Friday, April 18, 2008


Approximately a week ago, Matt had an infection in one of the temporary closures of the incisions. This infection did not significantly affect Matt's leg. With antibiotic treatment and changing the closure, the infection was rendered harmless. After treating the infection, Matt had surgery late last week to permanently close the two remaining incisions. The surgery was successful. Matt continues to recover from the surgery nicely. Therapy and time are the two remaining hurdles for Matt. However, as of Friday, April 15, Matt will be coming home. Matt will be discharged at some point near the middle of the day. They will be making their way back to Somerville from Jackson. Matt will continue to need a significant amount of therapy to resume normal activities, which we know includes time spent playing golf. We surely look forward to seeing Matt in person in the near future. However, the Kelley's should be allowed a time to reacclimatize themselves with having Matt at home and their new schedule. Hopefully, more information will posted early next week regarding opportunities to visit or communicate with Matt. Until then, continue to leave your messages on this blog and check back for pictures later today.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008


On Monday, Matt was moved from his room on the dialysis floor of the hospital to the rehabilitation section of the hospital. This rehab center is located within the hospital complex itself. Matt has embraced this move as another step in the right direction of leaving this hospital. He will receive therapy several times throughout the day for a few hours each day. As a result of Matt's recent surgery, he has an added level of freedom to move about the rehab center in a wheelchair. Matt has enjoyed only fifteen minutes outside of the hospital since February 5. Matt anticipates some added mobility and opportunities to move outside the rehab center onto their patio. The four permanent incision closures have began to heal nicely. At this point, time will aid in the healing of Matt's incisions. However, he endures a significant amount of pain as a result of the skin graft procedures. In the coming weeks, doctors anticipate another skin graft procedure for the remaining two temporary incision closures. We should continue to pray for Matt's appetite to improve, his tolerance of pain from the skin grafts and his tolerance of pain from the therapy to be administered. Let us remain to committed for prayer on behalf of David, Candy and Christin.

Friday, March 28, 2008

The Downhill Run

Matt had a successful surgery on Wednesday afternoon to close the remaining six incisions. Four of the six were closed permanently with two incisions receiving temporary closures. Previously, Matt was aided in his recovery by wound vac systems, one for each incision. As of Wednesday evening, Matt does not use the wound vac systems anymore. This aspect of his treatment was a confining system and in use around the clock. These are additional steps in the long road to Matt's complete recovery. Matt has recovered from the surgery as we had hoped. However, his return to normal activities remains out there in the future. Skin grafts were necessary for the closure of his incisions. Matt's appetite and quantity of food consumption need to increase. His lower GI sustained a significant shock during his injuries on February 5. Matt remains unable to consume average quantities of food for meals or snacks. Matt might eat only half of a Subway sandwich. As you can imagine, this is typically not a problem for a college student to finish a whole sandwich and look for more. Please continue to pray for the many facets of Matt's recovery. Pray for no infections in the incision closures, his appetite and the therapy that continues. When the medical staff views Matt's recovery from surgery and overall condition to be satisfactory, they plan to move Matt to another floor within the hospital. This will be the rehabilitation portion of his recovery. Matt will be actively engaged in many efforts to strengthen his legs and coordinate his walking. Most of us have heard the quip, 'rehab is for quitters.' In Matt's condition, rehab is certainly not for quitters. Individually, we can be encouraged by Matt's daily battle with his own body to regain strength and activity as he had before the storms. Also, continue to remember the Kelley's in your prayers for Candy's strength, David's split life between Jackson and Somerville, and Christin's unpredictable schedule with school and family. It should be noted that Candy traveled back to Somerville last weekend to assist in preparations for the prom with Christin. As you might suspect, she enjoyed her time with Christin and equally anxious to get back to the business of Matt's treatment and recovery.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Getting Closer

Surgery is being considered for Matt later this week. The surgery will close the remaining 6 incisions on his legs. Candy has remarked about Matt's leg and about seeing his kneecap on his left leg. However, as one would expect with any invasive procedure, surgery can be an unpredictable event. Let us pray for Matt's successful surgery and the recovery to follow. Please pray specifically for infection to be no problem with this procedure. The surgical staff has included a plastic surgeon in preparation for these procedures. Considering the nature of Matt's injuries and treatment with incisions, a skin graft might be necessary. Matt continues to be very weak and lacks stamina for his therapy and other aspects of treatment. Matt's stomach has yet to regain its original abilities to consume and digest food compared to the time prior to the storms. Please remember the Kelley family during this week and the impending treatment. When the medical staff is satisfied with the recovery from surger, Matt may be moving to the rehabilitation phase very soon. The rehabilitation center is located within the hospital. Preliminary estimates for Matt's move to the rehab center would be approximately one week after surger. However, this may change contingent upon Matt's recovery.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Spring, Sun & Softball

Matt's high school, Fayette Academy, is planning an annual alumni weekend for April 5, 2008. Fayette Academy will honor Matt's with the activities of the weekend. More information can be found on Fayette Academy's website at Any questions about participation should be directed to Charlotte Karcher with Fayette Academy at 901-465-3295.


