Monday, March 9, 2009

Love has eyes...

   So does Hollis.  She'll show 'em to you when she's back in the bay. Both of her beautiful brown eyes.  They're having a little trouble syncing up but her right is definitely looking at us, and the left is doing stuff.  To the point that she even seems to get a slightly warmer expression when you get up in her face and smile and tell her you love her so much, and kiss her on the cheek.  When you kiss her like it were gonna wake up the sleeping beauty that she is.   Her mom and I did this at the same time on either cheek when we said goodbye today. It was downright heartwarming.
  She did two other amazing things.  The first was that her mouth, (once slack jawed and drooling) has been regaining it's grace but at first was slightly open. I pushed it closed.  She then responded by chewing three or four times!  I almost jumped.  Diane (mom) didn't see it, so I went to try it again. All of her reactions have been so sporadic we didn't expect any miraculous repeat performance, but she did it every time.   She is responding, she is relearning how to swallow and chew and blink and...  Now for the second big one... I obviously have been holding fast to her hand throughout and in the beginning when she was  fighting for her life she was squeezing my hand so hard that I had to clip her nails cause I thought she was going to draw blood.  They have since gone limp.  But it is amazing to me how well the human hand fits in another hand whether it's gripping or not.  Like we were meant to... well you get it.  Today I grabbed hold and was shocked almost electrically to feel something clasping back.  It was ever so slight but it wasn't like it flinched and it happened twice.  She gripped... let go... and then gripped again and then slowly let go again. Nothing strong but it was there.  Amazing.
  So tomorrow the two doctors who will potentially be accompanying her back home are supposed to have a meeting to talk to the Visa people but it looks like that may not happen because they are only allowed to pay with 'a money order from HDFC' and that's it. HDFC closed  at 3 instead of 5 today and they were in the emergency room.  Her head doctor put in a call to his good friend who is the head of an HDFC bank but he said there was nothing he could do. Only that there is an Islamic holiday tomorrow and so tomorrow also, all the banks are closed.  Bureaucratic bull at every turn with paper work in India but maybe the consulate will get it together.
   She is getting transferred to her new room tonight with a cot, a chair, a TV, a marble bathroom and a microwave (the first I've seen in India, everything else is mostly cooked over hot coals or on dried cow patties).  I can finally play songs for her on the guitar and we can spend as much time with her as we want. We also debuted some new big ol headphones that go around her ears  and block out other sound so she can focus on the music.  Hollis is listening to a lot of Dark Dark Dark of course, Jolie Holland, Bon Iver (sent in to, Otis Redding, A Silver Mount Zion and a recording Josh sent in of some little kid and his dad singing an awesome song in the street in Tibet.  She (her beautiful brown eyes) like Dark Dark Dark the best. I think they might have magic powers.


  1. there are all kinds of theories about music.. one of the stronger ones is about mozart, and how the math in his music, helps build little brains. worth a shot.

  2. Harrison,

    You continue to amaze and warm my heart with your updates. I keep crying everytime I hear the next bit of news...and not at all in a bad way but a way of hope that continues to rise like the fucking phoenix she is...;-)

    We used to listen to Milla Jovovich back in the day as well as Bjork. They illuded time and space and gave only a reaction of pure joy for us....

    Thank you as always for the love and incredible support you are meant to be....well you know what I mean.;-)

    Much love and blessings dear....


  3. I have never met Hollis but do know a friend of hers who turned me on to this story.
    I just read a book that knocked my socks off. It's called "The Brain That Changes Itself" by Norman Doige ( )
    It seems like it could be a very important book for you all as it shows how he brain can be rehabilitated after traumatic accidents contrary to what science has believed.
    I know you none of you who are close to Hollis have much free time but I really encourage you to read it for her sake and recovery and to know what all the options are including some not yet mainstream approaches.
    sending light

  4. I was going to mention that classical music--mozart being a good example--is recommended for playing to babies because it supposedly stimulates their brains. I was thinking something similar might be worth a shot for Hollis. I'm sure you wouldn't want to put her on a steady diet of Mozart-lol, but maybe work it into the general rotation.

    And how about smells? The sense of smell is one of the most basic, and is the most powerful for evoking memory. Maybe nice smells that recall pleasant times would be interesting to try with her. . .or just stimulating ones that challenge her brain?

  5. I'm in complete agreement with playing the Mozart; I think you should play music she recognizes and likes, but it's true Mozart has a positive influence on brain development. Hollis is in a very critical period now, and the effect of anything positive you do for her at this point will be multiplied.

    I was just searching YouTube for a video I saw a couple of years back about train safety in India:

    I guess this translates to auto safety, too. Wow.

  6. How coincidental.
    DarkDarkDark is playing at The Caretakers (my house) at the end of this month!!
    Maybe they could go to Stanford and do a live performance! haha. I laugh but anything is possible.