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Kyle's healing

$5,610 of $6,000 goal

Raised by 97 people in 3 months
39401828_1562243136856882_r.jpegOn Saturday May 17 my 22 year old son accompanied friends to an after prom party for Flanagan High School. His friends and himself were at the party for less than five minutes when an unknown individual jumped out of a car and started firing.  Kyle was hit in his chest and his stomach with 40 calibur bullets. His friends got him to a gas station and called 911.  He almost bled to death on the sidewalk. The ambulance called in a near fatal shooting to Ryder Trauma Center. When he arrived they called me to speak to him. He told me he was dying, he loves me and he was sorry. This is my worst nightmare that i continually replay in my head. My screams were so loud that night that my 7 year old has had trouble sleeping since. Miraculously Kyle is ok. They did surgery and those bullets missed every major organ. They said he is lucky to be alive. The bad news is, the bullets injured his right arm and it's currently paralyzed. Neurosurgeons are being aggressive in physical therapy in hopes the nerves will regenerate. We are now left with months of physical therapy, possibly more surgeries, open wounds, and 30 stitches from his surgery to care for. He currently has to learn to live with one arm. We all also need counseling as my house is not as functional as previous. This money will be for all of our deductibles , Kyle's home needs to make him comfortable and counseling. I have to thank all of the support o have been given so far. It's been more than I could have imagined , as i am usually the giver to others.
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It's been a month since I updated. I recently have been getting texts asking about Kyle's progress. If i didn't reply I apologize, sometimes it gets overwhelming.
We are all doing a bit better .
Kyle has very little pain for the past 6 weeks or so. He is able to sleep and do his arm stretches and exercises a little easier with less pain. We still have physical therapy 3 times per week, which they say can continue for up to 3 years.
Mentally I think he is a tad better as well. We will start his counseling finally. He would like to contact the detective and watch the surveillance videos from that night. One is from a home near the shooting and shows everyone running. The other is the gas station where he was driven and he collapses. I will not be viewing either.
I have joined some FB support groups for Brachial Plexus injuries and have learned quite a bit. I have gotten lots of tips on how to do things one handed. Kyle is going to start facetiming for excercise tips as well. There are 975 paralyzed arms of adults in the group.
Anthony has started counseling. He was diagnosed with traumatic adjustment disorder, which is a pre curser to PTSD. He is doing better. But still will not be left alone in any room of the house.
Alyssa has decided to home school her senior year. She will be here in the event Kyle needs surgery. She still has insomnia since that day. But the crying has stopped for the most part. She does get upset from time to time that it's just not fair.
As for me, I'm just kinda sad and lost. I'm mad. The detectives have been on vacation for over 2 weeks. We have not heard a thing. Kyle wants me to not pursue it and just see what happens. He feels no one will snitch. And I'm the opposite. I want to relentlessly pursue it. He is afraid I will become bitter. Little does he know...
The next step is September 5. We see neurosurgery again. He last went in June. Kyle's arm is getting stronger inward movements. He can almost do a curl with a 5 pound weight. The hand is a tad stronger. But the hand has not a lot of feeling so he cannot get much use from it. The arm has zero outward movements. The fingers do not open from a fist, the wrist cannot be held up and the elbow area does not budge. So unfortunately there is no use from the arm. I believe he will need surgery.
We only know it's "probably a nerve transfer surgery" (which is 12 hours long). The surgery is about 87% successful in regaining the use. Of course we will get full details on Sept 5.
Once again, thank you everyone. My mom made a quick trip to Disney happen for Anthony and Alyssa. For family friends helping me to get into a car and for keeping Kyle company while I was away. And for all of the rides to Kyle's appointments. The help has been amazing.
I shall update once I know about surgery.
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So it's been 8 weeks this past weekend. I'm unsure if time goes by fast or slow. Sometimes it feels like the longest 8 weeks ever.
We got through the 4th of July and a multitude of appointments. We went to the specialist at neurofit which was the neurology Therapy Center that his current rehab referred him to. Unfortunately they said that they could not help Kyle. They deal with paralysis patients however Kyle's is a specific type of spinal cord injury that they don't have much experience with. So we are staying at the current rehab for now.
As of today Kyle no longer needs the wound care specialist. She came every single day for the past 8 weeks and packed that wound. It started as 5 cm deep by three and a half centimeters wide. A gaping hole in his stomach. Today it ends at .5 x .25. She announced that she was done coming to the house. It was a bittersweet moment as she has become quite a friend to Kyle. He vented to her and cried to her and she even had to call 911 one day cuz he fainted on her. But it's a step in the right direction ,one more thing checked off the list.
The main question I get is if Kyle can currently use his arm. The answer still remains no. The arm doesn't lift from his side ,there's no outward movement of the fingers, of the wrist or of the elbow. He's gaining more inward movement meaning he can do a curl holding a 3-pound weight halfway. The hand is also getting stronger. We have purchased a lot of devices that they use in rehab so he can do exercises with the hand at home to strengthen it. So we just continue to wait for the nerves to heal themselves. We are hoping for outward movements before our next neurosurgery appointment. That appointment is September 5th. If there's no progress of the arm being able to function then it looks like he will be having surgery past that date. I have read a little about the surgery and it seems really big but I decided to stop Googling and just listen to the doctor once that date arrives and work on the arm for now.
