Tuesday, May 10, 2016

May 8, 2016

My Mother’s Day was WONDERFUL, AMAZING AND EVEN MIRACULOUS!!!! Jonah moved from a level II to a level III on the Level of Cognitive Functioning Scale within a 24 hour period. Instead of little ¼ inch slits, Jonah opened his beautiful green eyes wide. He blinked his eyes, he moved his mouth, he gave a thumbs up, he squeezed our hands, he wiggled toes, he was able to sit up (only fully supported with his therapists doing all of the work) for 10 minutes, he tried to hold his head up, and he tried to look at us. He was awake for more of the day than he has been since his accident. There was peace in his room. At about 4:30 PM his bestie, Cameron Gali, (Muki) was able to SKIPE and see and talk to Jo from his mission in Chile. Tears were shed by all. Later, 3 of Jonah’s teammates came to see him. Jonah stared at them with big eyes. He followed them with his eyes. They held up the championship trophy the team had won the Saturday before and Jo’s eyes got BIG and I swear he tried to smile. Smiles and his funny signature Jonah laughs are in Jonah’s genetic makeup. They come as easy to him as breathing.  I feel him doing this even though it isn’t visible and the Brilliants say it isn’t possible. I did not ask for a sign that Jonah is “in there somewhere”, I don’t ask for signs, however the Lord knew my heart without my ever asking. We had one of our favorite nurses, Rachel for the day and were blessed with, yet one more, gentle giant nurse for the night. Troy (I hope that is right) came in and was just plain amazing with Jo. He was full of light and hope. He spoke to Jo as he did everything. It was easier to leave for the night because Jonah was being cared for by love and genuine concern and competence.

May 9, 2016

Jonah was so tired today!  I think he was pooped from all he had done yesterday.  I got to the hospital after rounds today because I had spent my morning looking for my favorite holistic doctor, Dr. Scott Graf. I finally found where he had moved his office. I have been feeling compelled to seek him out. I filled him in on Jonah’s accident and of his cognitive status. He told me he is willing to help me with him. I have been cured of several “incurable” issues by the knowledge of this man. Because of these experiences of health, I did my final English research paper on the need for incorporating natural medicine with conventional medicine for a more holistic approach. Holistic medicine believes in asking the body what needs to be worked on. It is a belief that if given what the body needs, it will heal itself. It believes that you treat the body as a whole rather than in parts or symptoms.  It is a belief that there is a higher power who KNOWS.  As I got to the hospital I was told that Jo had not been responding to the doctors or nurses. I was told that he was going to be evaluated by the doctor over the neuro-physcial therapy unit, which we are hoping to send Jo to next. When the time came to meet with this doctor we were escorted to a quiet and private room. The sweet man walked in and opened his conversation with something like, “We are going to discuss the healing pathway of the “majority” of patients with TBI’s. It is a long and difficult and strenuous road. It is filled with some highs and many many more horrific lows. Your son has a horrendous brain injury.” I stopped him and said, “I keep hearing that! What exactly are you talking about? Describe to me what this horrific is.” He asked me if I had been shown the pictures. I told him I had, however I had nothing to compare them to. I had been being told of  “this story of brain injury and healing and then that story of brain injury and healing”, but no comparison on what exactly was injured on Jo’s brain versus what was injured on Bob’s brain. The doctor then went on to describe Jo’s brain as a Jello salad. The firm Jello was the hardier white matter of the inner brain. The whipped cream was the less firm top layer of grey matter. He explained that Jonah’s bowl of Jello salad had fallen of the seat of the car while traveling at a high speed.  The jello portion had slammed forward hitting the metal bowl and then bounced back and slammed the back of the bowl. The whip cream had not only slammed into the bowl but had slid off the top of the more firm jello. He explained nerves and tails of nerves and severing of tails and tails finding their original holes and on and on. He talked of majorities having no hope for this and that. He told us Jonah doesn’t know we are there and won’t and doesn’t care if we are or not. He said that the visits are more for us than for him. As he spoke, my heart began to physically hurt. I KNOW different. Why does he squeeze my hand and not the doctor’s. Why does his heart rate go up and his breathing become faster when I kiss his face and tell I love him and sing him songs? Why does he blink and try to stay focused on me when I am asking him if he sees me? I remained completely silent through his explanation. Austin would pipe up now and then with, “We have been told he will be healed”. The doctor would acknowledge that she spoke, however he would say something that would indicate that we all might be in denial of the severity and the grim outcome that was most likely to come. He finally asked what I was thinking. My dam of tears finally broke as I said, “You don’t want to know what I am thinking!” He assured me that he did, so I apologized and said, “‘F’ science!!!! That’s what I am thinking. I know what I know.” He patted my hand and said, “I’m going to like you”. 
If I might barrow the words which my Savannah quoted in one of her post from the Apostle David A. Bednar: "You and I in a moment of weakness may cry out, 'No one understands. No one knows.' No human being, perhaps, knows. But the Son of God perfectly knows and understands, for He felt and bore our burdens before we ever did. And because He paid the ultimate price and bore that burden, He has perfect empathy and can extend to us His arm of mercy in so many phases of our life. He can reach out, touch, succor- literally run to us- and strengthen us to be more than we could ever be and help us to do that which we could never do through relying upon only our own power." I feel my Saviors love! He is teaching me. He is telling me, almost hourly, “Look up, look up! Stay focused on ME! I AM the GREAT I AM. I know Jonah’s brain because I made Jonah’s brain!!! He is mine!! Glory be to my FATHER!!!” Jonah and I have a favorite song and the chorus goes like this, “I know who goes before me. I know who stands behind. The God of angel armies, is always by my side”. This is my testimony!  Praise the Lord for all of His tender mercies!! I love my boy!! #justwakeup jonah


  1. Oh dear Heather and Tom,
    I look for your post daily to hear the progress Jonah is making. I rejoice for the little miracles that you share. My heart hurts for you both as parents. Our family prays for you and Jonah morning and eve. I feel the spirit of your testimony and smile at your fierceness. If any mom or family that can defy the odds and show the doctors they know nothing next to God.. it would be you. When Jonah is well enough come bring him to Long Beach to get some fresh sea air and feel the sand in his feet. May peace be yours and go Jonah GO!!! Love Kennie and Sarah

  2. I am keeping his name on the Oquirh mountain prayer roll. So happy to hear of his progress and I too believe he hears and knows who is there with him.

  3. I am in comlete awe. and wonder...yes the lord knows jonah's brain and everything....I loved and have reread Your Mother's Day post. keep it up.I love you all,
    Sister Ludlow