Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Starting To Feel

It took me a long time to collect myself today to be able to write. Today was quite emotional for me. My mom is fighting a cold so she can't go visit Matthew until she is feeling better. My dad went back up to Pleasanton for a couple of days to get things more situated. So, I was on my own visiting my brother today. I started to talk to him. I asked if he could hear me and he nodded his head. His eyes were barely open. I told him how blessed he is. He nodded. I told him how much I love him and I promised to always take care of him. I then told him that I can read to him if he would like me to. He burrowed his eyebrows and I thought he was trying to tell me that he didn't think that was a good idea, so I immediately said that I won't read to him if he doesn't want me to. Then I noticed something changing in his face. He looked distressed and he kept pressing his head back into the pillow. I suddenly realized that something was wrong. I asked him, "What's wrong Matthew?" At that moment, tears began to stream down from the corners of his eyes. He was trying to breath harder. His heart rate and blood pressure shot up. He was balling and there was nothing I could do. Everything else I said to try to comfort him made him cry harder. I felt helpless. I couldn't comfort him. I couldn't hold him. I couldn't stop his pain. I ran to the nurse. She wiped his tears and tried to comfort him. At that point, another nurse began asking him if he was in pain. He shook his head. The nurse asked if he felt anxious. He shook his head. I said to the nurse, "I think he's sad." She asked him, "Are you sad?" He nodded his head. My heart shattered into pieces. I wanted so badly to save him from this. I wanted to lift him up and hold him in my arms. I wanted him to know that everything was going to be ok, that he is loved, and prayed for, and admired, and held dear in so many hearts. I worried that maybe he was not wanting me to see him like this. But then, luckily, my mom's dear friend reminded me that he was probably feeling very comforted in the moment; he probably really did want me to read to him. He was probably feeling so safe and loved and supported and this touched him somewhere in his core. I understand his pain...I feel it too. Pain is universal, which allows us all to have compassion for each other and act in kindness. I know Matthew always acts out of compassion and kindness and now I hope he sees that his efforts are being reciprocated. I love him so very, very much.

I checked with Matthew's nurse tonight and he said that Matthew may have his breathing tube removed tomorrow. They are going to try to reduce his pain medication so that he can start breathing on his own again (the pain meds inhibit his drive to breathe). There is also a possibility that Matthew will have surgery tomorrow to temporarily pin his pelvis together. If this happens, though, he will not be removed yet from the breathing machine. I will continue to keep everyone posted. Please keep praying and sending your warm thoughts, wishes, and energy.


  1. This was beyond rough to read. Erin you are very strong and that's exactly what Matt needs right now. You just being there is all he needs. Matt and I were attached at the hip for awhile there until I moved back up to Northern CA and he had nothing but amazing things to say about you. He loves you, admires you, and looks up to you. I am so glad you are there and we all know he isn't alone. Desperate to get home and help in anyway I can.

  2. Hi Erin, don't know if you remmeber me, Isabel Papp. Meagan's mom. First let me ask you to give your Mom and Dad a big hug from me. Last time we shared tears at the airport when Matt and Meg went to I think we can't share enough tears. If you read the comments to him, please tell him my mom Gerda...we all went to see his first Musical Mamma Mia when we went to England to visit those two; and sends hugs. My sister Monika; he attended her son Sean's Holy First Communion and they have lit a candle at Our Lady of Guadalupe in Redondo Beach for him. Many prayers for getting through this for you all. Thank you for the blog.

  3. Very emotional reading this Erin and hard to put into words. You're an amazing sister to Matt and he adores you as I know you adore him. Thank you for being there for him and for updating us all. Your strength and love will make a very positive impact in Matt's recovery.

    Big hugs sent your way.

    Jasun and all of the Tipton family.

  4. Hi Erin, I am one of James' aunts, Colleen. My sister, Debbie, told me about Matthew's accident and asked for prayer. Then my other sister, Cathy, told me about your blog. It has been a blessing for me to hear your heart as you love your brother and your family through this difficult time. Matthew clearly has a strong support of love and care from his family, which no doubt must give him strength, motivation and encouragement through this battle. Your writings help us to know how specifically to pray for Matthew, for you and for your family, especially as we approach our own Christmas celebrations. Thank you for exposing such personal experiences and emotions with people who have never even met you. We will continue to pray and look forward to hearing updates of improvements along the way. God bless you and your family. Regards, Colleen Bales

  5. Hi Erin,

    I read about this blog on the Zero Hour forums. Even though I do not know you guys, I know to an extent what you are going through. 5 years ago something similar happened to someone close to me. The brother of my gf at the time got hit by a semi while on his bicycle ride home from school. Unfortunately he did not make it and died on his way to hospital.

