Saturday, May 17, 2008

18 Candles

Some of you may remember that back in January I posted about the tragic events that occurred concerning my 17 year old cousin Nicole.  

I haven't talked a lot about it on this blog simply due to the need for privacy and the concern for her safety, as she was a victim of a crime.  

However, now, nearly six months later, a lot has changed, and I feel a little bit more comfortable talking about it.  Nicole has made such amazing improvements, especially in the last couple of months.  It is incredible how much she and those around her have endured since November 30th, and even more incredible are the odds that Nicole has overcome.  

We had doctors and nurses telling us that she would never be more than a tragedy whose most basic body processes barely function.  They implied that she would never get out of that hospital bed . . . that she would never be able to smile or laugh or put her arms around us for a hug . . . that she would be fed through a tube in her stomach for the rest of her life . . .

. . . yesterday was Nicole's 18th birthday.  When I arrived at the rehab facility, she was in the therapy room with two occupational therapists, sitting up mostly on her own, making a birthday craft.  It was a butterfly, which she had already colored, and was in the process of gluing on sequins to the wings.  One of the therapists asked her to say who I was, but she was a bit tired, and she's only barely begun relearning to use her voice.  So on her dry erase board, she wrote "Corry."

Back in her room, we looked at pictures, watched Looney Toons videos on youtube on my phone, and were just generally silly and full of laughs.  

And Nicole knows that Corry isn't Corry if she doesn't have her camera with her . . . so we had a little bit of fun with that, too!

Happy Birthday Nicole! You are my miracle!

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