We did see a pain specialist also and he agreed that he could do an injection for Kyle's pain. We made that appointment for July 29th. The injection goes into the front of his neck and near the spinal cord. He doesn't relish the thought of this injection but wants to try it to see if it helps with the pain. If it helps with the pain that will help with his therapy. His pain definitely has gotten slightly better. He no longer wakes me up in the night. But he does greet me at my bedroom door in the morning LOL.
Another question I get asked is how everybody is doing mentally. At this point Kyle is more angry and frustrated that he can't do things that he used to do. He would like to be able to shower a nice shower on his own. And he would like to be able to play video games. I found a foundation called ablegamers and they help paralysis patients to be able to play video games. I checked into their resources and was able to obtain a specialized controller for the Xbox. For the first time in 8 weeks Kyle was able to play a video game. He was a bit frustrated cuz he was slow and it wasn't like it was before but I suppose it's a learning curve. His friends were around him and were very excited though that he was able to sit in front of his TV with that Xbox controller in his hand the way they had done earlier in the day before he was shot. It did choke me up to go into Kyle's bedroom and see the back of his head watching the TV holding the controller. It was like seeing my old Kyle.
Anthony is still having a rough time. He has a breakdown once a week approximately and he won't sleep or going to his room by himself. He told me today that he feels scared that this will happen to somebody else in the family. I have reached out to his pediatrician and they are setting him up with counseling. Hopefully he starts that within the next week or two.
Alyssa is definitely feeling better. Her anxiety has died down a bit. The only thing she's left with is a general sadness for Kyle. She's a strong girl.
As for me and Rick we feel like we've been in a war that we did not win. I think we're emotionally tired. It's up to the parents to be sure that the kids are okay. So that's our main objective. But meanwhile I've been having a little bit of PTSD myself. Sometimes I cry on my way to work and sometimes I don't. Sometimes I can't sleep and sometimes I can. My main issue is I hear Kyle's voice in the middle of the night in my sleep say "mommy help me. " And I fly up out of my bed but when I look around it was just a dream. I can hear it so clear and I can hear it right now as I write this. I know it's ridiculous because it's been 8 weeks but I still just cannot believe this.
Tomorrow I am reaching back out to Crime Stoppers to see if we can produce a flyer for a reward for any information leading to the shooter. We have a general motive. But we don't know who. And I won't stop until this person has to look my entire family in the face to see how he's changed our lives. There is nothing new from the detectives.
So again thank you all for asking and caring about the updates. I will continue to update as we go along. Thank you for all of your help every single Cent has gone towards the care of Kyle.
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Happy 4th of July everyone. This is a day we celebrate America and all that comes with it....like freedom. I truly hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday .
Kyle, unfortunately, will have a hard time celebrating his freedom. As he was the victim of a possible hate crime. A crime for what he was wearing that night.
The shooter shot more than 10 rounds trying to kill him. And most likely for what he was wearing.
In the past 2 weeks Kyle's arm has made such little progress that the physical therapists are now referring him to Neurofit. This is a neurology center for spinal cord and paralysis injuries. Problem is, it's cash pay at $130 per visit. For some reason they don't accept insurance. I have been researching other centers like it and have found none other than Memorial, where my insurance is not accepted.
Any continued help is life changing for Kyle. Time is of the essence in an injury like this, as the first 6 months are the most critical in getting use back from the arm.
Thank you all and happy 4th. Have a drink for us.
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6 weeks today. Sometimes it seems like yesterday and sometimes it seems like an eternity.
As far as Kyle's physical issues....his rib cage has definitely healed some. The pain there and in his pelvis has subsided. He still gets dizzy and nauseous and we can only assume it is his meds at this point or attributed to the constant nerve pain. His blood pressure has come down by 10 points with the new hypertension medication. The arm still does not move. The hand,
Fingers and wrist can all move inward but not out. The brachial plexus is a spinal cord injury effecting C5 and C7, which both effect outward movements of the fingers, wrist, and elbow. That will be the last to come back if it does. The hand has definitely gotten a bit stronger. There is no sensation in the fingers, they are not numb, but they cannot decipher differences in materials or objects. His wound care nurse still comes daily. The wound is now 1cm deep and looks a lot smaller.
We are in a cycle of PT three times a week and we started acupuncture. He went to his first acupuncture appointment this week. That day he was pain free FOR THE FIRST TIME. It lasted through the night. The next day the pain was unbearable and I had to rush home mid day and help him. But. I am unsure if its a coincidence or not, but it's been 4 nights since acupuncture and these are the first 4 nights he has not woken me. So we shall go back next week.
Kyle is having nightmares. He dreams of being shot and dying. One dream imparticular bothered him because he says in the dream he was dying slowly and his arm was painful. He couldn't wake up from it. When he woke up he wasn't sure if he was alive.
I have been back to work and we are juggling finding transportation to these appointments. The insurance finally picked up the PT so now it's a copay rather than full price. However acupuncture took the place of that because insurance does not cover that. I have missed a ton of work so that has also proven difficult.
Alyssa is trying to adjust. She has been so strong but now we are trying to get her back on her feet. She has started to have anxiety attacks when she is out of the house. She feels the need to get out of crowded places. I have her journaling to try and get her feelings out. She says the shock is wearing off and she just cannot believe this happened to us.
Anthony is doing much better. He just won't be left alone often in any room of the house.
The detectives have not much. One theory, and it's a theory, is that Kyle was targeted for what he was wearing that night. That is disgusting to me. Makes me physically ill to think about it.
And so we continue on.....thank you everyone for the continued support.
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