12 days. But...all of this is necessary and good. We cheer him on and cry later, when we are in the car, at home, in bed, or when we wake up. I spent the morning with my Pastor's wife. A daughter of her own almost died in a car accident and she nurtured her back to health, so she cried with me, understanding every emotion that I expressed. It was very healing, cleansing and she even made me laugh.

I was proud to show her you...yes you! She had never heard of bloggers and I walked her through the network and she cried as she read your comments. She cried and was amazed that so many people cared so deeply and were so wise, kindhearted and faithful. When she left me, I came back to my computer with your words still on my screen and I realized that you were my rose colored glasses, spectacles that help me look at all of this, knowing that it is not hopeless or a trial in Marks life which ending will not be without purpose or meaning. Again, I can never thank you enough. The doctors won't yet say that he is out of the woods, but today's teeny steps, felt like they covered miles.

P.S. ~ I am trying my best to get around to all of you to personally thank you for your support, I'll be there soon :)

Can these people please email me their address or P.O.?
Michelle O'Neil


Blogger amy said...

Glad to read that you had an opportunity to spend time with someone who had been in your shoes.

11:10 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

Hey well done Mark for managing "the chair". A big step forward. I'm glad you were able to connect with someone who understands what you are going through. Thoughts and prayers, as always are with you.

11:22 PM  
Blogger Amber said...

I am so glad to hear you had that kind of support today. Someone who really understands because they have been there, is so validating and a true blessing, I'm sure!

Go Mark, go!

Baby steps, are still steps none the less. :)



12:00 AM  
Blogger Pink Granite said...

Mark's courage and strength leave me in awe. You and your husband have passed on such wonderful gifts to him. We are still here, holding your family in our thoughts. - Lee

12:15 AM  
Anonymous Lady Painter said...

You see, that is what I think is the positive side of all the technology. The wife of your pastor could not, at her time, express what she was feeling apart from her close environment. I am sure you will see her again and she will help. She is a mother and she is gone through something like you do. She is probably the best to give you some advice.
From our side, we are thinking a lot to you all. I will continue to give to my Bouddha, everyday, an offertory and ask for Mark's recover, and that it happens with less and less pain.
Take care of you.

12:38 AM  
Blogger gena said...

Oh how brave your son is being,and I am glad you had a chat with someone who knows first hand how you are feeling.Blessings to you and your family Darlene.xx

12:45 AM  
Blogger Libbys Blog said...

Reading your post today, covered me in goosebumps! Little steps, day by day!
I have two beautiful daughters whom I adore, but a teeny, weeny bit of me envys your son! A mother and son relationship is sooooooooo special. Thinking of you both! Stay strong!!!

1:12 AM  
Anonymous amy said...

and thank you!! i don't believe horrible things happen to teach us lessons but i'm sure i'm not the only one who has learnt lots from the way you and your family have moved through these difficult days. your posts are so generous in their honesty. to feel trusted by someone who is a 'stranger' by most traditional definitions is a very special thing.

sending Mark lots of good thoughts while he takes these difficult, small but oh so wonderful steps towards recovery.

take care,

1:23 AM  
Blogger Dotee said...

I was so happy to read this post and hear of the steps Mark has taken towards recovery today.

And my heart warmed at the thought of you having support from someone who understands exactly what you are going through. We can support and love you but if we have not gone through this we cannot possibly comprehend (no matter how much compassion we have) how you are feeling.

You are SUCH an inspiration Darlene. The way you have shared your pain and bravery in such a raw and heartfelt way. Every day I come here and read your posts, and read every comment and feel blessed to be part of this wonderful community.

It says so much about you that you are visiting people's blogs personally. I was so touched (and surprised) to see a comment from you today.

It is New Years Eve here in Australia and I am sending you much love for the new year. And strength for the path ahead.

This time next year Mark will have walked many,many steps and we will all be astounded by how well he will be.

1:50 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

1 and a half hours? That's fantastic, no wonder you're so very proud of him!

How wonderful that you have someone alongside you that knows exactly what you're going through and completely understands. It must help in some way to know she's there when or if you need her.

