Thursday, September 30, 2010

Kjerstin is adjusting a little better now. She desperately wants everything to be normal, but we are helping her work through it & she is doing better. She had really good news today at physical therapy. they said she will only need to go for a few weeks to help with some of her muscles. We knew she was doing really good physically but less physical therapy was exciting to hear. She will have to do occupational therapy & speech therapy for quite a bit longer. Speech therapy also helps with certain parts of her brain for memory for problem solving & things. It's kind of a combination therapy.

Kjerstin & Mom have been trying to find their groove. They went from a completely structured hospital environment to home. we sat down the other night & got Kjerstin a date book so she could right down her appointments to understand her schedule more. This allowed her to understand when she could go places or have visitors & when she could work in a nap. We made bedtimes & set times for visitors to leave for weekdays & weekends, so that Kjerstin will get her rest & so there isn't a daily discussion with her & Mom when friends have to leave, when she has to go to bed, etc. Kjerstin is doing good with the structure & boundaries. we are having a lot less tears & frustration.

Mom is doing a little better. She said it's like when you bring your first baby home from the hospital & you are scared to death to let them out of your sight or sleep or let anyone watch them - She said that's what she feels like with Kjerstin. She did let Kjerstin stay at jerimaih's house though the other night. I think it will be a very long time before Kjerstin ever stays at anyone's house besides me or Jerimiah's. Dad is working & trying to adjust back to the "railroader" schedule, which is different everyday. He is also trying to get things done around the house. We got done what we knew needed done to get Kjerstin home & now he is doing all the things we either forgot, didn't realize needed changed, or the things that they come across that Kjerstin needs adjusted.

Audra Sanchez requested that I post an announcement on here regarding food for the family. audra would like to organize some meals to take over to Mom to make life easier for the next week or so while they get rested and adjusted to being home & Kjerstin's new therapy schedule. You can reach Audra on facebook, email: or her home number is 777-9965.

We still need quite a few golfers for the tournament October 9. Entry includesPlease pass the word on to any fellow golfers that might be interested. Thank you so much to all of you who have signed up so far, sponsored a hole or donated prizes. We do have some pretty cool prizes including 4 Chiefs tickets to the Titans/Chiefs game, a signed picture by the Chiefs quarterback, $75 gift certificate to Powell Jewelry, Dick's Gift cards, Golf shirts, etc. We are also very excited about WSU Men's Basketball Coach Marshall & his wife, Lynn, for participating & supporting Kjerstin's tournament. Please come join us for this event for a day full of golfing, food, prizes & friendship!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Home Sweet Home

Kjerstin is home! We are all so relieved! She is doing good. She was sooo happy to be home! She is going through a hard stage right now with her recovery. She has realized that even though she is home, she can't do all the things she used to be able to do and that's very frustrating for her. She desperately wants to be "normal". She has some anger that we are working through. We will get there, though. She doesn't have a "filter" so to speak, so whatever she thinks just comes right out of her mouth! The doctor said this is normal & she will do better at become more tactful as time goes on. She still giggles all the time and has a little bit different opinions of things than before. She likes different food & clothes & things like that. Nothing major. Just different. I asked Kjerstin what she thought of being home & she said she liked it and she had never hugged so many strangers in her life! I thought that was funny. People & events from the last year are still hit & miss for her. Some she remembers, but most she doesn't.

She was very excited about her new bed & room. She really wants to go back downstairs, but understands why she can't. The fact that we left her bedroom downstairs exactly like before the accident really made the transition easier. Well, with the exception of cleaning it! Change is very hard for her right now & the doctor said things need to stay the same as much as possible. Along that line, we have a meeting Monday with the Derby Superintendent, so please pray about this.

Kjerstin has been to see the pediatrician and we took her to her hair stylist to help her with fixing her hair so that she can cover the side of her head that we had to shave. She gets tired easily and isn't quite up to a "normal activity level"yet, so she takes a nap each day. She made it to Braden & Colten's football games this week & they were both very excited about that!

This week Kjerstin starts outpatient therapy. She will have speech, occupational & physical therapy for at least a year. She will also have to return to Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital in Nebraska for follow up visits & testing every six weeks for awhile. She will start back to school in the next few weeks, but it will only be for about three hours a day for now. She will slowly work her way up to a full day. The therapists & doctors say that she is making phenomenal progress & this will go by faster than we think.

