Ann had been home for two days and Tom had been off the drugs that had kept him in his induced coma and everyone was on edge, like sitting on pins and needles waiting for the first sign that he was going to wake up. Ann had spent every day going back to the hospital in spite of her need of rest to be with Tom. Sarah was generally with Ann and Tom’s mom and dad, Jill and Randy, were always close by. Joe would come and go throughout the day and into the evening. June would stop in a couple times a day to check up on Sarah and to see how Tom was doing and to support Ann as she was still struggling to sleep and was having nightmares about the accident.
Everyone including the doctors was beginning to worry about Tom. At one point about 24 hours after they removed the drugs that induced the coma from Tom, he opened his eyes and stared at the ceiling. He held them open for several minutes but then he just slipped back into his comatose state. He had been restless and the doctors could tell he was in a lot of pain so they administered some pain medication to help Tom relax which appeared to work. However, this also slowed the waking up process that was so important. Joe was talking to the doctor and the nurses down at the nurse’s station as he was searching for anything that could help bring Tom around. If you know anything that Tom likes or something that could possibly stimulate his mind might work, replied the doctor. I have seen times when just having a pastor praying next to someone will snap someone back, or talking to him about things that he really enjoyed to do. But I don’t know what is really important to Tom so maybe you could think of something. After a little thought Joe told the doctor that one of Tom’s favorite things to do was to build a bonfire out in the woods. He always likes when I play my guitar and sing while we all sit next to the fire. He always told me how much he enjoyed it and how it relaxed him. Yes, something like that just might help replied the nurse behind the desk but I don’t think we can take him to the woods. But some good music around here would be nice.
Joe walked away and headed back to the waiting room and found Ann drinking a cup of coffee. After explaining what the doctor and nurse told him he stood up and told her he was going to get his guitar and try it. Before long he was sitting in Tom’s room playing softly and quietly singing a couple songs that Tom always liked to hear. Everyone left them alone in hopes that this just might do the trick and Tom might wake up. After about an hour had passed and several songs had been sung, Joe leaned back in his chair and quietly said a prayer. Dear God, I am not sure why this had to happen, I am really new at this but I know you can hear me. Please help me help Tom. I can’t do this by myself. I need your help. Show me what to do next. Please help me. Please wake Tom up and heal his body and be with Ann in this time as she waits for Tom and the issue of her pregnancy. She loves Tom and Tom loves her and they need to be together. Thanks in advance for all your help and for having such patience with me.
Joe sit up in his chair and was about to walk out of Tom’s room when he had an idea. He hurried down to the waiting room but it was empty so he headed outside and found Sarah and Ann sitting on a bench just staring at the tree and the baby birds in the nest above them as the mother bird would fly out and find food and then bring it back and feed them. He could hear them talking as he was approaching from the back. Joe stopped giving them privacy he sensed they needed. Ann this is why I believe you need to be happy about the pregnancy and just wrap your arms around being a mom. When two people fall in love and share together what you and Tom shared, this can be the result which is beautiful. You maybe didn’t plan it to happen, or even want it to happen right now, but it is still real, this baby is real, it is alive, its little heart is beating, it is in your body soaking up your love and it is part of you and Tom now. This baby needs to have your love, the same love you have for Tom. This baby became a living part of both of you the moment it was conceived. I know you didn’t plan it to happened, but it did. I know Sarah, but it is such a big step and I don’t even know if Tom will be happy about it and we are not married and I am still very young and… Yes Ann you are but you have to wait until Tom is out of the woods and recovering. He needs you and you need to wait until you both have a chance to talk about it. I will Sarah.
Joe walked up to them once he knew that had stopped their conversation and told them his idea. They both thought that if anything would work that just might be it. Joe headed back to his car and fired out a text message to every one of their friends and set a time of 7:00pm so everyone would be able to make it. He walked back in to the hospital and told the nurse what he had planned and she told him to have everyone as quiet as possible but she was sure it would be alright. The rest of the morning and the afternoon seemed to drag with no response from Tom. He was just lying still in his bed and only on occasion would he move his eyes just a little. No one knew what he was going though, what his mind was thinking if anything. All they knew was they wanted him to wake up.
Around 7:00pm Joe made his way from the waiting room with Ann and Sarah back down to Tom’s room. After a few minutes had passed Randy and Mary walked in together and before long Pet and Nancy, Cal and Connie and Carol and Paul were all standing around Tom’s bed. Paul had brought his laptop with him and he set it on the rolling bed table, fired it up and pushed it around so Tom would be looking at it. He turned up the volume and the soft sound of a crackling fire filled the room. Carol reached over and took Paul’s hand and leaned her head on his shoulder thinking where did this man come from? After a few minute of small talk, Joe picked up his guitar and Sarah and Ann walked up next to him and he started to play one of Tom’s favorite songs. Ann and Sarah started out singing and harmonized with a sound that quietly echoed down the hall putting smiles on everyone that could hear them. Before long everyone joined in and the whole group was singing just like they did at the campfire. The nurses and doctors stopped what they were doing long enough to listen, hearing the sound of love pouring out of the room. Other patients were listening and some who knew the songs joined in as the gang continued to sing. Randy and Jill had arrived and could hear them as they approached Tom’s room and were joined by Greg and Sandy. Before long even Sarah’s mom and dad, June and Carl, were standing outside the door of Tom’s room. Pastor Dan was in the hospital visiting one of the other people from the church that had surgery a couple days earlier when he heard the sound and made his way towards Tom’s room. As they all sang and Pastor Dan stood praying outside the door Tom unexpectedly opened his eyes. He turned his head toward the voice of Ann and Sarah and squeezed out the best smile he could. Then Ann who had been holding Tom’s hand bent over giving him a kiss and said; welcome back my love. As soon as Jill and Randy realized what had just happened they made their way to Tom’s bedside with tears rolling down their cheeks. Joe keep playing softly as the gang continued to sing and hum along. Pastor Dan quickly headed to the nurses station and told them that Tom was awake. Jumping to their feet they quickly went to check Tom’s vitals. One of the nurses paged the doctor on duty to inform him to come to Tom room.