2:02 AM  
Blogger Goddess of Leonie said...

dearest darlene,

i want you to know you are marvellous, strong, courageous.

mama BEAR, you roar as much as you need as you tend to your young as best you can.

we love you.

in love and light

2:37 AM  
Blogger Susannah said...

every day Mark grows stronger, and with your love and encouragement and positivity he will keep growing stronger. i believe in him, and i believe in you. sending you lots of love xox

2:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is a few hours to the coming New Year here in the Philippines...and this morning my family prayed for Mark and you and the rest of your family in church...which makes me happy to read about his progress...

I see my life and my family as even more precious now...each moment significant and should always be treasured...Your strength and honesty in dealing with all these inspires me to be a better...just a better human being...

Happy New Year from Manila!


2:41 AM  
Blogger Vanessa said...

It's so good to hear that you have been getting more good support -in 'person'- one to one... and from someone who's been through it :)

I'm so pleased to hear that Mark has been braving the chair so well... not that I expected less of my hero :)

The progress he's making is astounding. I'll be thinking of him as the clock turns midnight and we ring in the new year. It's an uphill battle but we're all behind him -and you.

Love from Dublin,

4:26 AM  
Blogger brittany said...

This is good. I'm glad that you laughed:)

peace and love,

4:34 AM  
Blogger Regina Clare Jane said...

You have to approach each day with a new mindset- that was so difficult for me when my dad was in the hospital. I was always having to steel myself. I am happy that you found support in your pastor's wife, Carlene- you need that. The support you get from your family and all of us here is wonderful, but to be able to share your experience with someone that has been through it- that's priceless.
The New Year may bring in more challenges for you and Mark but may they be challenged together and wrapped in prayers and love and light.
Happy New Year, Darlene...

4:37 AM  
Blogger deni said...

I am so glad you have someone who understands what you are going through.

And good to hear of Mark's progress, each day will be hard, but will also bring him closer to being well again.

Sending Hugs and prayers your way.

5:00 AM  
Blogger mrsnesbitt said...

Sending hugs and prayers.
Well done Mark.

5:12 AM  
Blogger Jack K. said...

Here it is Update #17, wow for the accomplishments. Not only Mark's but yours as well.

It seemed to me that a weight is being lifted from your shoulders. Through your writing you are becoming aware of it.

I understand the difference between the body temperature and the numbers. To this day we watch Maryann's numbers. They are always good, knock on my wooden head.

Thanks for showing your Pastor's wife our messages. There is no better evidence of God's love than by showing how it manifests Itself. He works through us all, even if there are those among us who deny His existence.

As for the personal thank you, you have given me mine right here, and that is enough for me. You have quite a daunting task to respond to each of us individually, so rest assured that your thanks have already been received.

More energy is coming your way. Mark gets his share as well. Glad to hear that he is using it.

So as we used to say in the "old days", keep on truckin'.

5:39 AM  
Blogger gerry rosser said...

It's New Years Eve, and I'm still here thinking of you and your son and family.
Your strength is an inspiration.
Glad to hear of any progress of any kind. Keep up the reports.

5:50 AM  
Blogger Jemima said...

Makes me wonder how people who don't blog cope with tragedies and traumas.

I really want to say something helpful, I still haven't come up with anything, but I am thinking of you, I have my fingers crossed wishing you lots of bravery, courage, strength, health and tenacity.

I'm sure you're doing a good job, the best in crappy circumstances.


6:14 AM  
Blogger Karen Travels said...

I'm still here, checking every day!

When I am getting ready for bed every night I say to myself, "I have to check on Mark first." It has become a ritual for me, as I am sure it has for countless others. Of course with the time change I sometimes have to check on him first thing in the morning, instead!

So happy to hear of the progress! Go, Mark!


6:21 AM  
Blogger Becca said...

Your friend's knowing and understanding support is priceless - I'm so glad you were able to share time with her.

Some hopeful progress today for Mark - such a strong young man, and so lucky to have the support of his parents and family.

It was good to hear you sounding more hopeful, today. I'm praying for lots more days with evident progress. need to concern yourself with sending thanks. Our words are sent to you as gifts of (rose colored!) light, to shine your way out of this darkness you're in. I'm just happy if they illuminate your life in any way :) xo

6:23 AM  
Blogger BJ said...

I am so moved by hearing the day by day progress that Mark is making. Tiny steps. But that is really okay. You are continually in my thoughts and prayers. I can't open my laptop without coming to your blog to get the latest report. I admire you so for keeping this blog as I feel it is part of your coping too. You are a strong courageous woman. So glad that you could spend time with the pastor's wife because she truely knows what you and your family are going through. God bless you all.

