Thursday, December 18, 2014

December 18th, 2014

It's been a great December. It's amazing to see how well Forrest is coming along, getting stronger and working hard, with his amazing community of friends and support team beside him. Forrest passed his midterm for his first college course, American History, as a result of lots of studying with Tami. He's been busy with a plethora of activities, as seen below.

This time last year Forrest was in the hospital getting ready for emergency surgery on Christmas day, so we are definitely cherishing every moment of this holiday season. Forrest is getting stronger, and as he gets ready for early January, which will bring the first of two complicated cranioplasty surgeries, we are thankful for this wonderful community, along with Forrest's strength, love, and indomitable sense of humor. We hope everyone has a terrific holiday season with friends and family.

Austin, Forrest, Mom and Dad

Forrest sang his heart out at A Place To Be Christmas recital, along with other amazing APTB kids, in front of a crowd of more than 300

Many friends surprised Forrest for his 22nd Birthday on Monday!

Forrest on an exciting Walmart trip picking out a bow-and-arrow for a gift exchange. Forrest, how did we ever get Mom to approve that?

Getting ready for the Middleburg Christmas Ball

Forrest and Tori showing off dance moves at the Ball

Forrest and many others braved the pouring rain to march with Canine Companions for Independence in the Middleburg Christmas Parade
*Rocky theme music* PT with Del

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving greetings from snowy BrightWood!
Hello friends and Happy Thanksgiving from Team 44!  We have so many things to be thankful for this are just a few! Our amazing family and friends that bless us with unending love and encouragement; the many doctors, nurses, teachers and therapists that have spent countless hours helping Forrest on his journey;  A Place to Be and the Same Sky Project for giving Forrest a chance to share his story; the opportunity to travel to Bermuda as a family; Forrest graduating from high school and starting college (and Austin starting Grad school!); and of course, the light of hope and belief in Forrest from each of you, his steadfast supporters.

As we celebrate Thanksgiving and move into the ever-busy Christmas season, we would like to invite you to a very special event.  Next Friday evening, December 5th, individuals from A Place to Be (including Forrest) will be performing in a Holiday Recital.  It begins at 6:30pm at the Salamander Resort and Spa in Middleburg.  Please come for a night of inspiration and holiday joy!

Wishing all of you a safe and blessed Thanksgiving,
Team 44
Austin is home!  These 3 furry faces showed their support for cancer awareness by participating in
"No-Shave November".
Learn more here:

We would love to hear what you are thankful for this year!  :-) 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Back to Work

Someone told us early on that "recovery is not for the faint of heart". 

It's clear Forrest that, as one of your followers recently wrote to you, "You have the heart of a warrior!"

Two weeks out from your last surgery and we are already on countdown to your next .... eight weeks and four days from today.  And you are hard at work to sharpen your mind, strengthen your body, improve your voice and regain your balance.  

Pilates is both fun and challenging with Kay and Toliver on guard.

NOVA offered you a medical exemption to withdraw from your online history course, but you refuse to quit. So you and Tami double your efforts to catch up and prepare for your mid term exam.  

At PT, your pal Del has to tell you enough after you complete three more reps than he asks for!

Your friend Derek stays close to catch you if you loose your balance playing pool, but that doesn't stop you both from enjoying a seriously close match! 

Onward and upward, Champ.  Your courage, sense of humor, and your unwavering friends will carry you on wherever the road leads! 

Blessed to be on Team Forrest,

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Home At Last !


Thank you All for the prayers, warm wishes, encouragement, Skypes, visits, TLC and faith in Forrest. 

There really is no place like home! 

And Austin's homecoming for Thanksgiving, is just around the bend!
 We have much to be a Thankful for. 

God Bless,



We are forever grateful for the incredible care Forrest has received this week at Johns Hopkins and for Tami and Nurse Dawn's round the clock vigilance!  

This morning Dr Kumar enthusiastically described Forrest's trajectory as "definitively upward"!  Right now our trajectory is BrightWood bound and we couldn't be happier.  

Toliver was especially thrilled when FINALLY  Forrest joined him on his ride down the elevator and out the front door.  The whole outside world is indeed brighter! 

Saturday, November 8, 2014

A Happy Saturday

Forrest had a good day today.  He woke up with a smile on his face and his voice was much louder and clearer than the previous few days.  He walked down the hall with help from the hospital Physical Therapist, played catch with Toliver and Skyped with awesome friends Nick and Tori.  We are still on track to break out of Hopkins midday tomorrow and will do our best to keep you all updated. 
-Team 44
Thumbs up with Nick
44 trying not to smile for a pic with Tami.  He said we could only post this pic if it was small.  :)
A day late, but this is playing basketball with friend Ben on Friday.  44 is being supported by a physical therapist behind him in this pic...he's not quite steady on his own yet.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Grateful for Special "Noggins "

Among the many blessings bestowed upon our family during this journey of Forrest's recovery are the amazing doctors nurses therapists teachers aides caregivers extended family members and friends who have so generously given their time energy talent and devotion to help Forrest find his path.  

Today Dr. Kumar and Forrest delighted in putting their "Noggins" together outside of the operating room!  

The current plan is to give Forrest another day at Johns Hopkins to make certain he is stable on the new medications and that the new stomach access is healed well enough to be fully functional. If all goes well tomorrow, we hope to be BrightWood bound on Sunday!!!

Many thanks for all your blog comments, Facebook posts, video messages, texts, prayers and positive energy. We couldn't do this without you. 

With Love & Gratitude,
Team Forrest