Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Day 234 - Jan 20, 2009

It's kinda been a rough day. I don't know why, but I am just down today. I suppose I'm just tired, not sure.

But anyway, Kevin had an ok day. We stayed in and I cooked dinner tonight and all was good for us until we were looking at some photos I picked up today. Kevin started crying again when he saw the pic of him with Breezy and I kissing him (the one I uploaded the other day). I couldn't get him to stop and he demanded to go back to the hospital and go to bed. I took that time to follow the advice on the blog here and forced him to go into the shower room and look at himself long and hard in the full length mirror. He just cried harder, but I made him keep his eyes on himself and let it all out. We were in there a good 15 minutes or so and he did eventually slow down enough to at least hear me say that it can mostly be fixed. As mentioned here, I had him point to the areas on his face that he wants changed. He just kept circling the whole thing at first, but then I showed him that it wasn't ALL bad - just the side of his head, his ear, his eyes and his chin area need cosmetic repairs.

I wish I could say that after he cried he was fine, but it really doesn't work that way. It will take a long time for him to not be shocked and appalled when he looks in a mirror. It will also take a while to get past the 'why me?' and the 'this sucks' stage too. He will need to accept the changes in himself and I just need to keep my eye on the line between working toward that acceptance and falling into a depression. It's gonna be a tough one, that's for sure. Especially because I cry with him every time he does. I just can't imagine what it's like to 'wake up' and look nothing like yourself. I know how hard it is for me to see him too right now and I've had 8 months to adjust to the changes - he is just now starting to see them so he has a ways to go.

Anyway, here are some pics from yesterday and today. The first one is Kevin holding Breezy in a headlock earlier today. It was so hysterical, lol:

This one is Kevin standing up down at my room at the house. I still don't remember him being that tall...

And the next two are of him at Red Lobster.

Looking good, huh?

And I am going to finish up with a couple of questions. First to BigD - I sure hope your son is doing well. My nephew had leukemia years ago and he is doing so well now. Keep your chin up! That goes for you too, Petra!!

Miss Em - you asked about Kevin's candy choices, lol. He seems to love all that sour stuff. Ya know - sour gummi worms, that sour tape like stuff (like fruit by the foot) and sour patch kids. He also loves gummi bears. Truth be told - if it's edible, he likes it! LOL!

Jan - you mentioned Kevin's new confidence might be keeping people from staring and I would hazard a guess that that could be part of it. He just doesn't look as sick anymore, kwim? Even his eyes are clearer, if that makes any sense.

Ok - it's off to bed for me...


Anonymous said...

Looking Great! Thoughts and prayers always with you. Nicole

LisaD said...

I can't imagine how hard it must be for him, and for you. I hope he believes us strangers when we say that we don't see what he sees in the mirror. I see someone amazing and beautiful that fills me with hope for what is possible and pride and gratitude that I am an American that has warriors like him fighting for us. I see his smile, and his eyes full of life and mischief..and I see him standing there tall and strong like nothing could knock him down. I also see two women that he should kiss more often because the three of you are a force to be reckoned with.

Alison said...

Kevin, you are looking great, bud. Don't worry about what the mirror says. The cosmetic stuff can AND WILL BE fixed up in no time. But honestly, you are looking so good. Always nice to see that smile.

Vicki C said...

Kevin looks Great! I love the photo of you and him.. really sweet! He IS tall! and it's awesome to see him standing like that!

Anonymous said...

Well said, LisaD! Kevin is beautiful, inside and out!
Wendy (Clarion, PA)

Jodi said...

I agree! LisaD said it VERY well! My thoughts exactly.

Stay tough Kevin! I think you look fantastic, and your smile brightens my day! The cosmetic stuff will be fixed.

Hang in there Les. You did the right thing and will continue to do so. Kevin is making it thru this because of you and Breezy. You are an amazing family...

Here is to a great day today!

Healing and positive thoughts for Kevin.
Strength and comfort for Leslie and Breezy.
Safe thoughts for all military personnel and strength for their families.
Andrew's Aunt Jodi

Kris said...

Lookin good is an understatement!!! WOW what wonderful pics. Kevin you don't just look good - you honest and truly look FANTASTIC!!! And to see you STANDING!! Incredible. Just incredible. YOU ROCK.

Yes, his eyes do look clearer, and nice and big and gorgeous and full of love too.