Matt's progress continues to be very slow and somewhat methodical. Matt has remained independent of dialysis for a period exceeding two weeks. The swelling in his legs continues to decrease. However, the left leg remains swollen significantly. Pain is one source of discomfort for Matt in recent days. As the circulation in the lower extremitites improves, pain becomes increasingly difficult to endure. Matt does receive some regular pain medication. Matt's diet and food consumption continue to improve with each day. The Kelley's have consulted with the surgical staff about an impending surgery to close all six incisions. As of Wednesday, the 19th, surgeons anticipate scheduling a surgery for the middle of next week. A definitive date and time have not been set. As we know, this will consume a considerable amount of time due to the delicate nature of the procedure and the quantity of incisions to be closed. The other two incisions are healing nicely albeit slow paced. Matt's physical therapy continues to be a rigorous regimen of activity. Matt will be assisted in moving from the bed to a wheelchair or an armchair. Matt will make slow progress from his room and down the hall. Matt's legs do not bear a any significant amount of weight at this point. Most of Matt's walking is done with the aid of therapists. Matt uses a walker and relies on his arms for support. The sensation in his legs continues to improve. This will become increasingly helpful as he regains more substantive use of his legs. Matt has commented about his legs becoming a bit heavier and able to bear a slight load. However, the road leading to independent walking will surely be slow and difficult. Matt eats his meals seated in a chair in the room. The movement from prone positions to seated positions is steady and frequently painful. As each day draws to close, Matt is exhausted from the activities of the day. However, Matt does receive visits from family and his golf teammates. Matt's optimism and demeanor improve significantly when teammates update him with each day's practice results and weekly tournament results. The banter about missed putts or low scores stirs Matt's interest and participation in the conversation. Matt's physical battles ahead certainly loom large. However, the battle for Matt's mental health is certainly not questionable. Please continue to pray for Matt's impending surgery, David's and Candy's trepidation with the surgery and recovery ahead, and Matt's slow recovery after the surgery.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Beware, The Ides of March

The ides of March should be embraced with guarded optimism. Matt's right leg appears to be nearing a normal size as swelling has diminished. The swelling in the left leg has been reduced. However, some significant swelling remains. Matt has not received dialysis treatment since March 4. Doctors believe Matt's kidneys are well on their way to recovery. However, the possibility of future dialysis exists and will be administered as needed. A visit from the surgical staff is expected on Friday to discuss the possibility of closure of incisions. This surgery may not be immediate. However, surgery is another step in the process of recovery. Matt has been sitting in a chair on a daily basis. All movement is closely assisted by physical therapists. Earlier in the week, Matt seized the opportunity to go outside in a wheelchair for fifteen minutes of fresh air. Matt tires quickly from any significant physical activity. Matt utilizes a walker when walking. However, his knees can easily be compared to spaghetti. Simply, Matt is learning to walk again. Matt has done this once in his life. Naturally, he does not remember this. He will remember this relearning of a perceived natural skill. Matt has some sensation in his right leg. He has limited sensation in the upper section of his right leg. His lower left leg does not have significant sensation. However, sensation should return when circulation to these extremities improves. On occasion, Matt is frustrated with the pace of improvement and recovery. He does remain committed to recovery at any pace. Let us give thanks for his recovery until now. We should also remain committed to consistent prayer for Matt's full recovery.

Monday, March 10, 2008

To The Door?

Matt remains independent of dialysis since last Tuesday. Assumptions of normal kidney function would be considered a bit premature. However, the progress is embraced and eagerly accepted. The swelling in Matt's legs continues its slow decline. The reduction in swelling is noticeable and measureable. Matt was exhausted after his physical therapy activities today. Therapists elevated Matt into a chair again. However, the most substantial improvement is walking with assistance to the door. Indeed, Matt did walk from the bed to the door today with careful assistance from therapists. His overall condition continues to improve. However, let us be guarded in our optimism. We can surely take the full measure of a slow recovery into account. May we be thankful for answered prayers. May we also be equally committed to prayer for Matt's full recovery.