After a few minutes had passed, the doctor arrive and the nurses requested everyone to leave for a few minutes except for Tom’s parents so they could give Tom a through checkup. They all made their way to the waiting room. It wasn’t long and Pastor Dan asked Sarah and Joe if he could lead them all in a prayer of thanks. Everyone stopped in their tracks as Pastor Dan prayed a prayer of thanks that would stick in their minds for a long time. As soon as Pastor Dan said amen, Ann headed towards the door. She couldn’t stand being away from Tom, so she told Sarah she was going back down to be with Tom and his parents. As soon as she arrived at the door Jill grabbed her by the hand, pulled her close and through her arms around her and hugged her as the tears flowed down the cheeks of both of them. The emotions were flowing so strong in Tom’s room that even the nurses had tears in their eyes.
The nurses and doctor had finished checking Tom over and told Jill, Randy and Ann that they could stay for a little while but they needed to let Tom rest as much as possible. Tom looked over at Ann and with a slight movement of his fingers they could tell he wanted to have her close. Ann walked over and taking hold of his hand she kissed him again. Tom tried to speak but it was hard. They had just removed the tube they had placed in his throat and things weren’t working very well but he managed to say; are you alright? Yes you craze guy, replied Ann. You are the one we are all worried about. With that Tom smiled, closed his eyes and appeared to slip back into a sleep. Everyone stood still as concern welled up inside each of them waiting for Tom to open his eyes again. Ann looked at the nurse and she tried to reassure them this is expected. A few minutes later he opened his eyes again and Ann was still standing holding his hand and as he looked to the other side he could see his mom holding the other with his dad standing alongside with his hand resting on his leg. Just than Joe and Sarah walked back in. Tom tilted his head and looking straight at them and smiled his special grin that let them know everything was going to be alright. Joe walked over to the bed saying; you had us all pretty worried. Sarah put her arm around Ann and then Tom closed his eyes and slipped back into a much needed sleep. The nurse that was staying in the room told them that it would be better if they could let him sleep for a while and that she would be staying with him and would let them know if there was any change.
The five of them made their way out the door and down the hall towards the waiting room. They could hear all the voices of cheer and laughter coming from inside as they opened the door to join them. Several of Tom’s friends still had pretty red eyes as they updated them on Tom’s condition. Jill spoke up telling everyone that the doctor said that because when he woke-up and appeared to recognized everyone, that it was a great sign and over the next 24 hours they would have a much better idea if there are any issues with this memory. The songs you sang were what he needed to hear. You guys are the greatest. Tom is blessed to have such wonderful friends that care so much for him.
Over the next fifteen minutes most of Tom’s friends made their way towards the parking lot and headed out. Joe and Sarah and all the parents lingered behind along with Pastor Dan. After a few minutes had passed Jill spoke up telling Pastor Dan how much she appreciated his prayers. I’m not even sure how you know Tom. I haven’t had a chance to even ask. But I am really happy you have been here for him. Ann smiled at Jill and told her that was a total other story and she would tell her all about it when they had some time. Pastor Dan just smiled his peaceful smile. That would be great Ann, replied Jill. Ann smiled saying I think we will need Sarah and Joe along so they can fill in between the lines. Let’s just say the last few weeks have been interesting to say the least.
Joe picked up his guitar and Sarah took hold of his hand and told Randy and Jill they would be back in the morning but to call if there was any new news. June and Carl and Greg and Sandy were making their way towards the door of the waiting room when Greg stopped long enough to pitch his keys to Randy and said I am riding home with Sandy. The front door will be unlocked. Come back anytime you want. Pastor Dan looked at Randy and Jill and told them he would check in on them tomorrow and he would keep all of them in his prayers. He handed them a card with his number on it and said call me anytime if I can help. Outside Joe and Sarah were standing close, embraced in a kiss when Sarah’s mom and dad walked out. Joe looked at Greg and Sandy and could only smile. That’s alright Joe we love her too, offered up Greg. They all laughed a little as Sarah looked up at Joe and smiled saying; I think I will ride home with mom and dad so you can get home and get some sleep. Joe really wanted to take Sarah home but his mind was also on Tom so he quickly agreed. Sarah gave Joe one last goodnight kiss as her parents were making their way to their car and turned and ran to catch up with them. You really like this guy don’t you Sarah? Oh mom replied Sarah as the smile gave it all away.
Randy walked over to Jill and put his arms arm her pulling her close. It was only a few moments when they both just slid down in a chair. They looked at each other and smiled. Randy we are so lucky our son is going to be alright. Look at all the great friends he has that care so very much for him. I can see just how much Ann is in love with him and I could see it in his eyes as he looked at her when he first woke up. Both Randy and Jill leaned their head on the back of their chairs, closed their eyes and enjoyed the moment, thankful for the peace they finally found after such a stress filled week.
“To be continued”