We're all out here praying for you and praying with you, each and every day. God bless you Kevin, Leslie and Breezy, BIG GIANT hugs are coming your way all day every day. Hope today is going better and that you managed to get some rest, Leslie.

- Kris, a Soldiers' Angel from RI

Miss Em said...

Leslie, Kevin,

Leslie you will have to do the mirror bit quite a few more times so Kevin can get past what is seen in the mirror and truly SEE that the outside can be fixed.
AND don't forget the hair brush. It will make Kevin actually look at his face and head. That way he will begin to access that which needs to be fixed and be able to make his desires known to the Cosmetic Surgeon.

Kevin, that which is on the inside will shine out as always...A person full of mischievous fun with an intelligent mind that will find a way to overcome what has been put in his way. A person who has heart-felt love for his sister and Mom who is un-ashamed in showing it to them.
**Think POSITIVE. It's going to take time and determination to get past the tears and anger.

Kevin you made it threw boot camp.
You made it out of an IED explosion.
You made it past several Crisis Points.
You have proven to many that their judgements of you were below your capabilities.
You WILL succeed in overcoming this as long as you DON'T GIVE UP.

Kevin, the Army made you a man and gave you a man's ability to accept responsibilties.
Now, God is going test you in those abilities.


Accept--what has been done. Doesn't mean you can't 'Bitch' about it.

Improvise--look around and see what is available. Take a real good look-cobble, hook and jerry-rig what you find to make it work.

Impliment--put everything into use.
Which does not mean suck it up. It means 'Bust your ass soldier'

This is your job. DO IT.

O-kay, I get off my soap box now.
Kevin, you can do this.


Miss Em
Austell, Ga.

The Rock said...

Hi Leslie
Been catching up with your Blog from the last couple of days. Wow, Kevin got dressed all by himself ! That is just wonderful Leslie !
You all came so far in these
( I am sure LONG ) 234 days. And you are a strong Family and became stronger through all this .
Surely , it was a shock for him when he saw himself in the Mirror. But he is alive; and to me he is beautiful ! He is a Warrior and he paid a high prize for all of us. And the next time someone stares at you all, tell them with a friendly smile " My son is a Hero, do you have anyone in the service?"
I am sure that Military people wouldn't stare , because we know what happens in WAR . But so many people are just ignorant when it comes to visible Injuries.
So, just keep that smile on your face ! The pictures are great, he is very tall !LOL, You and Breezy look like midgets next to him ! He does have that smile and it shows his inner beauty. Besides, he will not be like this forever . It takes time and patience ! Which sucks, but that is the way it is . Kevin is my Inspiration .
Seems like Kevin loves to eat ! That's just great !
Maybe one day you come to Louisiana and I cook you all some good Cajun Seafood !
You have to try my GUMBO !
Or I come one day and cook for you all! LOL . I mean it !

scsoldiersangel said...

Kevin, Hang in there buddy! You are a good looking guy. That smile will melt the girls hearts! Keep staying strong!

Long-time RN said...

Looking Great is right!

Kevin's bright eyes and smile radiate personality and expression.

You're doing an incredible job, Leslie. The picutre with Kevin standing is proof of endurance and love. Hang tough and hope your spirits are lifted.

Thoughts and prayers.

Jessica said...

I know it's good that Kevin is more self-aware but it sucks that he has to go through this. At least the cosmetic things can be fixed eventually. And I love to see him seeing tall and proud!

I'll be praying for Kevin as he goes through the grieving process of what he has lost. I pray God will strengthen and comfort him and help you and Breezy to walk him through this trial.

Anonymous said...

Hi Les,

I am so glad that you, Breezy, and Kevin are making the most of each and every day. No matter anyone's situation, it is important to enjoy each day we are given!!

Kevin has come such a LONG way! I think he looks awesome!!! From day one, he was such a fighter...imagine what he will do in day 365!!!

I am sorry I have not been on top of your situation. I have been preoccupied with other issues as of late, but you are in my thoughts and prayers every day.

We all miss you at work!!!...I could have used your back-up the other day...I will tell you about it sometime...remind me about "FF".

Take care & God Bless

Kristen M. and family

Anonymous said...

At the risk of sounding silly, I ask this question. What does Kwim mean?

I have seen it a few days in the blog and remain clueless lol

Kevin is looking great! Beyond great really!

Is he getting counseling for all these feelings he has about everything?

I hope he knows how very grateful we all as Americans are to him!

He remains my ( and I am sure many other peoples ) Hero!