Thursday, November 30, 2006

Going with the flow...

The house – Neil has been spending every spare moment at the house trying to get things ready for the elevator installation.  Framing the shaft is complicated by the fact that vacuum pipes, water lines and electrical wires need to be moved.  Though it seems like a long, arduous process, we heard the other day of a man who has been waiting a year to modify his house for his elevator installation!  A few months seems high-speed in comparison!  Ideally we would be able to work on the renovations full time but somehow Neil’s full time job keeps getting in the way!  These are good days to “go with the flow”…

The rowing machine – Mike’s assessment went well.  We assumed that he would be doing the actual assessment on the rowing machine but all they did was attach the electrodes to his legs to see how much movement they could get.  Apparently you work your way slowly up to the using the machine.  They seemed positive about getting Mike into the program but we haven’t heard any more details since then.

The power chair – right now Mike is trialing a power chair here at the apartment.  A couple of chairs were brought to our house and Mike narrowed the search to one which was brought here to try downtown and at the university.  Once the chair is ordered, we will sit down to talk about vehicles. Though Mike’s primary chair will be his manual chair, having a power chair will be a necessary back up, especially for school.  One down side is transporting it.  A manual chair can be taken apart and put into most vehicles.  A power chair cannot be taken apart, therefore, the need for a vehicle becomes critical.

School – Mike has decided to wait until September to take more classes at the university.  A number of factors have influenced his decision i.e. no vehicle, he is learning how to maneuver in snow, we don’t know when we’ll actually be moved into the house, etc.  It’s one thing to get to classes on time but there will be note taking, assignments, research, etc. and Mike faces a new and often slower way of doing things.  Most people with his type of injury will take a year for “transitions”.  By September, some of this will be old hat!

Other than these highlights, we keep pluggin’ along!  Mike continues to charm others with his smile and generous nature.  Now if only he was better at cleaning up the kitchen….


MacLurgs said...

Hi Barkers,
Good to get the latest info on how things are going. You are in our thoughts, hearts and prayers.
Love the MacLurgs

Tracey Krusz said...

Hello Barker family,
It's amazing how quickly our priorities can be changed by circumstances which are thrust upon us. Wheelchairs, renovations, therapy options---so many things to deal with that were totally irrelevant just a short time ago. You have not only risen to the challenge but are doing it with such humor and grace. Besides faith, I don't think anything helps to get us through life more than a sense of humor---people who have one are way ahead of the game. So, keep on laughing(it sure beats crying) and praying and forging ahead. We'll keep praying in Michigan.

Anonymous said...

Hey Barkers,

It's great to hear how everything's going. I have been and still pray for all of you, including the mini Steve on the way here in MI. Keep on laughing and enjoying every minute! :) Britney h

Anonymous said...

Hello Barker Family,

Please know there are many of us out there praying for all of you. Love and prayer are very powerful and can bring the sun out on the darkest of days.

Smiles~ Sheri Strang

David Booth said...

Hey Mike (and other Barkers)

I'm glad to hear that you'll be going back to University next year. It is a good idea to take a break till next year, so that everything is working smoothly. Besides, nobody likes walking across campus with the cold in their face, wait until fall to find all the indoor shortcuts to classes. Good luck with the rower machine and finding a new chair and vehicle!


Anonymous said...

hey man

mike its good 2 hear that everythings goin well

that ur goin back 2 college n everything sweet deal man

jeff R

DaveKerwin said...

I recommend enrolling on online classes, then you don't have to worry about travel in snow, but you get to stay sharp until you attend class in person. I enjoyed online classes for the most part. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Mike you are an awesome young man. Keep up the good work. Mr. F and Mrs. H

Anonymous said...

Hi Barkers,
Wow a lot of things to consider. Praying that you have patience as you seek out all of these details. I am praying for you all and know that God is keeping you close.
Look forward to seeing pictures?? when you get your reno's done.
I am guessing that you are also trying to get prepared for Christmas as well.
It will be exciting to get a power chair and then a vehicle, praying tat you will just know which is the best suited for you Mike a you look around.
Keep on smiling, apparently yours is a contagious one!
Love to you all,
Susan Hawkes

Anonymous said...

Hey Barker Family,
Last night I watched Extreme Makeover and they happened to be doing a house for a lady who had been shot and was now paralyzed at about the same place Mike is. Not only did they build in some amazing features for her (including a track that runs through out the house and has a harness on it that allows her to 'stand-up' which increases the blood flow to her legs) but they also showed some footage from a recovery centre. They showed dozens of people who were told they had no chance for recovery and yet were standing up on their own. Needless to say it was amazing to see and reminded me again that there is nothing God can't do. Have faith and keep working Mike.

lisa in Crossfield

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas, Barker Family! Hope that this season has you thinking about the grace of God and his never ending mercies and the glory that awaits us!

Faye Polson

Julie-Anne said...

God Bless!

Anonymous said...

Hi Barkers,

Hope you all have a great Christmas and New Year!!! *<:)

*Britney h*

Tracey Krusz said...

Merry Christmas Brenda and Neil!! I guess it will be pretty quiet there with all your boys here in Michigan. It was great to finally meet Mike at church this morning in person. I wasn't in church last night because of our family Christmas party, but I guess you heard via cell phone how surprised Steve was. It will be fun to see the tape. Maybe one of these days you two will be able to visit--I'd love to meet you. May the New Year be filled with joy, hope, love, and the peace that passes understanding.

Anonymous said...


As you all can see from the comment above, Matt and Mike are in Michigan. They were both flown in to surprise Lori and Steve this Christmas. At our Saturday Christmas service at Grace, Steve came up to the platform to announce what he thought was a surprise for another member of Grace. He opened an envolope Academy Award style, to Matt and Mike's names. From what I could tell they were both totally amazed. I know they're both really happy to have family with them for Christmas. My mom asked Lori a few weeks ago what they were doing for Christmas, and she said it would just be the two of them (well three, counting the baby on the way). Anyways, thought I'd leave an update for you all who check in regularly.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!!
Britney h

Anonymous said...

Merry Belated Christmas, Barkers! Just wanted to write a quick note to let you know I think of you all often, pray for you, and check this blog a lot still!

Glad the boys were able to go down to visit Steve & Lori for Christmas ... must've been a VERY fun surprise!

Hope the new year is one that, though filled with many new challenges and difficulties even, will be filled with God's grace and the knowledge that He is always there with you, especially in the valleys, as Ps. 142:3 says.

Britney h, thanks for helping keep us updated!