This website is about positive news, and now that Taylor has reached this level of recovery, I can now talk about some of the negative news we initially got.
In the beginning, the senior neurologist gave us the news. It was blunt and simple: ‘Persistent vegetative state for the rest of her life.’ This news really stunk, so we earnestly enrolled Taylor in a research study, really just to get access to another professional to get a second opinion. The neurologist heading up the study talked candidly with us but in the end, said the same thing.
The research neurologist did give us a glimmer of hope by noting that before the cooling protocol, this prognosis was very accurate, but after this protocol, which Taylor received, the prognosis was only 95% accurate. As I said…a tiny glimmer. Exploring and coming up with ways to explain this 5% was the focus of the study.
Then I managed to get a young night shift resident to give it a go. At 3 am he looked at the MRI with me and very carefully took the time to explain exactly why anyone looking at that MRI would say the same thing. Basically, because the brain needs a feedback loop to process time-based information, and the feedback mechanism is heavily damaged, she will never be able to process a sentence or a succession of eye movements or anything at all. He then proceeded to talk about the other damage.
Then a friend of a friend (thanks JB) took a look at it and said it looks “not very optimistic.”
Then I cornered another night shift resident who also gave the same assessment under no uncertain terms. You see, night shift residents are young and haven’t learned the fine art of sugar coating. They tell you the text book case of things and don’t hold back. I explained this idea to a senior neurologist, and he said they do this only because they are so green that they haven’t been totally wrong yet.
The clincher was when Taylor’s eventual lead neurologist first looked at the MRI. At that time, he and I hadn’t met. I was walking in and out of Taylor’s room and when I did, this doctor was glancing over at me from behind a computer screen. It wasn’t a good glance. It was a face of incredible emotion. It creeped me out and after two or three of these looks, I shot him a WTF face. When I did, he realized what he must’ve looked like and immediately changed to a pleasant smile. When he finished with the computer, he asked to speak with me and said he had just reviewed Taylor’s records and wanted to talk about how to proceed. He was a seasoned pro and as such, carefully told me to not expect much and discussed what kind of care we could give her short and long term. He has kids about Taylor’s age and the sorrow in his raw, unfiltered expression still haunts. That look!
The greatest news of all is that we don’t care about any these predictions because Taylor didn’t just beat the original prognosis, she kicked its butt! Apparently, she is in the 5% that defy the pre-cooling methods of prediction. Of course, to anyone who knows Taylor, that’s not a big surprise.
I meant to say Taylor, you are amazing! You are already on your way to a compete recovery. What a great pic of you with the Brass Rat! ha ha ha XOXOXO
In Quantum physics a “miracle” is just a natural law. She will have a complete recovery.
Wow!!! That’s an absolutely amazing news! Keep it up, Taylor!
Taylor is Perfect!!!
Thank you for being honest with us who are following Taylor. It’s wonderful that she is doing better than the doctors predicted. You and Kit have a tough road ahead with Taylor so take care of yourselves as you continue on this road.
John and Kit you both are so strong and persistent and those qualities are double doses in Perfect Taylor ( I’m sure Nathan inherited that too).
I don’t personally know Taylor (since I only met her Aunt Ying in LA) , and to me as an outsider, it is only obvious that Taylor is Perfect ! Definitely not that average 95% girl. For a girl to be admitted at MIT proves that Taylor has a lot of brains. Put the odds aside ! Forget those grey cells that are not working. Focus on the many more cells you have in your Beautiful Brain Taylor. Get them to work ! You have proven so many times that you CAN do it. Don’t be sad, since you have not lost yet ! You will win Taylor ! You CAN DO it ! Taylor IS Perfect
You WILL DO it ! Perfect Taylor.
We love you very much !
What a heart-warming report and so well written, John. I wish I had gotten to know this girl! I’m with Mimi singing “Praise God from whom all blessings flow….” It takes me back to the uncertainties we felt when daughter Susan had a bike accident when away at college.
Wow, this was amazing. I am so proud of her and all her support team. I think we can all agree that Taylor isn’t just in the top 5%. She is in the top 0.1%! Thank you so much for sharing; she is still constantly in our positive thoughts and we hope she continues to achieve big things in Colorado!!
This is such amazing news. John and Kit: in all the ups and downs of Taylor’s recovery, you must know that because of the strength and courage you instilled in your daughter she refuses to be in the 95%. She will beat the odds and grow stronger. My father took me the race track quite a bit, and he taught me not to overlook the long shot, the underdog, the odds against horse cause they will and do surprise. Also, never leave the track until the winners are posted on the board. Taylor, I’m not leaving the track cause I know your name is going to be up on that board in bright lights!
Stay strong. You are perfect and you are loved.
This is a great post and fills me with joy. As you said, no one who knows her is surprised. Since when has Taylor been in the 95th percentile of anything? Like ever?
Please tell her we’re incredibly proud of her back here in lab. We love her and are so impressed with her, per usual.
Praise God from all blessings flow/Praise Him al creatures here below/Praise Him above ye heavenly host/Praise Father Son and Holy Ghost…Amen!
Beautifully written, John. And what a great story! Thanks so much with sharing the backstory with all of us.