We are still working on the golf tournament. We are still in need of teams, so please tell any of your friends and family that would be interested about it. Oct 9 at Hidden Lakes Golf Course. Don't forget WSU Men's Basketball Coach, Gregg Marshall & his wife, Lynn, will be participating in the tournament & would love to see everyone there!

Please continue to pray as our little "miracle" still has a lot of therapy & work ahead of her!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

We got the results from Kjerstin's neuropsych test & she is doing well. She is having problems with short term memory & her attention span, but this is to be expected. The last year for her is a bit spotty, memory wise. She doesn't remember much of her Freshman Year, but each day brings new memories. The pictures & scrapbooks have helped her tremendously. The doctors say that her memory will continue to improve and she should remember a lot as time goes on.

Mom & Kjerstin survived the transitional apartment for 3 nights! Actually, it went quite well. It was a little hot in there & they had to move all their things from one hospital room to another & back, but we've decided all we do is move things to different hotel/hospital rooms each week, so what's one more time!

Kjerstin is walking very well. She goes up and down curbs just fine. She likes to tease Mom, though, because Mom is very careful & would always point out things like curbs that Kjerstin needed to be careful of when walking. Now that Kjerstin is walking well, she will say, "Mom, there's a curb, I need to step down!" It's a big joke now! Boy, we never thought we would be able to joke about that four or five weeks ago! So, the BIG exciting news........ Kjerstin will not be coming home with a walker or a wheelchair!!! How exciting is that?!

The house is coming along well. we are almost finished. We are cleaning tonight, so that Mom can come home to a clean house. Kjerstin's room downstairs has been left exactly the same. We will vacuum & dust it, but that's all. We have set up another room for her upstairs to use until she is well enough to return to her room downstairs. The doctors said that we need to do this. Children with traumatic brain injuries have a hard time with things changing when they are recovering & they are constantly striving to show others they are normal.

Kjerstin is really looking forward to coming home. In the last week her personality has started coming back some. She is still pretty giggly, though. She is texting & is on facebook again. She can't wait to see all her friends & family. She has been trying to make all these plans for when she gets back home & we have been having to explain that she can't go and do all those things quite yet. Not because she can't physically, but because she will get exhausted and rest is still of upmost importance right now.

She is going to return to school for about three hours a day to begin this semester. She will have physical, occupational, & speech therapy along with eye doctor, neurologist & psychologist appointments. This in itself will keep her busy. The doctors said she will have therapy for a minimum of a year after she returns home. We are still working on the school issue. Derby's superintendent called me yesterday & we visited. He was very nice. He is looking into everything and will be letting us know in the next few days. Please pray that this works out for the best.

Mom is very excited to come home. She is so exhausted, both physically & emotionally, that I can't even begin to describe it to you. She may sleep for a week straight when she gets home! A friend of the family, Jeff Ellis, has offered to fly up to Nebraska to pick up Mom & Kjerstin & bring them home Thursday, so that Kjerstin isn't exhausted by the time she gets home. Please pray for good weather so that they are able to fly home. We will be having a Welcome Home Party on October 9 at 5:30 pm at the Derby Library. Please come and visit with Kjerstin & Mom & celebrate their homecoming. They are so excited to see everyone.

Don't forget the golf tournament. We need the forms turned in ASAP! We need to evaluate how many teams we have & get the things finalized with the golf course, so please call & let us know if you are participating at 316-209-8972 Wendy or 316-308-5775 Mike and mail in your forms. We are praying for a good turnout & would love to see you there!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Sorry for the delay. We have been sick at our house & about the only thing I have been doing is work.

On the other hand, Kjerstin is doing well. Her spirits are good. She is excited to come home & working towards that goal. She is doing well in the driving simulator & her therapies. Her & Mom are staying in a "apartment" within the hospital for the next three nights as a transition to coming back home. She has been cooking in the kitchen & shopping in the grocery store at the hospital. It is amazing the things they have at this facility. Thank you Larry the Cable Guy for donating millions of dollars to make this wing of the hospital possible. And along that line, Larry the cable guy went to visit all of the kids at Madonna last week. Kjerstin got her picture taken with him & they gave him one of Kjerstin's fundraising shirts.

