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Alicia

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Reply with quote  #1 

Today is a good day, it is snowing down in Akron.  Since I have my own laptop computer in my room, this is where I work from.  I have now my own computer,  but no time to have it installed, via Barbara Wilhem, motherhouse administration and AJ, our computer guy.  They have had no time to connect my printer.  I think I will try to do it myself.!!!! ya, ya, ya.  I have my own blog, ALICIA,S PERSONAL JOURNEY.  I ALSO DO FACEBOOK AND TWITTER.  HOW ABOUT THAT AFTER WHAT HAPPENED TO MY BRAIN.  MUCH OF MY COMPUTER SKILLS HAVE COME BACK!! MY BEDROOM IS MY OFFICE!! I AM GOING THROUGH ALL THE BOXES THAt ARE IN OUR TRUNK ROOM THAT ANN AND MARIA BROUGHT BACK HERE TO THE CONVENT.  I AM FINDING THINGS THAT HELP ME TO BRING BACK MY LONG TERM MEMORY.  I HAVE CALLED PEOPLE AND SENT EMAILS OF THE BUSINESS CARDS I HAVE FOUND TRYING TO BRING BACK WHAT I LOST!! IT IS QUITE EXCITING FOR ME TO DO THIS!! I HAVE LOOKED AT MY PICTURE ALBUMS OF MY TRIPS TO SPAIN, LANDS OF DOMINIC AND EL SALVADOR, COLOMBIA, NICARAGUA, IT IS AMAZING WHAT I RECOGNIZE AND KNOW!! I AM VERY HAPPY AT THIS TIME OF MY RECOVERY. IT WILL BE THREE YEARS ON MAY 21st, 2008 THIS MAY.  MY GOAL IS TO GET BACK TO DRIVING.ON MY THIRD ANNIVERSARY, I HAVE AN APPOINTMENT WITH MY PRIMARY DOCTOR AND I WILL ASK HERE FOR A REQUEST FOR  A SPECIAL PROGRAM FOR THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN IN REHABILITATION TO GET BACK TO DRIVING.  THIS IS AT EDWIN SHAWL REHABILATION CENTER HERE IN AKRON.  ONCE THAT BECOMES A REALITY, I WILL BE ABLE TO GET MYSELF TO MEETINGS IN CLEVELAND AND BECOME ACTIVE(some what).  I HAVE GOT TO REMEMBER THAT I DO NOT WANT TO GET BACK TO THE OLD WAY, WHERE I WAS TO BUSY WITH DOING TOO MANY THINGS AT ONCE!! I REALIZE THAT AND I WILL PACE MYSELF IN WHAT I CAN DO AND NOT DO! CONTINUE TO KEEP ME IN YOUR PRAYERS, IT IS WHAT BROUGHT ME BACK!!! ALL THE PRAYERS!!!


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Alicia Alvarado
rdonovan

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Reply with quote  #2 
Sister Alicia: I am very happy to hear about your progress. Happy belated birthday! Bernice Cruz always ask me about you or give me news friom you.  Still praying for a speeding recovery. May the Lord bless you and give you peace.
With love, Ruth Donovan.

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Ruth B. Donovan
Alicia

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Reply with quote  #3 
I AM BACK!! PRAISE GOD!! THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR LOVE AND PRAYERS DURING MY ILLNESS. IT WILL BE 3 YEARS ON MAY 21ST, 2011 OF MY ANEURYSM. I WAS READING ALL THE POSTS THAT SR. MARY ANN AND GLADYS SANTIAGO POSTED ON THIS BOARD.  MY NEUROLOGIST HAS SAID I HAVE DONE A MARVELOUS RECOVERY AS OF MARCH OF LAST YEAR.  I AM SO HAPPY TO BE ALIVE!! I CAN REMEMBER LOTS OF THINGS NOW. PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR ME BECAUSE MY NEXT GOAL IS TO BE ABLE TO GET BACK TO DRIVING!! YES!!! SO THAT I CAN GET TO THE PLACES THAT I NEED TO GO!! I LOVE YOU ALL VERY MUCH!! I AM BACK TO THE COMPUTER AND I AM DOING THIS FROM MY OWN LAPTOP GIVEN TO ME BY MY FAMILY. I WILL CONTINUE TO POST TO KEEP YOU IN THE LOOP!! I AM GOING TO WRITE MY STORY SOME DAY.  I HAVE LISTENED TO THE BOOK ON TAPE:  MY STROKE OF INSIGHT, A BRAIN SCIENTISTS PERSONAL JOURNEY BY DR. JILL BOLTE TAYLOR, WHO SUFFERED FROM A STROKE. MY SISTER LUCIA GOT THE BOOK ON TAPE FOR ME TO LISTEN TO IT.  DR. TAYLOR TOO HAD TO START ALL OVER AGAIN, LIKE ME, FROM WALKING, TALKING, DOING THINGS FOR MYSELF.  I WILL WRITE MY BOOK SOME DAY TOO WITH THE HELP OF MY FRIENDS.  IT WAS GREAT TO READ ALL THE POSTS ON THIS BOARD AND I WHOLE HEARTLY THANK GLADYS SANTIAGO FOR HER FRIENDSHIP AND DEDICATION TO ME DURING MY ILLNESS. THANK YOU MARY ANN AND ALL MY FAMILY FOR THEIR DEDICATION AS WELL.  STAY TUNE!!!!!!!