6:24 AM  
Anonymous acumamakiki said...

This is all beautiful news on the last day of this year. He is such a strong boy and with the love and support of your family, Mark is destined for great things, I know this Darlene.
You and yours are continually in my thoughts and I wish only that Mark continues to get better; the baby steps I think, are the most beautiful progress of all.

6:30 AM  
Blogger Fern said...

I am with Jack K. You have given me my thanks in every post where you have thanked us over and over again. I am honored to be a part of your life. I felt I was a part of your sisters and now I feel a part of the whole family.

I am so glad that Mark is doing better. I will keep praying.

We know how you and Mark are doing. How are Mark's Dad and sister?

6:31 AM  
Blogger Sheila said...

Small victories are victories none the less, and we celebrate each one of Mark's accomplishments with him and you, his family. I send you prayers of love, hope, strength and healing for 2007.

6:54 AM  
Blogger Shaz said...

I am so proud of all of you I am so glad you found comfort in someone close, who truly understands. I love you sweet girl and Mark well he will always be in our prayers as you know.
I wore my necklace with pride and it seen in the New Year with me, Thankyou it is my new lucky charm. I feel your love. xxxx

6:56 AM  
Anonymous Loretta said...

I have never been in a devastating accident like Mark's, but my sister was in one that was quite bad. I remember her first times sitting in the chair, her body there, drooping over, but there, and her face closed over, her mind far away as if she had to leave her body to will it to do the doctor's bidding.

One and half hours is a long time and Mark must be a superhero to undergo such an ordeal on the first day! Amazing step towards healing, one that will be followed each day by greater steps.

The New Year fast approaches. Mark is being reborn on this night, carrying his injuries and pain, but lifted by his indominitable spirit and that of his family. I read on your sister's blog that you knit as Mark's body knits back together. Loop by loop, stitch by stitch, may your son return to wholeness.

7:12 AM  
Blogger Laini said...

Wow, how a simple word like the "chair" can sound so menacing and horrible. And the new things you can learn, about blood for example, that you would like to never have to know. I hope Mark's small indicators continue to move in a positive direction. His story has been such a reminder to me of both our fragility and our strength, that we could survive such things! I saw a movie a few years ago, a documentary reenactment of a mountain climbing accident, that filled me with such AWE at the human will to live and the body's incredible, unbelievable power to fight on. It was called Touching the Void, and I can tell you the true life story as well as the movie have a happy ending. It is truly inspiring. It made me wonder if we all have that fight in us. Maybe to varying degrees, but I think we do. Also, glad you had a chance to expose someone new to the wonderful possibilities of blogging! Happy New Year, Darlene. It feels like a lame thing to say in the face of all that's happening, but I truly hope this year brings good news for Mark. Blessings!

7:24 AM  
Blogger angela said...

Such positive news, Darlene. I'm so pleased that Mark's been up and is making progress.
You're all so brave and it's good that you had somene to talk to who could share your experiences.
My thoughts are with you,

7:29 AM  
Blogger Linda said...

Peace be with you

7:33 AM  
Blogger britt said...

your positivity today is so uplifting. it sounds like your visit with your friend was just what you needed at this time. yay! i am so glad to be a positive force for you at this time, i know how i need positive forces at different times too. many prayers and blessings your way today and every day! britt (atlanta)

7:58 AM  
Blogger Liza's Eyeview said...

I jusr read about Mark (and you) through becca's blog. I said a prayer for him today.


8:08 AM  
Blogger M said...

There is nothing like being totally understood and that kind of understanding usually comes from someone who has walked their own path in a similar circumstance. I am so happy for you--that you have someone who totally understands what you are going through right there with you. And it will also be healing for her. I am still lighting a candle for Mark. The wick is almost to low now to light well, but I will keep lighting it until it can not stay lit anymore. He so amazing and brave--just like his Momma!

8:18 AM  
Blogger Jodi said...

So glad you were able to talk with someone who can offer you support from the perspective of someone who has been there. I'm happy for your positive voice coming through today. I'm reading between the lines and I'm seeing hope. Praying...Also, did I miss your PO Box for Mark? Have some goodies to send your way...

8:41 AM  
Blogger Shari said...

Writing words are therapeutic and healing. You are stronger than you think.