I saw the neatest thing today. I'm driving down the road, fighting a migraine, just frustrated & tired & I look up and see a lady I don't even know standing in a parking lot wearing one of Kjerstin's lime green shirts! It was so awesome to see. Thank you to whoever you are. It made me smile and reminded me how lucky we are to have such support from friends, family, the community & even strangers. We couldn't have made it this far without you.

We will be having a welcome home party for Kjerstin. I will post more details as we get it organized. We decided to have it at a later date because by the time we get Kjerstin home & situated next Thursday, they said she would be pretty tired.

We are so excited for Kjerstin to come home. Please pray that she has a smooth transition.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Kjerstin took a shower all by herself today!!! She was sooo excited that she sent me a text to tell me about it!! The therapist said that she can start walking by herself without us holding onto the belt while she is in her room. We just have to be close by. This means she can walk by herself to the bathroom & around her room. May not sound like much, but compared to the "she will never walk again" statements we were hearing this is tremendous. I absolutely can't wait to take her to see the doctors & nurses at Wesley Pediatiric Unit. They are going to be so excited & I can guarantee their won't be a dry eye in the place!

We will get the results from her neuropsych test next week. I'm sure it will be good.

Dad is back to work. It was a bit of a challenge for him to get back in the groove & focus. he called me three times on the way. He kept thinking of things he needed to tell me about the golf tournament & the last time he told me he was having a hard time focusing. He had forgotten his keys, bag & other stuff he needed for work so he had to go back & get them. I'm sure it's hard to get back in the groove after 2 1/2 months. He says this has really aged him! Thank you so much to all of our friends at BNSF for donating personal leave days to Dad so that he was able to stay with Kjerstin as long as he was. Not only did it help Mom & Kjerstin, but it helped Dad & Kjerstin's relationship tremendously. They are much closer than they have been in a very long time.

Kjerstin will be flying home on the 23rd! Only 14 days left! Keep Praying!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Kjerstin is getting a bit frustrated with her therapy. She says it's really hard & that her life is like a nightmare she can't wake up from! We keep encouraging her, though. If she only knew what she has already overcome. It will all make sense to her soon. So, if you get a chance, please send her some encouraging words & say a prayer for her.

She is doing very well with her therapy. She is doing much better in the driving simulator! She only crashed one time out of seven the last time she was in the simulator. Much better than last time. They are doing a neuropsych test tomorrow & that will give us a much better idea of where she is.

She now knows about the school issue and she is pretty upset! We have been trying to explain it to her, but she just wants to go back to see her friends & to the school & staff that she knows. Just please keep praying about this.

Tonight Mom & Kjerstin got to go to a movie. Getting out helps Kjerstin to pass the time more quickly. Her & Mom have a great time together!

Dad has settled in back home pretty well. He seems a bit lost though. On Sunday, he asked me if I wanted him to come clean house with me. When I said, "No. Thanks though." He said, "Well, I can. I'm in the cleaning mood!" What? I thought. Is he sick or possessed or what? Of course, it's neither. He is just really making an effort & Kjerstin's accident has really had an effect on him! I had to call & tell Mom. She didn't believe me at first! It's a big change from going nonstop for 2 1/2 months constantly doing things to coming home to an empty house. Today he told me he did 8 loads of laundry because the sheets & blankets smelled stale & he wanted the house to smell nice for when Mom & Kjerstin come home! He cleaned the pool, watered plants, cleaned out the fridge, organized food into rubbermaid containers for his lunches, went to Wal-Mart, worked on the bathroom. I don't even remember the rest. I was tired by the time he got half way through the list & it was before noon when he called me! Wait until I tell Mom this.

The house is coming along. Thank you so much to everyone who has helped. We hope to have it done by next week.

I have been working with Kjerstin's puppy, teaching him manners! UGGGHHH! What a chore. I think huskys are the most stubborn dogs I have ever worked with. We have mastered the chore of learning not to jump on people! We want to make sure that he doesn't knock her over. Now if we can just get mom's crack head dog to learn to not bump into people, I will be doing good!

It is all coming together & I am counting the days until Kjerstin comes home. I must say I have never been so emotionally & physically exhausted in a very long time. I can't imagine what Mom is feeling. Please pray for continued healing for Kjerstin. She is our little or should I say BIG Miracle!

