As some of you may have noticed, I had to delete my last post written roughly month ago regarding a scandal with Sherrin’s healthcare. Though I was angry to take the post down as it made many people care about my sister and reach out to my family, the costs outweighed the benefits.
That being said, I’ve realized that my lack of posting and updating about Sherrin is directly correlated with the amount of visitor Sherrin receives, which is exactly why I started this blog. If I don’t keep Sherrin relevant than nobody will.
She has not had a friend visit since her birthday, which was in mid April. I know I repeat this often on this blog but if you consider yourself someone that cares about Sherrin, it is your duty to prove that to her. I don’t care if you were her friend, acquaintance, or only know me; we want you to visit.
Sherrin’s journey is lonely. She needs you to be there for her to want to try to get better. And for all of the people that are a part of my family or were a friend of Sherrin’s and have not visited my sister once in the past two years… shame on you. I’ve run into multiple people throughout the years who tell me that they want to visit Sherrin but are too afraid of what they might see and it would be too hard on them. I laugh at people like this. It’s too hard on you? Oh, I’m sorry, you’re only plagued by the tragedy that you see via Facebook pictures but you don’t actually have to live it, and you expect me to sympathize with you? Give me a break.
Excuse my rant. But not really. Some people really should be ashamed of themselves.
On the positive side, we have not gone backwards in Sherrin’s progress in the past few months. She received an extra dosage of Baclofen about a month ago that has caused her mood to sore. Whenever I’m around her, I can usually catch her smiling at me or repeating, “I love you.” I’ve been working with her to improve her typing skills as an alternative form of communication and she really seems to enjoy it. I pull up a Word Document and ask her to type various things such as her mood, favorite food, my middle name, mom’s maiden name, the day of the week, or math problems. She keeps the laptop on a small table in front of her and types with her index finger on her left hand.
As I have mentioned before, Sherrin struggles with her right side. When she had her accident, she had more damage on the left side of her brain (which controls the right side of the body) than her right. I imagine this happened because she smacked her left side of her head on her driver’s seat window but there’s no way to know for sure. As a result, Sherrin can’t really move her right arm, hand, or leg as well as her left. She holds her right hand in a fist the majority of the time so my parents and I have been stretching those fingers multiple times a day. I pull each finger apart and make small circles for several minutes and then ask her to stretch her fingers on her own and then make a fist. I repeat this for 15 minutes, and it works! Having that flexibility in her fingers allows her to have more control and actually respond to my commands.
However, the days that her hand isn’t moving so great and I ask her to do something with her
right hand, she picks up her right hand with her left to assist. She will normally ask me why her right side doesn’t work and that’s when I have to explain the whole accident, TBI, coma, and recovery all over again. She doesn’t really get sad when I explain everything… she usually says, “Oh, wow,” or, “I don’t remember that.”
This progress gives me peace. Or at least more peace than I’ve had in the past two years. When I think of where I was mentally a year and a half ago compared to how I am now, I can’t believe how different I am. I used to lash out at people or insult others in order to make myself think that my life wasn’t totally horrible and that other people had it worse. I didn’t mean to do those things because I would consider myself a generally nice person, but it was the only way I could justify that my life wasn’t the worst out there. But since Sherrin has improved and as having a sibling living with a TBI has become more “normal,” I’ve found more reasons to like myself. Shout out to all of those that have stuck it out with me. I promise it’s going uphill from here.
I want to give a personal shout out to my loving boyfriend of almost 3 years, Sam. Sam has
been there for my family and me from the beginning. He has been my support system through everything and I truly don’t think I would have the strength to make it through the initial days of Sherrin’s injury and graduate from college if it weren’t for him. Sam and I were only dating for a few months when Sherrin’s accident happened and he stuck it out without flinching. Thank you for helping with Sherrin’s stretching, running errands for my parents, and always saying the right thing to lighten the mood when everything seems so dark. I love you babe.