PenDell With His Medical Recovery
PenDell and Melanie have over the years, become some of our dearest friends. Both amazing people on their own and an incredable couple together.
Like many of us, current medical insurance options just don't cover near enough of the costs involved if somethng tragic happens. Added to that fact is that both Melanie and PenDell are self employed. Basically all income has stopped during this tragic period . . . a double hit.
Here is what Melanie posted about the situation on Facebook.
"For the last three weeks, I have been holding vigil with my beloved husband, PenDell <3 Three weeks ago, I took him to the emergency room with slurred speech and mental confusion. He was diagnosed with a stroke. However, through many challenging symptoms and events over the last two weeks, it has been re-diagnosed as viral meningitis.
I know that we have a road ahead that is completely unpredictable and unknown. I am strong in faith that he will heal and restore - he has beenfilled with grace, gratitude and determination through this.
The infection is still active in his brain. He has a hard time expressing himself in words... how ironic! He still experiences confusion and gets disoriented.
It seemed time to reach out so that all who know and love PenDell can hold him in your loving care."
I have asked Melanie's permision to start this campaign on their behalf. The money will go to medical expenses, recovery expenses and living expenses.
I am asking that if either one of these amazing people have touched your life, in even just a fraction of how much they have touched ours, that you help me in both spreading the message, and giving of your hearts and pocketbooks to one of the most worthy causes I am aware of, community members in need.
And if you haven't had the privlage of meeting either of these people, please don't let that stop you. Your community is reaching out for help, anything you can do to help is so greatly appreciated.
About me: Both my wife and I have been friends with the PenDell's for a number of years now. PenDell and I often have coffee (or tea) together on a weekly basis, Melanie and Vivian often see each other weekly, and the four of us spend time together generally weekly as well. PenDell is like a family member to both of us . . . the kind you actually like to spend time with. :-)
I started this campaign because I dearly love these two people and they need help. 100% of the money is going to the Pittman family and I am not able to withdraw any of it myself. Malanie has been added to the account as the only person able to withdraw.
As this journey continues, PenDell and I are surrounded by extraordinary wonder and grace. At one level, PenDell is re-learning how to use a washer and dryer and where all the dishes belong in the kitchen... again and again. At another level, PenDell is living his highest vision and beliefs. There may be those who could see his thoughts and visions as illusions created by massive brain injury. However, as I listen to him and watch him heal and evolve in exponential leaps, I see it as wonder and grace.
For me, at one level I am stressing hard over finances and things at that frequency. At another level, I am in such a strong sense of purpose with PenDell... and filled with wonder and grace. I am using guided meditation, yoga, walking Sadie, breathing, and being with PenDell to navigate this path.
Erin's experience is her own... she is courageous and determined!
Evan is ever steady and strong...
PenDell and I sang How Shall We Give Thee Glory together tonight. We are not in voice right now but we sang!
PenDell completed home health therapy and is fully engaged in outpatient therapy. The therapy gym is only about three minutes away from our house, which is helpful. I am able to run back home and have a call with a client or get some work done then I go back over to bring him home.
During the last visit to the neurologist we were told that PenDell would need to continue with the chemotherapy infusions because of the new inflammation that was shown with the recent MRI. PenDell and I have meditated, talked and prayed about that and have chosen to continue without the chemotherapy. PenDell is getting better every day. His thoughts are more clear, his speech is more clear, he is having far less trouble finding words. So, we are feeling confident about taking these steps forward. We did start acupuncture and will soon add light therapy.
PenDell sees each day of his life as a gift and a privilege. He is filled with gratitude and awe. I am privileged and honored to be at PenDell's side in this journey. We are both aware, and becoming more aware each day, that this is a blessed opportunity for both of us.
We are so grateful for all of you, each of you. Thank you for continuing to hold us, love us, pray with us, and just being here...
Love, Love, Love!
The Green Tarp
PenDell and I love to have a fire in the evenings. Thursday night, I went around to the side of the house to get wood and the green tarp that I had put over the wood (apparently, not very securely) was not there. I looked up and saw the cord that was used to secure one of the corners was hanging toward the other side of the fence. I realized that the green tarp must have blown over the neighbor's fence in the wind.
You see, PenDell took care of that... he always had the tarp secured to the fence with bungee cords and weighted on the bottom with something. Well, I had only tied the corners, no weight in the bottom and we have had some extreme wind these last several days and nights.