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Alicia Alvarado
GladysSantiago

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Reply with quote  #4 
Hello Everyone,
Update on Sister Alicia - this update is per her request LOL. Suffice to say, Alicia is doing very well in comparison to the last update. She is in process of creating her own message board so that she may keep everyone updated and respond to your messages personally.  Looking left and right....she is ALWAYS on the internet emailing this or that. LOL. 

Although she is a bit mellow than how we knew her she is still quite expressive. She is learning more and more about her long-held convictions. This mental recovery is still underway...understanding where her convictions stem from and how they are triggered. Truthfully, some are so strong they never left her!  Anyway, she can provide clarity on this and other things she has been working on. 

What's more important is that she will be celebrating another birthday on Dec. 31st. Happy Birthday Sister Alicia!  So glad you're still around to laugh and cajole.

Love you,
Gladys
Dominican Associate of Peace
twimbly

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Reply with quote  #5 

I am Timothy Wimbly, Bernice was a student in my class at Thomas Jefferson in Cleveland.  Please let her know that i would like to contact her.  My emial address is twimbly@aol.com, phone number 4054147574


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Timothy Wimbly, MD
Bernice

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Reply with quote  #6 

I am very thrilled to know Sister Alicia is doing much better...I was in Cleveland last August and was unable to see her due to her condition...but I called and the Sister gave me hopes for Sister Alicia...as you may remember, I know Sister Alicia since teen years and please tell her that Bernice Cruz will always still be praying for her because God is wonderful and works in strange ways...it is just time...and a month for us may be a day for our wonderful Lord....so please give her a hug for me.  God bless you!! Bernice Alicia Cruz

Laural

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Reply with quote  #7 

I graduated with Sister Alicia and attended the 40th St. Stephen's Reunions with Sister. Please let Sister Alicia know that all of her classmates are praying for her.  Also, tell her that we are going to have to tell her Mother Superior that she was "cheating" on the answers to our "TRIVIA QUESTIONS" we passes out that night.  Everytime, Sister didn't know the answers to the questions, she would open up our yearbook to find the answers....and then she would belt them out.  I had to keep asking her not to cheat!  She was soooo funny that night.  Sister had a great time and we soooooo enjoyed her presence there!!!  That was not even a week before her illness struck!  I know that God will grant her a full recovery, even though it may take some time.  I'm grateful that I was given this website to find out about her recovery.  The last update is in July.  How is sister doing now?  I think Sister may have needed a rest, because whenever she does something she knows no other speeds than FAST, FASTER and FASTEST!!! How much she has accomplished through her vocation and dedication to the community.  Please let her know that Laural is praying for her.  Also, let her know that another classmate, Carol Gilblock stopped by to see her with flowers, recently.  We look for to another update.  If there is anything Sister needs or if there is anything her classmates from St. Stephens can do for her and her family, please let us know.  We have pictures from the reunion with sister in them.  Please forward an address where we can send them to her!!!  Our prayers and love to her!  God Bless!

rdonovan

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Reply with quote  #8 

Praise the Lord for sister Alicia continuous recuperation. I keep her in my thoughts and prayers. I have talking to Bernice Cruz, from PR. She grew up with sister Alicia. I have been updating her about sister Alicia. May the Lord bless sister Alicia and family. With love, Ruth Donovan


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Ruth B. Donovan
Info4you

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Reply with quote  #9 
A message for Sister Alicia from:
 
Bernice A. Cruz and Family
Humacao, Puerto Rico
 
Dear Alicia:
 
There’s a lot of talk about angels these days and about all the things people say they can do. It is nice to know that powerful and glorious invisible angels help and defend us in our lives. They are the Lord's messengers for each one of us. I picture them as being near us day and night and especially whenever life seems trying and difficult. I like to think that angels are taking special care of you right now, and I hope you can feel their gentle presence day by day…just as I hope you feel the nearness of all the loving thoughts of those of us who care so much about you. My thoughts and prayers are with you always.
 