Monday, September 6, 2010

On Sunday, we got to take Kjerstin for another brief outing. We went to Pizza Hut & then her & Mom went to Target, as we all had to drive back home. We moved Dad back home & moved Mom's things into Kjerstin's hospital room. It was really hard for Kjerstin to let Dad go home. After we left, Mom & Kjerstin followed us and Kjerstin had to talk to Dad again & get another hug. She cried & told him she didn't want him to leave. That made Mom & cry, too. On the way home, Kjerstin sent Dad a text and asked him if he was at work yet! She doesn't realize quite how far of a drive home we have.

She was walking much better once she got her insersts & even better when she got her new shoes that didn't cause her feet to hurt! Amazing what inserts can do for your walking & posture. We saw a huge improvement for Kjerstin.

Today Kjerstin got to go watch a friend's soccer game in Lincoln. She really enjoyed it! There were some raindrops that fell while they were sitting there & she thought that was fun. We are always looking out the window, going's raining! Now we have to work in the rain all day or find the umbrellas, etc. Kjerstin has a different outlook when it comes to rain, now. She thanks God that she can actually feel raindrops & see rain! My how our priorities have changed. Makes you stop and think about what things you take for granted in your own life! Is it your family, your job, your kids, your friends, the fact that you can walk? Or what about things like being able to experience emotions, have memories & live through the seasons of life? Whatever it may be in your life, stop and think about that and see if there are some priorities that need changed in your life. We have the gift of a second chance with Kjerstin, but we almost didn't. Will you have a second chance with your loved ones? No one knows. But what we do know is that we have a chance right now to change our priorities & not take life or family for granted.

Please continue to pray. These last few weeks before getting to return home are going to be very hard for Kjerstin.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Kjerstin & I were hanging out looking at comforters & looking at email, etc. & decided that we should share this:

To realize the value of a sister/brother, ask someone who doesn't have one.
To realize the value of ten years, ask a newly divorced couple.
To realize the value of four years, ask a graduate.
To realize the value of one year, ask a student who has failed a final exam.
To realize the value of nine months, ask a mother who gave birth to a stillborn.
To realize the value of one month, ask a mother who has given birth to a premature baby.
To realize the value of one week, ask an editor of a weekly newspaper.
To realize the value of one minute, ask a person who has missed the train, bus or plane.
To realize the value of one-second, ask a person who has survived an accident.
Time waits for no one.
Treasure every moment you have.
You will treasure it even more when
You can share it with someone special.

To realize the value of a friend or family member:

Kjerstin just wants everyone to realize what gifts God has given them & to remind everyone to cherish them! Tell your loved ones what they mean to you......TODAY!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

A new bed and wheelchair are in order for Kjerstin! She has moved from the bed that has a canvas net cover around it that you zip up to a regular bed! She does have an alarm on the bed so that if she gets out of bed, the nurse will know. Her wheelchair is just a regular wheelchair that she rarely uses. Such progress in such a short amount of time!

Today we got to go on an outing. She wanted to get a manicure, her hair trimmed and strawberry crepes from Village Inn! There is a wonderful lady that donated her time and gave her a manicure. Then we went and got her hair trimmed. It had not been trimmed since weeks before the accident. We worked on changing her part so that we can cover up the part of her head that was shaved. It looked so good that you can't even tell she had it shaved! Then it was on to Village Inn. She had her strawberry crepes, lemonade & french silk pie. She was in heaven!

Kjerstin's new inserts wouldn't fit in her tennis shoes, because we couldn't take out the insoles that originally came in the shoes. This was causing her feet to hurt, so we went and got her a new pair. She was very happy. Her new inserts fit & she said her feet didn't hurt for the first time!

She would really like to walk without anyone holding onto her belt, but they haven't released her to do that yet. They are letting her walk without any assistance during physical therapy, but otherwise she has to have one of us holding onto her belt. She is still laughing a lot and enjoys all of us here and any visitors that stop by. She played UNO, Life, and some other games. Tonight we put a blonde streak in her hair like she had before. (It was part of the hair that got shaved off when they put her pressure monitor in her brain.) She took a shower & we put some Moroccan Oil on her hair to make it smooth & healthy & Steph straightened it for her. It looks really good. She was really happy with it & she felt a lot better about how she looked. You know teenage girls!

