It baffles my mind. Really, it’s so difficult for me to get a grip on it.
It was 5½ years ago that Ryan was last in Morgantown, WV. The last day was when he was discharged from Ruby Memorial Hospital’s ICU (to Shepherd Center Rehab ICU) in late-November 2009 seems like a lifetime ago. You know, I suppose it was a lifetime ago in a very real sense.
At least a different lifetime.
Ryan left the town and university (WVU) he loved so much in a medically-equipped airplane. An ICU in the sky.
That all changes later this week… I hope so, anyhow. I won’t know for sure until the morning of the day I want to take him back. I can only hope that Ryan up for the trip. My daughter, Kari, is graduating.
It would be heartbreaking for me (and Ryan) to miss this. Sadly, we already missed attending her high school graduation in person. I watched it from a live, streaming video feed on my laptop in Ryan’s hospital room. I remember breaking down in tears as she crossed the stage. I cursed Ryan’s attackers, Austin Vantrease and Jonathan May (both of Newark, Delaware), for denying my family from sharing this with my daughter.
So, I intend to do everything possible to be there in spite of the challenges in doing so.. The day will be a whirlwind, I’m sure. We will need to get up in the middle of the night to make it to her early morning ceremony. We won’t return home until later that day. But, we must make this a “day trip” because there is no practical way to spend the night away from home. And, there is just so much to worry about.
…I worry that spending seven hours on the road will be too much for him.
…I worry that the audience’s clapping and celebrating of each graduate will startle him.
…I worry that he’ll miss he regular therapies.
…I worry that he’ll move his bowels.
…What if he will need deep suctioned?
…Have I accounted for every situation that might happen?
How will I possibly hold it together, even when I know I must? To even just imagine when we drive past his old freshmen dorm, or college house, or football stadium? How about the hospital where he clung to life for so long? It will be damned hard.
What about the parking lot where he took his last thought before Vantrease and May senselessly beat him?