Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Brooke is on the 5th floor now

Just a quick note to let you know that Brooke has 'graduated' to the Intermediate care unit, on the 5th floor. This is a temporary stop until he goes to the Rehab unit, sometime later this week.

For those of you wanting to visit, I think they still only allow 2 at a time. And please refrain from visiting if you have a cold, the flu or even the sniffles... his lungs are still very fragile and being exposed to any bug, even the smallest, can cause trouble.

The picture below was taken on his second 'Cadillac' ride, where he was able to sit in the sunshine for a few minutes (granted, it was just in the hospital parking lot, but he still loved it) and listen to Lou B. play 'Amazing Grace' on his harmonica. The skies had parted and he had a nice view of the lake and the mountains. I'm told it was an incredibly moving experience to see him relish in something we take for granted every day.

Again, thank you all for finding your own unique way to keep his spirits up, and keeping mom fed!


kay said...

This is great news--all of it: the graduation and the sunshine. Thanks for keeping us all posted. Kay Denton

Will Janus said...

Dear Brooke & Peggy,

That’s one step closer to home. Needless to say, our thoughts and prayers are with you.
I’d like to tell you the story of a colleague of mine, Phil Williams, who experienced a similar injury to Brooke’s in March of 2002. Phil was 49 years old when he broke his neck (at C3-4 vertebrae) in a skiing accident at Big Sky, Montana. Like Brooke, Phil was completely paralyzed but had some minor sensation in his feet, confirming that his spinal cord was bruised but not severed. He had surgery, performed at Bozeman Deaconess Hospital, to repair his neck and, shortly thereafter, was sent to Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in West Orange, NJ. After about a month of physical therapy, Phil was able to walk, feed himself and perform other simple movements. He gradually regained motion with more therapy, and was soon able to return to work (I drove him to and from work for about six weeks before he could drive again). We all look back in amazement at his slow but highly successful recovery (95% by his estimation). I would be happy to put you in touch with him if you would like more details about his experience and/or techniques for coping with the frustrations of rehab.

Best wishes for much strength and resolve,

Will Janus and family (Patti, Todd, Peter and Dylan)

Steve Adams said...

Dear Brooke and Peggy (Tues Dec 2 5:20 EST),

I am so glad to hear you have moved out of intensive care, and that soon you will be in a rehabilitation center. My heart goes out to you, and I hope that your breathing will get easier as time goes on.

Best, Steve

Chris Horner said...

Hi Brooke,
fabulous about your move to the 5th floor, and look forward to the next one to Rehab. Would love to visit but will hold off until I shake a slight cold. Please consider me there in spirit. I miss talking politics with all that's unfolding. But there'll be time. Ellie sends her love as do I. Hugs to Peggy and all your family.

Ruth said...

Brooke, we continue to follow your progress and were pleased to hear of your nature "outing". Every day that you are able to smile is a joy for your family. It is plain to see (read) that they love you so very much. We send you our very best wishes for moments of joy. Our prayers are for your recovery. Ron and Ruth Smelser

Shep said...

I've sent 2 comments that haven't arrived! Frustrating. So this is a test...I really want to connect.

Shep said...

It looks like I can talk with you now Brooke, at last. Ever since Lisa called, my head swims and heart pounds when I think of you. Words like heroic and horrendous are come up together. What a journey you are on (and your amazing caretakers)! I'm sure you will mine it for all it's gold and find beauty within the shadows, as you always have.

I was so touched when you showed up in the flesh this August. I was reminded of all the old reasons I enjoyed your company -- and found some new ones. As we mused on our lives that mourning in the cockpit, I imagined us taking another venture into the unknown together, not up the Nile but out into the vastness of the sea beyound land, beyond our land minds. I'm sure we would get higher than we ever did on that Cairo crap -- and return more in love with life than we ever dreamt of in our adolescence.

So I'm holding that vision, and my boat, Amazing Grace, is ready when you are. Meanwhile, my heart is beaming you love and strength and acceptence.



jhough said...

I hope to see you soon, either reading or playing the guitar. I'm thinking about you and sending you good energy.
Love, Janet

T.R. Hummer said...

Brooke! Keep up the good work, my friend. I think of you every day, and send all the good psychic energy at my disposal.

Terry Hummer

Ron Barness said...

Good Morning Brooke! Congratulations on your new room. Looks like it maybe snowing in the Wasatch and I can see Mount Nebo today. I look forward to being with you soon. Hugs! Ron

TimD said...

Brooke and Peggy-

Seeing the picture of Brooke gazing at the mountain is wonderful- reminds of times in Greece gazing the the passing islands on the Golden Arrow and of sitting on your porch in Torrey gazing the setting sun.
Brooke has brought so much to the lives of all around him (obvious by these posts) and now it is time for us to bring our strength to him.
Thanks for the news-

Tim & Jane

Beverley said...

Brooke and Peggy,
So happy to find this blog and hear of your progress. It has been fun to get to know you through others comments.

I join your friends in keeping you in my thoughts and in my heart. Wishing you continued progress.
Bev Cooper

Shelley said...

I'm so glad Brooke is on the fifth floor now! And that he got to get out of the hospital for a few minutes. I can hear that harp playing...

You're in our thoughts all the time.

Shelley and Fran├žois

Shireen said...

I have left two comments to be in touch but don't seem to be able to post a blog never having done it before. Much love Shireen

Shireen said...

Dearest Peggy and Brooke since this previous one seems to have worked I send you lots of love and good vibes Shireen

Anonymous said...

I am using Becky's access to your Blog here in Portland.I am so pleased and astonished with your progress Brooke. Your courage and stamina are wonderful, keep up the good work, t
They are going to put you through the paces in Rehab. Looking forward to seeing you and Peggy, I think about you everyday and wish I could be there to pop in, please know all the Gestelands Old and Young are rooting for you. Becky and Katy send their love. Katy has 2 beautiful twin boys, it has been fun being here and being apart of it all. Love and hugs to you both Harriett