    Seeing how much Jasun cares and him posting on the forums to keep Matthew in our thoughts and prayers made me figure that you guys can use all the support you can get over the holidays and beyond them, during Matthew's recovery. Now, I'm not much of a religious or praying man, but I do want you to know that my thoughts are with you, your family and all of Matthew's dear ones and I hope his road to recovery will be speedy.

    Regards from a major fan of Zero Hour from the Netherlands,
    Marcel 'Cello' Slaman

  6. Hi, Erin, Odette, and family.
    My name is Elisa' I am Roberta's sister. I live in Oregon. Roberta told me about Matthew's accident and challenges and I wanted to offer my share of love, prayers, and support. This is a beautiful blog and your words are poignant and loving. Know that there is caring and support from places you didn't even realize. Matthew will pull through because of this and because of his family. You are a terrific young lady. I hope to meet all of you one day. Love, Elisa


  8. Dear Erin, Sending you, Matthew and your family love and prayers from the White Family. I work in a hospital and I know that when you are with Matthew and talking to him, you are giving him so much strength. Your voice and touch are so important to him. When you tell him how much he is loved, your voice can help calm him and comfort him. We keep you in our prayers every day. Love, Carolyn (Justin's mom)

  9. Hello Erin,

    You don't know me, but I wrote an article on Matt's condition for the Reader. I am continuing to keep up with his recovery. Three months ago I was in that same ICU room, in a coma for three weeks. My wife, family, all heard those noises and saw the hurt and pain. I know it's hard, but I want to assure you that Matt knows, he might not be able to express it, but he knows, and the love you give will make him stronger. So keep reading to him, keep writing about him, keep all those that love him informed, because from my experience, seeing the love and hearing the encouragement helped me and I know it will help Matt. Dorian

  10. Hi Erin I'm Clyde Anthony, Meagan's brother. I first met your brother when he was going out with my sister. Gotta tell ya, yet, you already know, that your brother = class act, i always felt comfortable knowing that my sister was with him, he reminded me of a younger me, so full of life and i'm not saying I'm the nicest guy in town, but your bro is... My heart goes out to you, your mum and dad and especially Matt, I know what he's going through right now, I was hit as a pedestrian by a car that came up on the sidewalk and had to have brain surgery, thing is I never knew the worry and pain my family felt, I know it now by reading your pain and feeling like maybe I should thank my loved ones more often than I do... please let matt know, if you want to that I'm praying for him and I said get better, lot's more adventures await him...
    Merry Christmas to you and your family God Bless You all

  11. Dear Matthew, Erin, Tom and Odette,
    I thank you Erin for starting this-I believe the positive energy and love will help Matthew to heal and fight. Now that I am home and away from you, I think constantly of you and wish I were back with you. Erin, you are amazing-so loving and so grounded. Tom and Odette, I know you will draw on each other's strengths. I will continue to pray for all of you. Matthew, you are so very loved. Cathy

  12. Thanks so much for sharing these posts with us Erin. I know that myself, as well as the rest of Matt's friends, all wish we could be there next to him helping him through this. Helping him smile and laugh and joke about all the dumb ideas we have and the crazy things we've done together. And basically helping him be happy. But I'm sure that right now it means the world to him that his big sister is by his side.
    Lots of love,

  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

  14. Erin, you're a pixie on the outside and a lioness on the inside. Your parents did a wonderful thing for the world in bringing us you and Matthew.
    Our love is with all four of you, James, and your extended family.
    It must be difficult to write this blog but we are hanging on every word. Thank you. Please tell Matthew how much we want him to be well.

  15. How do you capture the power of a moment in words? Erin has such an amazing way of conveying her feelings through her writing. I can only imagine that the feeling and emotion of this were so much more powerful than words can convey. Four hours removed from this, Erin told me what happened. I listened intently, with tears streaming down my face. The intensity and raw emotion of what Erin experienced were palpable. I have been touched so deeply by this family. Their kindness and spirit have tuned me to the "universal" that Erin speaks of, in a deeper way than I could have ever imagined. I am eternally grateful to be Erin's partner, a part of the Kelly family and to have membership in this amazing community of people. The support, love and compassion for Matthew has been awe-inspiring.