Dad is coming home with us tomorrow, so we have been packing up his things and moving some of Mom's things to the hospital. They were out of hotel rooms tonight because of the Nebraska football game, so we are all sharing a hotel room! Yes, all 9 of us - well all 7 of us. Jerimiah & Braden stayed at the hospital tonight. So much love in this room! Actually, it's not too bad. We have all been getting along well. However, this roll away is HORRID! Nothing like sharing a twin size roll away with your 8 year old! But, it's only for one night & we get to see Kjerstin so it's worth it!

Kjerstin & I worked on putting her make up. She did pretty good. The mascara is a little hard for her & she smears it some, but otherwise she did really good. Getting her ready in the mornings is quite a feat! You have to help her do everything. From bathing her to dressing her to brushing her teeth, make up, deodorant, brushing & blow drying her hair, etc. Girls, just imagine verything you do to get ready & imagine doing all that for another person! By the time her & Mom get ready, it's nap time nearly! It is a full time job for Mom.

We ended the evening by talking, joking & looking at her scrapbooks. Thank you so much to Marvene, Tammy, & all our other friends who helped put those together for her. She really has enjoyed them and so has Mom & Dad.

We told Kjerstin we would have a Welcome Home party for her & her eyes lit up! She is so ready to come home and we are ready for her to be home. As we near her homecoming, please continue to pray & especially pray for her to have patience & perserverance.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Kjerstin tried out the driving simulator and, well.... it didn't go so well. That's Ok, though, we didn't expect her to be ready to drive yet! And besides if Mom is assisting with her driving, she's never gonna pass! We have all seen my mother's driving. There's a reason why the kids refer to her as "Crazy Linda" when she drives..........mailboxes, garage walls, corn fields...... I know Steph is dying laughing right now................All I can think of is Steph screaming, "We're gonna DIE! We're Gonna DIE!! Aww, Steph, it's just corn stalks. We are in Tennessee, who needs roads when we can cut through the field! Oh, the memories Mom has provided us with!

So, back to the simulator.... The driving simulator helps Kjerstin to deal with her fears and anxiety about driving caused by the wreck. It is a wonderful tool that works very well and is completely safe. She is also practicing getting in and out of the car and putting her set belt on and taking it off.

Another area of therapy that she is working on is basic everyday skills like vacuuming or grocery shopping. The hospital has a room set up just like a bedroom that they go and practice in. Mom sent a picture of Kjerstin vacuuming and it said : "Miracles have happened! How many times have you ever seen Kjerstin do this!" That's the truth. Kjerstin did not like vacuuming. Even when she was a baby, she didn't like the "noisy" vacuum. They also have a room set up like a grocery store. Kjerstin is given a list and she has to go and find the items and place them in the cart. She then has to check out and pay and put the items in a bag. It's pretty amazing the things this hospital has. I must say, Madonna Rehab Hospital is an amazing place!

Every time I talk to Kjerstin, she tells me how she wants to come home. I don't blame her one bit, but I just keep encouraging her and telling her the harder she works at therapy, the better she will get so she can go home. She has a calendar hanging in her room that she crosses out the days on to count down the days until she gets to come home. Otherwise, her spirits are good. She is happy and laughs quite a bit. She gets to go on an outing this weekend again. She hasn't decided where she wants to go yet. We are going to play some card games and rent a movie one night. She has decided that. If you have time, would you please drop a card in the mail with some encouraging words in it. I know many of you have already sent cards, but now Kjerstin is at a place where she will be the one opening & receiving mail. I think it would help her tremendously. She has a wreath hanging in her room with all of her cards attached to it by ribbons. It is really neat looking and it would be good practice for her to open and read cards and tie a ribbon on them to hang on her wreath. This will help with her fine motor skills. The address is : Madonna Rehab Hospital, Pediatric Floor, c/o Kjerstin Webb Room L56, 5401 South St., Lincoln, NE 68506.

Please don't forget the golf tournament on October 9! WSU Men's Basketball Coach, Gregg Marshall & his wife, Lynn, will be participating in this event! We hope you will join us! There are more details at or you can contact me at or my cell 316-209-8972.

As you go through this holiday weekend, make sure you tell your loved ones just how much they mean to you. Now is the time, as we have no promise for tomorrow. You may be traveling to see family or you may just stay home. Either way, hug your loved ones and tell them how much they mean to you.