"Hope" is the thing with feathers--
That perches in the soul--
And sings the tune without the words--
And never stops—at all--
And sweetest—in the Gale—is heard--
And sore must be the storm--
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm--
I've heard it in the chillest land--
And on the strangest Sea--
Yet, never, in Extremity,
It asked a crumb—of Me.
Time has stood still for us, but we are ready to get back to North Manchester and the normal rhythm of life. Since bringing Elizabeth back to the hotel room, we have been rather quiet, letting Elizabeth control what we do. As anticipated, she is sleeping quite a bit, but remarkably, she is not requiring much pain medication. Even though she can have pain killers every three hours, she seems content with Tylenol. Yesterday, she wanted to get out, so we took the free shuttle from our hotel to the Mayo Clinic. Under the clinic are two miles of tunnels that connect a variety of buildings together including little shops. Brian pushed her around in a wheel chair, but she still tired relatively fast. An hour was enough for her. Today, she was craving French fries, so we took her to Applebee's for lunch. Again, we came home after lunch, and she went right to sleep.
Besides being tired, the left side of her face has been swollen and black. She moves slowly and sometimes she confuses words. For example, this morning, after taking a bath, she asked me, "How do I drown this water?" Several times I asked her what she wanted to do, she repeated, "drown the water." Once I corrected her and said, "drain the water," she remembered. These situations are few and far between, but a few times she has mentioned that she does not feel smart. She knows she is processing slowly. The surgeon told us to expect this type of speech delay, and with time, she will improve, especially as the swelling goes down.
We plan on driving home tomorrow after her appointment, most likely stopping tomorrow evening somewhere in between Rochester and home. Our family would like to thank each of you for your thoughts and prayers. While in Minnesota, Elizabeth has received cards, flowers, pictures, balloons, and boxes of goodies (food, music, and sparkle sweatshirts), and even a little money for her parents "to get a drink." She has had numerous text messages, emails, and Facebook messages. She feels hopeful about recovery, and looks forward to taking it easy at home. Thank you, friends, thank you.