An update from Scott, Autumn’s dad, to fill us in on what progress and difficulties the past months have held for their family. Thank you in advance for continuing to pray with us, and watch the faithfulness of God unfold:
“I know we have been long overdue for an update on Autumn so I finally got a chance to sit down to describe the latest in her recovery. We have gone through the shock and intensive care stage. We also moved through the long inpatient and outpatient phase of recovery and now we are entering what I call the slow and steady stage of recovery. Its harder to see improvement because it has now slowed down considerably. With that being said, she has been doing well at home in this new stage. I would say that she functions quite well but there are “silent” hurdles that you can’t really see because they are all brain response functions and the deficiencies don’t show themselves until they come up in everyday life. There are still moments of surprise when her quick wit comes out but there are also quiet times of heartache for the problems that arise. Things you know she should be able to recall or handle from a logical standpoint just are not always there yet. In some respects she is the Autumn we always knew but there are many times we are still adjusting to the new normal.
I remember way back at week two or three we said that Autumn and Elijah were completely in God’s hands and He was going to recover them at his pace and to His completion. Its a scary thought to give away some pieces of your child that may never come back. When you open yourself to truly accepting God’s plan there are many normal desires that get stripped away. You lay open and empty before Him. Its a very vulnerable position but the most powerful place a person can be before God! If there is one prominent issue that clouds our view of God and His work – it’s our agenda. When he brings you to a point of brokenness thats where He does His best work.
We have seen God take our precious girl on a journey no one wants to be a part of. As we continue to learn and heal its so very good to declare His goodness and healing in our lives. I still kiss her every night and I can’t help but think that she really shouldn’t be here… but praise God he has rescued her and Elijah from the pit of despair!
Autumn also still struggles with her eyesight. The doctors said if her optic nerve was going to heal it would have shown improvement already. We are doing some therapy which seems to be opening her field of vision some. She has major double vision issues and if we can get her bad eye to track better she can improve her vision some. We are considering surgery which would allow that frozen eye to move more and minimize her double vision issues. She has a great attitude for all of her therapies but this eye issue has worn on her quite a bit. Would you please continue to pray with us that there would be a positive resolution to this ongoing issue?
Autumn has been involved in other activities that have helped her grow. She was responsible for team policy judge orientation at the recent Rocky Mountain Classic speech and debate tourney in Denver. As many of you know she was quite involved as a student and now she is taking on some teaching roles which she has thoroughly enjoyed. She enjoyed seeing Elijah that day and it was great to stimulate her mind with such good memories. It was also special that at the awards ceremony to conclude the event, she was brought up on the stage to a roaring standing ovation from her peers.
Autumn is also pushing herself by taking one online college level class this spring. The class is journalism which she loves and she is doing quite well. It takes a long time to study and take notes, but she reviews her material just about every day and she is currently holding a “A” in the class. Its pretty cool to see her succeed at schoolwork after all that she has been through.
I also want to thank all of you for praying and supporting us through this tough journey. I remember that there were people praying for the parents that they would stay united and close throughout the tough recovery process. I want to thank you for this as well. The amount of stress and emotional turmoil has been quite hard on me and Cinnamon. We have faced an unbelievable amount of attacks from the enemy but I am pleased to say that God is working to keep drawing us together. This is real life and God is the author of our faith. He is enough to carry us through any trial.
I need to say that Cinnamon is the toughest person I have ever met! The way she stepped up and cared for her girl as I struggled to keep up with work and deal with other health issues… she has been a gift from God. The outpouring of love and caregiving support she gave to Autumn would be natural for any mother… but let me tell you this is no ordinary mother! The main caregiving role in a situation as intense as this would tear apart the average person. But she has been so strong and I have been truly amazed to see her sacrifice in so many ways and I am so proud of her.
As we come up on the year anniversary of the accident (May 8), we are so very thankful for God’s goodness to Autumn and our whole family. We are eternally grateful for the support and prayers we received from people all over the world. In a way you have shared this journey with us and it is our hope that God has been honored and lives have been changed because of what God has done. I’m still not sure why he chose us, but clearly His plan has pushed us to where we would never go ourselves! And in our pretty comfortable, first world amenities sometimes you need perspective!
I wanted to make you aware of another journey our family has been on so you can continue to pray. My health has been declining and I am facing a liver transplant on May 17 if not earlier. I have a bile duct disease that shuts down my ducts and over the years has caused a lot of pain and strain on my liver. I’ve had numerous septic infections and have been struggling with this for many years. I have a live donor approved to give me part of his liver and then both halves will regrow in roughly two months. It’s pretty incredible how God created the liver to regenerate and through this process I can get healthy again. Would you please pray for me and my family as we face this new challenge?
Autumn also created a powerful video which interviews my children and their reaction to my health situation. Its not quite done but stay tuned and we will post it next weekend.
Summary by Autumn…
“This may be a long update, but truly we are at a loss for words on how to fully declare what the Lord has done in our lives. He deserves every amount of praise we can give and He makes us excited and hopeful for what He holds next in our future.”
— Scott & Autumn