Mark is a lucky young man to have a mother like you. I only have two young daughters. I hope they are just as brave and thoughtful as he is.

Prayers are continously being sent.

9:02 AM  
Blogger Jerri said...

Here so many of us are, waiting for the New Year, waiting for Mark's recovery, waiting for news of your health. It feels as though we're all poised together at the edge of something new and scary with the potential for amazing growth and wonderment. Literally, we are connected only through electronic signals and gizmos, but truly we are woven together by threads of compassion and the common experience of genuine love.

So glad to hear you were able to spend time with someone who has, in a way, walked in your shoes. What a blessing.

You and Mark and the rest of your family are and will remain in my heart and in my prayers. Thanks for the update.

9:16 AM  
Blogger bronxbt said...

fantastic news. wonderful story about your pastor's wife and yer special share.

sooo cooh.

i'm still here, tho a little dispondant. thanks for the thanks, while it's not necessary... it brought a much needed smile to my face.

~ happy new year to you and ALL of yours.


9:21 AM  
Anonymous Teresa Sheeley said...

Hello lovely,
Hope today is showing signs of improvement also. How wonderful you have a connection with someone who has been in a similar situation. God gives you those special people to lean on. Love you much and hope your day is filled with much blessings.


9:28 AM  
Blogger Turquoise CRO said...

I'm so GLAD you have someone like your pastor's wife to comfort YOU, HUG you and answer your questions! Phew! Mark has come a long way for 12 days the shape he arrived in! Pretty soon maybe he will even look forward to getting up to sit in the chair! Thinking of You all and I'm sending you all LOVE and prayers for HEALING for a Happy New Year, that's it! HEALING NEW YEAR! Thank YOU! Darlene for all the updates and showing us and reminding us what is most important, our family and friends! Lots of HUGS!and LOVE,and Happy HEALING new Year to us all! xoooxooxoxo, Cinda

10:00 AM  
Anonymous liz elayne said...

i am so happy to read these positive words and how you are being so strong and positive for mark. that is so good my dear.
he is improving with each second!

glad you were able to spend such good time with your pastor's wife, someone who clearly understands.

continuing to send prayers and blessings for healing and peace.

10:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am so glad that he is showing improvement. he is young and strong and brave and a fighter. i bet he gets it from his momma. ;)

10:19 AM  
Blogger Deb R said...

Baby steps are a huge accomplishment with such serious injuries, so I'm impressed at Mark's strength, and at your strength for giving him such support. I'm glad you got to spend time with your pastor's wife. That sounds like it was very comforting. Sending much love your way, Darlene~~~~

10:30 AM  
Blogger Patry Francis said...

The hope in this post lifts my heart! Wishing you a new year filled with love and HEALING. xoxo

10:53 AM  
Blogger Trish Ryan said...

Yay Mark for all his accomplishments! And yay you for receiving all the love and support, both from us here in cyberspace and from your pastor's wife.

As I was praying for Mark last night, I got a really strong sense that God is doing something in him through this experience - building him up, in a way. I don't mean to say that God caused the accident, but rather that he is using it. The promise, "God works all things for good for those who love him and are called according to his purpose" kept running through my mind. Mark is being strengthened, shaped, and formed into the full character God created him for. Bless you as you nuture and love him in that - but I also sensed that God wants you to step back from time to time and feel proud of your son and what a wonderful job you've done loving him.

11:01 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

Keep counting those baby they will add up to be steps made by a giant at the end of all of this.
I can't imagine the pain involved with the "chair" but it sounds like inch by inch, it'll keep doing what it's supposed to do and Mark will be sitting up straight before you know it, with his shoulders back making his momma very proud !!! (and I'm sure we're all praying for bowel sounds)
Laugh when you can, it's the best thing you can do for yourself right now.

11:24 AM  
Blogger Kindness (disarms the difficult) said...

New here. Have just completed reading everything you wrote from day one of this devastating ordeal.

Bless you and your family. A new candle has been lit for Mark. Will keep you all in my prayers.

11:41 AM  
Anonymous lana said...

it seems impossible to tell you to have a happy new year...reading as i have each day of your pain and mark's struggle. yet as i sit far away from you, in western canada, with my still baby boys (8 and 3 years), i am praying that you and your family have a happy new year, and that 2007 is filled with healing and hope. i will continue to follow your journey, to send positive energy from calgary, alberta, to dream of you and to pray for us all to handle life's 'adventures' with faith and courage. blessings to you all.