So, I sent a text to my neighbor Emilia, who lost her husband this past year, apologizing that my tarp had blown over and asking if I could come collect it. Emilia called laughing. She said that she woke up early a couple of days ago and saw the green tarp all over the yard (it's a big tarp) and she called a big, tall, strong friend to come and help her wrap it back around the canoe. She didn't understand how it had come loose or why Chuck (her husband) had one corner tied to the fence nevertheless she and her friend got the tarp very securely wrapped back around the canoe! She said that I could come over and she would help me unwrap it from the canoe but that we might need a big, tall, strong man to help us. Shortly after we had hung up, Emilia called back and said rather than unwrap the canoe, she would just replace the tarp suggesting that this would be much easier than unwrapping the green tarp from the canoe! She then realized that it was quite likely that Chuck would have had tarps in the shed. The next thing I know, Emilia is at the front door with not one but two tarps... neither of which is bright green! We laughed, cried, and hugged. I am grateful that Emilia and I had that moment.
This story is our life right now. We are doing our best to keep everything moving in a progressive direction and some days the tarp blows away and we accept and move on and do what we need to do to continue moving forward and keep the wood dry! It may not be our tarp or the way that we thought things would be but we are okay and our life is richly blessed.
PenDell had an MRI about ten days ago. The results are not what we had hoped for. The new neurologist was hoping to get PenDell off of the Chemotherapy infusion but the results show new areas of active inflammation so he is discussing what the next steps are with other doctors and we will talk on February 15th when PenDell and I go down to Denver for his appointment. I asked the doctor what I should do. He said that I am telling him that PenDell is better every day so we should keep doing whatever we are doing and he will work on what else we need to do.
We are working with supplementation and are making appointments or looking into acupuncture, craniosacral, light therapy, and a medical intuitive. We are blessed by friends who are offering guidance and supporting us in these directions.
PenDell is ready to do whatever it takes. His magnificent high-functioning mind comes through so brilliantly at times and in the next moment things can often go sideways.
We work on his therapy routines together. We laugh together. We cry together. We talk. I learn, he learns. We expand. We stay in Faith that the way will continue to be shown - one moment at a time.
Thank you for your ever-present and ongoing support. We feel the blessing of your love, your thoughts, your prayers. I am, as ever, grateful for each of you and how you bless my way in times when you may not even be aware <3
Love, Love, Love,
PenDell and Melanie on Steroids...
I wrote this on January 20th…
PenDell has been exploring. He opens drawers and finds things. He finds things and takes them out of the drawer… and puts them someplace else. This is not a problem, really - until we need whatever he has found and re-placed. I don’t know where he has put it and he can’t remember where he put it because in the times that he is re-placing things in the house, he must be in a different part of his brain because the object in his hand and the place that he chooses to put it do not always add up. Sometimes we laugh when he realizes what has happened, sometimes he shows a glimmer of WTF, sometimes...
Tonight, I was getting ready to go to bed... (and by that I mean go sleep on the couch - oh wait, I am not sure I mentioned that here, oh well, more on that later!) … when I realized that the disaster that is currently my house was never going to go away until I started working on it. It is daunting, there is so much to do; filing, folding, hanging, sorting, more filing, deciding.
Hmm, that word brought up something interesting. There are now major areas of our life where deciding is no longer a part of what we can do because we don’t know where this is going.
So, anyway, I started by putting two baskets of clothes away. It was tricky getting going because I don’t know where anything goes yet in this new space - which is about to become something other than what I thought it was becoming!
Things have been continuing to move forward. I see progress in some area with PenDell daily. Then, yesterday (now January 19th) PenDell had a rough day. I could tell that morning that PenDell’s energy was different. I asked him if he was okay and he said that he was fine.
The plan that morning included that the Occupational Therapist was coming for his session and I had a call with a client at the same time.
The therapist arrived and I joined my call.
The call ended early, which was wonderful because it meant I could go out to the dining room to participate and observe the PenDell’s session. When I got out there, PenDell was regressing quickly, like right in front of our eyes.. He was becoming dazed and confused and, while he recognized that there was a problem, he was unable to override it. He was aware that he was losing function but he couldn’t do anything about it. I looked him in the eye and told him that something was happening and that I needed him to listen to me and stay present with me. He did the best he could to push through what was happening and stay with me. I quickly realized that he needed sleep.
As I write this I am realizing that perhaps a more sane person would have called the doctor and piled PenDell in the car and gone to the emergency room. However, I am likely not completely sane at this point and I have to follow my instincts/intuition. My instincts and intuition got me through quite a bit of this journey thus far.
