Sunday, October 21, 2012

Pictures of the Week 10/20/12

You work so hard Forrest. We are right beside you every step but still, we can't really fathom how deep you must reach for each inch of ground you regain. This week we marveled as you threw a ball for the first time in over a year, walked 28 feet supported in your new walker, and did your best to write all the letters in your name on the white board. It makes your day when your friends can Skype or come visit to see your amazing accomplishments and progress. When Tori, with her family, and then Liza, both home from college, came to visit with you this week, all your burdens slipped away, your face lit up, you listened, soaking up their stories, your memories, your life being rebuilt, moment by moment... It's pure magic, that connection, that bond with true friends that makes anything possible. I can hardly wait to see what tomorrow will bring. With love & gratitude, especially for the kindness and generosity of your friends, Mum


  1. What wonderful pictures. I see a lot of the gleam of the old Forrest in these two pictures. Way to go Forrest. Love you and that Team 44. Grandmom

  2. Forrest

    The combination of Mum's previous post recounting the precarious nature of your battle this time last year, together with our visit with you last week, prompted this post.

    While I continue to be amazed by the strength, perseverance, and faithfulness of you mom, dad and brother, I am even more amazed by YOUR strength of spirit and minute by minute determination to progress.

    Day by day, Team 44 and you work tirelessly and doggedly to return your body, mind and spirit to its status/condition pre-accident. You have endured moments of unbelievable progress evaporating into moments of despair. At times, we have been fearful that you would survive, much less recover. You have gone from exceeding every therapeutic goal in your early days at Sheppard Center, to fighting for your life in hospital rooms from Atlanta to Baltimore. Each day, each hour and each minute you were surrounded, nurtured and protected by your family. Your Mom, Dad and brother have fought side by side with you day by day.

    We have seen you in some of the best of these days(when you were progressing so rapidly at Sheppard Center early last year) and in some of the darkest of these days as you lay in your bed drenched in sweat and clenched in a battle with your own muscular and nervous systems, unable to stop the almost full body charlie horses. We have seen the improvement when your family brought you home to Brightwood last December to nourish you before another attempt to attach your Lid. We have seen how your body responded to Mum's homemade "smoothies" that brought your body weight back to where it should be. We have been able to see the improvement in your ability to communicate non-verbally. We saw the amazing physical feat of you standing (albeit with help), and walking (again with help). However, Forrest, none of that compares to the smile we saw on your face that shone through to your soul.

    While we are confident that you will continue to make progress with all of you physical therapy and with all of your physical abilities, it is your smile, your smirk, your being that is most exciting to see. We have done plenty of physical things together -- riding horses, scuba diving, walking the streets of New York -- yet, that which we long for the most is to experience your spirit, your wit, your charm and your humor. When we were together last week, we were blessed by all of those things. Moments after you climbed the physical mountaintop, standing and walking, you sat with us, laughed with us, and smiled with us. As only a Stone-Allen might behave, you showed us your inner spark even though you still are fighting your own battles minute by minute, hour by hour and day by day.

    Forrest,I know the road is hard and the journey is long. I also know that cliche's are less meaningful when the battle goes on for what seems to be an eternity, so I will try to avoid them. Keep up the fight -- you are WINNING. I can't begin to tell you what the ending looks like. I can tell you that in those moments that you feel tired, nay, weary, remember that you are alive and surrounded with people who care so much for you. Usually we express this sentiment with hollow words such as "I love you". Few get to see those words expressed in deeds as you see every minute of every day performed by your mom, your dad and your brother.

    Looking forward to laughing with you again soon.

    Our Best

    The Selfes

  3. You looks so great Forrest!!! Keep smiling! You are a gift!

  4. What a wonderful post of your smiling face, Forrest! Like your mom, I am so grateful to your AWESOME friends for cheering you on in person. May God bless each one of them in a very special way.

    Forrest...your face reveals your great joy, but also your great progress. What a joy to see YOU in your smile! Your fun loving personality and your gratitude. I almost hear your laugh as I smile at your image on my computer screen.

    Your courage, your patience, your relentless spirit and that of your family continues to inspire us all, dear boy.

    I agree with Kelly: you are a GIFT.

    I pray that your strength is renewed daily and that the incredible construction project undertaken by Team Forrest gains ground each day.

    All our love to you and your super star family,
    Shannon et al. XOXO

    “But, they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31.

  5. Team 44
    Thinking of you during Hurricane Sandy. I hope everything continued smoothly for Forrest during the storm!
    The Selfes