11:49 AM  
Blogger Star said...

Darlene, your words brought tears of joy. I know that the sitting had to be so painful, but to know that Mark made that first effort makes the progress seem real and that the only way to go is up, up, up! Miracles are in the making!

I loved seeing the picture of you on Denise's site. It is a reminder of happy times that will come again for all of you.

Sending much love and the biggest hug ever.

xoxo Star

11:55 AM  
Blogger Vesper said...

it sounds like he's doing so much better. very happy to hear. :)

11:56 AM  
Anonymous claire nz said...

HI Darlene,

So pleased to hear how long Mark managed the chair. What an achievement. I'm glad you had the opportunity to talk to someone who has been in such a similar experience.

Baby steps are sometimes the hugest achievements of our lives aren't they.

Hope and sustenance to you.

PS I sent you an email but it sadly bounced back...

12:43 PM  
Blogger Left-handed Trees... said...

Good job, Mark! Pushing forward in spite of all of it...I am still quietly humbled by this. Wishing him continued recovery and forward momentum as we move into the new year and beyond. How strong he is but also how strong you are--a wonder!

12:56 PM  
Anonymous Right Brained Gal said...

I have been following your blog for the past few weeks and I pray for you and your son every day. I want you to know that you represent all mothers and everything you are feeling from the love to the pain, we are right there with you. A mother's love can work miracles.

Your blog has made me realize how important life is and how much we depend on other people and God. We are not in this alone. Please keep the faith and know that many, many people are praying for you and Mark.

1:05 PM  
Anonymous jenn said...


happy new year... i say this to you on purpose because my hope for you is that you can and will think of 2007 as a year full of hope, deep love and amazing connects, not struggles and hard times. as the clock changes tonight i will continue to pray for mark and your family. i will pray that you all will get to see the miracles and the love and that is what you carry with you into 2007.


1:14 PM  
Anonymous Brian said...

We all need rose colored blinders at times.

1:57 PM  
Blogger paris parfait said...

So glad to hear Mark is making progress - and that you found some measure of comfort by spending time today with someone who understands the challenges you're facing. That visit must have been like a glimmer of light in the darkness. Blessings to you, Mark and all your family as a new year begins and the healing continues. xo

2:06 PM  
Blogger Gracey said...

I'm so happy to hear that there are "baby steps" in Mark's condition. I have had you and Mark on my heart and wait anxiously for the next updates. I keep praying for you and I have always found comfort in this verse during rough patches in life.

Psalms 18:2
"The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold."

3:05 PM  
Blogger dd said...

So great you spent some time with someone who could absolutely identify with what you, Mark and the family are going through. Throughout all this, I have wondered how is your husband doing and your daughter.

For the new year let's just continue praying and KNOWING that Mark is going to continue to improve daily..

As much as possible Darlene, I hope your New Year is full of positive news and warm family times and for Mark, I just wish him the absolute very best, one moment at a time.

love, sandy

will email you in a bit..noticed you wanted my address...

3:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have to be the strongest woman alive to think of us at this time. The love that you have for your son and I believe the love and prayers from everyone are helping so much. The strength that Mark has is amazing. If you can, tell him that I am sending him a beautiful ray of sunshine from Tucson, AZ full of positive and healing energy. He can hold this ray of sunshine while he is in the chair and then keep it beside him until he needs to bring it out again for a little extra strength. This ray of sunshine will alway be there for him whenever he needs it. You and your family take care of each other.

6:45 PM  
Blogger LEstes65 said...

I thank God that he sent you someone who has been where you are. And how cool that you got to show her your blogger network.

All our love to you - and may 2007 bring huge amounts of healing and love.

9:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank god for the rose-colored glasses moments. It is in those moments that we are most hopeful, and miracles are allowed in when we hope.
Still praying, as always!

9:52 PM  
Blogger Karma said...

Hang in there. One of the reasons that I love blogging is the way that it allows me to feel connected to other people in issues that I sometimes can't find people in person to contect with. I'm glad that you had someone there to share the blog with.

4:14 PM  
Anonymous AscenderRisesAbove said...

That makes so much sense about the thinned blood and watching the numbers creep up. It is wonderful that you have found someone to share with that knows exactly what you are going through. That makes all the difference in the world. Sending you healing energy!!

5:33 AM  

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