Gratefully, after he slept for about ninety minutes, he got up to eat lunch and was slightly better. He ate lunch and then went right back to bed and slept for another five hours. When he woke up to have dinner, he was far more stable. He went back to bed and this morning (January 20th), he was back to baseline.
Today is January 30th…
I realized as I read through the post above that the day that PenDell had the episode marked six months from the day that we walked into the emergency room on August 19th.
I am deeply, like deep in places that I didn’t know I had, grateful in this experience.
A week ago, on Sunday, PenDell and I went out to a restaurant for lunch for the first time. At first, the noise was pretty stressful for him. His sense of hearing has been affected in that it is quite acute! This is good news as this amazing musician had lost some of the edge to his hearing, and it is a challenge in that every single sound affects him… more on that in a minute. So, he was able to bring the background noise into a rhythm that was manageable and we had a perfectly precious and lovely time sitting side-by-side in a booth talking for over an hour. As we were leaving he asked me if we had ever had a honeymoon. I told him that we had not. He said that this time together would mark the beginning to our honeymoon for the rest of our lives… doesn’t get much better! (We agreed that we would bring earplugs on our next outing, which we did yesterday and it went very well!)
I mentioned the disaster of my house and the rearrangement of rooms and PenDell’s sensitivity to noise. Well, as it turns out, my breathing in bed next to him was keeping him awake. There is also the factor of our dog, Sadie, who snores quite robustly and sleeps where I sleep. So, as I came to understand that my sleeping in a different room was not just for a few nights, I realized that more rearranging was needed! I am so grateful for our house and the fact that we have room for me to make the changes that we need!
I have set up a sweet bedroom space for myself right next door to PenDell and my office is now just at the base of the stairs where I can still hear him and he can call out to me. I have a fireplace in my office space now. I set up a chair where, once I get things set up to the point where I can light a fire, I will invite PenDell to come down and read by the fire while I work.
I was thinking as I wrote this post that perhaps I am being too transparent. This is a raw and unfiltered time for me and that is what I write! I thank each and every one of you for touching in when you can. Ann Foorman continues to come and spend a few hours a couple of times a week… beyond generous.
Most days, I am “normal” some days, like today, I could cry for no apparent reason. We are figuring things out one day at a time. We are profoundly blessed. Love, Love, Love.
He has finished reading two books already, The Four Agreements and The Gift of Forgiveness. He talks to me about the books and what stirs in his thoughts. He is forming complete thoughts and connecting those thoughts to words and conveying his message clearly.
I mentioned to Ann (Foorman) that his speech therapist had used the cards from the game Taboo as one of her exercises with him so Ann brought her Taboo over and played with PenDell. He is really good at it!
I am doing some rearranging of rooms and furniture to accommodate our current needs and flow. In order to keep things as streamlined as possible for PenDell during this process, the room that is becoming my office / dressing room / sanctuary space is currently a disaster! It is very dangerous to set anything down because it will definitely be swallowed up into the random chaos that is momentarily controlling this space! And, I am being kind to myself about it... I am accepting that I really can only do what I can do and then the day ends... and then the next day begins and we go forward.
This week, I realized that I am grieving. Grieving the loss of the life we had, the relationship we had, the plans we had... most of all, the loss of PenDell as he was. I am not sad and I love who we are becoming, but there has also been loss.
We saw the neurologist that I worked hard to get PenDell in to see. Evan arranged for us to stay in a hotel across the street from the hospital because it was an early morning appointment in south Denver. Then Evan met us for the appointment. It was wonderful to have his support as I am navigating so many new things. We are all very glad that we chose this doctor. He specializes in autoimmune. He spoke to us of ongoing treatment to which I said that I thought the treatment was only 6 - 12 months! He said that because this condition is rare, they don't have experience with what the prognosis is so they recommend ongoing, long term treatment. Digesting that one...
We are learning. We are learning what the rhythm is to our day. We are learning when we can see friends and for how long. We are learning that more than two friends at a time is too much. We are learning that if we don't look at PenDell when we are talking, he will likely not be able to follow the conversation... We are learning.
Ann is so generously making time during the week to come and be with PenDell while I run errands, walk Sadie or work. I am still catching up (if that is really even possible)!
I am grateful. PenDell is grateful. Even amidst all that has and is happening, we are experiencing blessings in all ways.
We are receiving our wonder-filled life one moment at a time! So much love to each of you.
I am so deeply grateful for this most generous outpouring of support ♥ We are watching and praying as the doctors search for the source of the inflammation in PenDell's brain. Thank you for your donations, thank you for your prayers, thank you for your love. I send my love back to you now as well.
