Daily Archives: April 1, 2010

Thomas Update–He’s On the Mend and He Got a Helmet!

Alternative Bike Helmets

As many of you know, my son, Thomas was injured in a bicycle vs. SUV accident on March 5th.  At that time he sustained a TBI (a traumatic brain injury) and was kept in the ICU at Denver Health for five days.

By the grace of God, (Thank you Lord!)  Thomas is doing much better today and I believe that is due in large part to the generous out pouring of prayer he received.  Christians from Crossroads Church of Denver and various other churches throughout the world interceded on our son’s behalf and for that we will always be grateful.

Today, however, nearly a month later, many of you (and we are extremely grateful for the concern) have e-mailed, commented and called asking for an update and so I decided to write a detailed post with the specifics and publish it here.

Thomas has a skull fracture in the basal area of his brain that extends upward through his middle ear on the right side.  At the time of the accident he had a brain bleed; (a subdural hematoma) and his brain was bruised, the frontal and temporal lobes of his brain were all affected.  He also had a chip from his mastoid bone which penetrated his middle ear and caused bleeding from his right ear and initially he demonstrated hearing loss.

The good news is we are told by the doctors that his skull fracture will eventually mend and that the bruising on his brain will gradually dissipate. The bad news on the other hand is that all this healing will take months.  Brain injuries heal very slowly!

In the interim he is suffering from what is called post-concussive syndrome and his main symptoms are headaches, occasional dizziness and fatigue. He is also still experiencing hearing loss in his right ear and a laceration over his left eye is healing. He had stitches to close the laceration above his eye and he lost part of his very bushy black eye brow somewhere in the process. We are not sure whether the eye brow will grow back or not but as his mom this concerns me.  I am personally praying that the eye brow will come back because my very handsome son will look a bit unusual with half a bushy eye brow on one side.  We are told however, that if it does not grow back plastic surgery to fix the problem is fairly simple.

The bottom line is, I –We (his father and I)–would love and appreciate it if you would continue to keep Thomas on your prayer lists.

He is attempting to return to school (Metro State University) after spring break and is already back to work at the Van Shoe store at Cherry Creek Mall.  Most of all we would ask you to pray for him for wisdom to know what activities to resume and what to hold off on.  He needs to be careful because if he re-injures his head it could be life threatening.

I have been told that he has purchased a BIKE HELMET (a very good idea considering) and I am hoping to see it ASAP to confirm the report.  When I do I will take a picture of it to pass it on to all of you (so you too will have the evidence)!  The above picture is an example of one of the alternative style bike helmets that I found on line, proving all helmets don’t have to look dorky!

Thomas in general is an extremely healthy individual so experiencing pain and physical problems is totally new to him and could be challenging.  He is also a total optimist so none of this seems to be bothering him at all.  He minimizes his injuries and is chomping at the bit to get back to his life as if nothing ever happened to him.

Thomas spent the first day or so after being discharged from the hospital with his father and I but he is currently recovering at the home he shares with his three male room mates in downtown Denver.  His house is near the Metro campus and satiates the need for city life and urban love that his generation is so obsessed with.

So then, what specifically, do we ask that you pray for:


Healing of his skull fracture.

Healing of the brain bruising

Healing of the middle ear trauma and restoration of any hearing loss

No seizures as his brain heals

No attention or concentration difficulties

Good recall and no memory loss

WISDOM, WISDOM, and more WISDOM to know when and how to resume activities.

Healing of the laceration above his eye and return of the bushy black eye brow (a mom’s request)

Thanks again to so many of you for loving Thomas, we appreciate your concern.

Maryellen Stipe

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