Monday, December 28, 2009

Hard Day

We made it through one obstacle and we're on to the next. Today was a reminder of what a long road this will be. We saw Matthew today and he is so aware of everything...his injuiries, his pain, his feelings of loss, sadness, guilt, frustration. He was so scared of the pain; it felt so enormous. He couldn't sleep last night because of panic attacks from the medication and he was informed by the doctor this morning that in six months, he may have the same contraptions he has now. Tears dropped from his eyes ever so carefully as I placed my check on his forehead and tried my best to comfort him. He said, "I feel lucky to be alive, and of course I would rather be alive than dead, but I can only feel lucky for so long."

It is so difficult to watch my younger brother endure that kind of pain. I want him to feel free at least from guilt, but I just have to sit with him through it all. My life is up in the air, which also doesn't help. I know I need to be here to help him through his recovery. I want to be here. I am having such a hard time imagining being a therapist with my brother in this state. I don't know how people do it. How do I move on with my life and continue to support my brother in the ways that he needs? That is the question of the night.


  1. Dear Erin, Sending you love and strength as you take each day, one small step at a time. I work as a Speech Therapist with many adult hospital patients and helping someone through these traumatic events is definitely hard. However, as I read your words and thoughts, I can see that you are strong and compassionate. You are helping Matthew so much by being with him, talking and reading to him. You are right about the humor. Matthew may be feeling lots of different emotions at this time and that is so normal. So just be there for him and sometimes that is enough. Lots of love to you, Matt and your family, Carolyn White

  2. Hi Erin, Just reread your last comment. You can be there for you brother in many ways. Posting the news is one great way that you have communicated his status to all his friends.
    Its ok to take a break and have another family member or friend stay with Matthew. Sometimes you will need to recharge yor batteries-you know your brother loves you and wants you to stay strong and healthy. Love, Carolyn

  3. Dearest Erin,

    The following words were written by Sharon Valleau on a card. I thought, "These words are perfect to send to Erin". . . . . . "God is guiding you even when you might feel that you have lost your way. He knows how much you can bear and He will give you strength and fill you with his grace and blessings as He walks with you every step of the way. He is surrounding you with His love and holding you gently in the palm of His hand. . . . "

    To Matthew you have been more than his sister. You have been his constant support, his confidant, his rock. With your kindness, comforting words, encouraging prayers, hours of company and unconditional love he can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

    From the bottom of my heart, please know how important you are and how much I appreciate you for sharing your days with Matthew with us. Words can hardly express the respect, admiration, bond and love that I have grown to feel for you over these past days. I think the world of you! Maria

  4. Thank you for the thoughts and support!