I am grateful to the Source of Life for PenDell as he is in this moment, held by a host of angelic beings - all of you, more, and those who are not visible to us. Thank you Melanie and Garret for all your communication; blessings to you, Evan, Erin and all who love PenDell as we hold him and you in love, trusting, abiding.
I've been staying in touch with the current postings from Melanie and was so happy to know that PenDell's progress was and is increasing---though slow but certain. And yesterday, I saw the video of him walking with his walker and, I must say that he looks GREAT. I'm so glad to see he is recovering so well---and before we know it, PenDell will be up and about again---as he was before this situation occurred. You are an angel, Melanie, watching over him day and night, being by his side every step of the way. Your patience, strength and unconditional love shine through you. You are both in my thoughts daily with much love. It was a joy to hear PenDell sing---most beautiful. Thank you, Melanie, for keeping us posted.
Melanie...it is so inspiring to hear PenDell sing and even more inspiring to experience your unconditional love for him...he is so blessed by your companionship.......(from David)....we are so closely with you..... D&D
Melanie...we are closely with you in the this process and we give thanks for the rehab hospital and for the vibrational support he has received from you and from so many others. Keep on, keeping on.......you are loved and so is our beloved PenDell.
Enfolding you both in love and light! Keep moving Blessed Ones!
I know this isn't easy. Life can turn on a dime and then there's a whole new set of circumstances to handle. Just know that my love is with you all! Steve Berlin :O)
We continue to enfold you both in love - Bill & Linda
Thank you, Melanie. About transparency of what you share, you might consider to keep certain sharings within the Attunement Group plus womeone(s) especially close to you. Also, you might contact Tom Kenyon who has a number of sound healing recordings accessible at his website tomkenyon.com. Ask his recommendation. PenDell might connect with one or two. I've used "Immunity" and "Soma" all through my 10yrs of brain injury healing. These two you might have to buy or download (which I do not know how to do). The two I listen to at his site are "AStream from the Higher World" and "Aetherium." If you want t visit the site and sample, I could give you exact guidance how to get to these recordings from his home page." -- Heartfelt Blessing to you both.
Dearest Melanie, I hold your conversations (for I feel that is what they are) with us so deeply sacred. Your tender heart is safe with me and I feel truly blessed that you can share your soul as you do. I continue to hold you both close, always conscious that that closeness still gives space for what your life is now, and what it may be in the moments to come. ♥ Iris
Hi Melanie - Thank you for this most recent post. I admire you and love how you are living so in the here and now...unfiltered. What courage you and Pendell exhibit. I felt blessed to read your words this morning as I tuned into your beings.
Melanie...you are NOT being too transparent;you are being REAL and, I for one, appreciate this deeply. What a helpmate you are for this lovely man!Diane and I continue to hold you so closely.
Lots of love and light coming your way! I the spirit of out friend, "Keep moving blessed ones". :O)
I am so glad to have this update and fully resonate with the sense of loss, yes, not so sad, yet is a loss. I recently wrote an article called Passionate Grief for Epic magazine in Durango. It is in the current issue. Anyway, my heart is with you both and your family as you continue in the learning process and navigate new waters... I am officially moving to Sedona AZ at the end of this month. With my daughter and family in Utah now as of August, and my son leaving this summer, Spirit has called me here in this season of my life. I trust the process as is so obvious that you do as well. I am in Sedona now taking care of relocation biz, then back to Durango for final packing and closure. My son is helping me. I am so thankful for what I know to be true, absolutely, in the Spirit of the Living God. That has gotten me through so much, particularly the last few years of huge life transition. So many blessings bestowed upon us all. I am grateful to share in the wonder of this process of Life with you. Lots of love, Leia Meryt
The best news ever! Love to you both. ♥
Continuing love for both of you during this time--Love that is timeless and beyond distance. Thank you for the updates and the open sharing of your heart.
I deeply empathize. I have been recovering from brain injury which occurred 10 years ago. Over 700 seizures later, I am excited about the prospect of breaking my record of 85 seizure-free days. From day one doctors have had no answers for therapy direction. I followed a path of my own creation, quite alone in the process. Finally, I met up with Dr. Axe at his website. He suggested inflammation of my Pituitary as cause because MRI's shown nothing, and that I might give Lithium Orotate a trial--a simple trace element. I have felt an increasing clarity since. I will stay on it a full 90 days regardless of clear I finally feel now. I recommended it for PenDell several weeks ago. I won't mention it again.