Reading over MM's quick takes below, I noticed that she mentioned our visit to Brittney. We're asked so often how she is doing that I thought I'd update her status a little bit here, and relate a really neat story that her dad shared with us while we were visiting.
Britt is doing well enough to be home, but she still has a long way to go before she could live without 24-hour care. She has some use of her arms and legs, but still can't stand unassisted (and even with assistance, not for very long). She can move herself around to some degree with her wheelchair, but still needs help getting to a particular location. She still hasn't worked out a system, whether verbally or with some kind of signal, to indicate "yes" or "no," and the speech therapists at the hospital she was in until last week weren't very positive about whether or not she could understand what others are saying to her...but, since she's been home, she showed them!
Sometime last week, Brittney's dad went to the refrigerator in their house to put away some dip he had been eating. But when he got there, Brittney was parked in her wheelchair in the way of the door. Since he had something else to do, he had Britt hold onto the dip container temporarily and said, jokingly, "Put that in the fridge for me, will ya" (or something about like that). Well, Brittney proceeded to use her right arm (which has less coordination than her left, right now) to pull the refrigerator door open. When it was blocked by her wheelchair, she moved just a little bit and tried again. When she still couldn't get it open enough, she moved a little more and finally got the door to open all the way. She then used her left hand and chucked the dip into the fridge from across her body!
So, this was pretty encouraging for us to find out that she definitely understands at least some of what we're saying to her, and I think it gave her folks evidence that she is still making progress. So we have a little more hope that we'll have her back someday more like what she was before the accident...and a little satisfaction that "the experts" underestimated her!