I boarded a plane on Wednesday morning for Nashville. Bag was packed full with the cutest clothes I could scrounge from my closet, I was anxious to get there, to be with my friends and enjoy five days of conferencing & talking about being an advocate for social good through blogging. I had dinner in downtown Nashville with some lovely friends when I arrived. I got a good night's sleep and enjoyed the first full day of events. A handmade market, a meeting or two, drinks with a handful of the Deeper Story writers. The party that night was fun, but my roommates and I called it a night around 10:30 and went to bed.
I was woken up by a phone call from my dad at 1:30am on Friday morning. It was one of those phone calls that everyone hates getting in the middle of the night.
My youngest brother, Ryan, was in the hospital. He was found unconscious and not breathing in his Denver apartment & was rushed to the emergency room, where they revived him, put him on a ventilator and tried to keep his heart beating after going into cardiac arrest on arrival.
When my dad called, Ryan wasn't expected to make it through the next hour. His lungs were failing, and oxygen wasn't getting to his vital organs. The human body can only sustain that for a very short time. My other brother, Nick was here with him, along with my aunts and one of my uncles. They were told to say their goodbyes. I was told I wouldn't make it in time.
When Nick sat down by his bedside at that moment, he told Ryan to fight. To not give up. To breathe. To work. Immediately, Ryan started responding. His oxygen levels started to climb and the doctors just stood there watching. Nick saved his life and pushed him to survive.
In the meantime, my incredible and gracious roommates, Emily and Abby, helped me find a morning flight to Denver. They took care of loose ends and my responsibilities at the conference. They updated people that needed to know. They stayed up with me all night and didn't get any sleep. I still tear up when I think of what they did for me that night... they kept me afloat, along with so many of you and your texts, emails, tweets and Facebook posts. I'll always be grateful.
I boarded a plane to Denver at 9am yesterday morning and I've been here ever since. Since I've arrived, Ryan has made small, but miraculous improvements, considering that all the doctors and specialists expected he wouldn't last through the first night. My brother is on life support for his heart and lungs, and is in a medically-induced paralytic state so that his organs can get the healing they need without a fight. His heart and lungs are getting stronger by the hour. But now, we wait. After seeing his improvement, my faith in my Heavenly Father as the ultimate Healer has deepened. Sometimes the only thing I can do is sit with my eyes closed and breathe "Thank you. Thank you. Thank you."
I've made a CarePage for Ryan and his recovery. You can CLICK HERE to visit. I've taken over communication for my family, so that we can focus on Ryan and getting him better. I'll be posting all of the updates there.
Hubster is at home in Salt Lake City with Rowan, having some much-needed Dad and Son time while I stay here in Denver caring for my family and being by my brother's side.
I can't thank you all enough for the outpouring of love and support that has been given to my family and me. The encouragement and prayers have sustained us, and all the words in the world wouldn't suffice in explaining my gratitude.