Just know that you have your old childhood friend, Bernice Alicia Cruz and family here for you and your family. You have so many people holding you up in God's prayer right now. Keep fighting the fight. You know that you have all of these wonderful sisters and brothers to help you keep going!!
I myself have always known that you are a very courageous woman.  Keep your spirits up and trust in God, your family and friends to help you during these dark days.  Never underestimate the power of prayer.  We are all praying for you and hope that you will soon be healthy, happy and brightening up everybody's day with your radiant smile!
 
Please take care of yourself, while the Lord and his angels also care for you!
 
Love and regards to the family,
 
Bernice A. Cruz and Family
Humacao, Puerto Rico

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Promueve la diversidad dentro de nuestra propia comunidad hispana en cualquier lugar de EE.UU. / Promote diversity even among our own Hispanic Community anywhere in the USA.
TotyMartin

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Reply with quote  #10 
Acabo de enterarme del problema de salud de la Hna Alicia y quisiera hacerle llegar tanto a ella como a su familia mis mejores deseos para que pueda recuperarse y continuar con su vida tan activa e influente en nuestra comunidad. Ella es una de esos pilares que mantiene toda una estructura y su presencia, ya sea física o emocional/espiritual siempre nos ha servido de inspiración como comunidad y como individuos. Que la Hna Alicia recuerde que ella es una modelo para muchos de nosotros, que muchísimos la apreciamos, y que todos nos unimos para recordarle que la queremos y que estaremos haciendo fuerza para que se recupere lo más pronto posible. Nuestras oraciones y amor están con ella y su familia.

Toty Martin
andyandino

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Reply with quote  #11 
Hi Sr. Alicia,

Just want you to know that myself and my family are praying for you. San Juan Bautista was a pivotal time in my life. Although Sr. Nancy and Fr Domingo shaped me, having you as a roll model that had come before was very important to me. Thank you for all of your work and love.

Wishing you a marvelous recovery
Blessings
Andy Andino


Info4you

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Reply with quote  #12 

From: springdali@yahoo.com

 

Hi,
Just want to say that from here and across the country during my travels, I've been keeping up with this unfortunate event.  Give a kiss to Sr. Alicia for me and let her know that I'm praying for her and the family.  Carefully begin to prepare her mentally for a long recovery and for rehab to come.  She is such a strong woman.  I'm afraid that when she realizes she is probably not going to be able to walk out of the hospital as if nothing occurred, that her spunkiness may be dampered.  Dios sabe lo que hace....she just may walk out of there, as if nothing occurred...  We need to remind her that she will be able to do even greater things having come out of this trauma so far.  We know she is a great person, just wait to see her be even better....

 

God Bless her and everyone!

Love & Peace,
~Migdalia

P.S.  Nice job Gladys, et. al. for the message board!


******

(From: M. Santiago-White, C.P.C., M.H.S.A.)

All,
It is with great compassion that I write to you to express my sincere sentiments on this family-community situation.  Please know this from first hand observation, that Sister Alicia could be in no better place at this critical time in her life.  Sister is in good hands at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.  In the last 3 weeks, I just finished working with the nurses and physicians implementing the electronic health record at CCF-- right in the very same unit Sister is in now. 
 
The nurses are assigned no more than 2 patients.  They work on their feet the entire time monitoring and carrying out the physicians' orders 24x7.  The physicians are on the unit as well.  This is the ICU.  These people are constantly attending the patients--lots of activity.  They have to remember everything!  They work hard and fast, and their heart is in their work; they do not sit down and may have a chance to eat lunch.  They also work long hours, some pulling double shifts. 
 
The nurses do care that we care, but they really need to keep mindful of their mantra:  Patient care is first and foremost; and privacy is important.  It is not that they do not want to take our calls, it is that they have to carry out the physicians' orders in a timely fashion and time is very important when a life is on the line. 
 
It is an amazing thing to have witnessed.  A beautiful thing is happening here...  People caring for people.  We are all about this as well, and Sister Alicia would want it no other way....     
 
God Bless us all!
 
Sincerely,
~Migdalia  
 
Peace to you and yours!ÿ
M. Santiago-White, C.P.C., M.H.S.A.

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Promueve la diversidad dentro de nuestra propia comunidad hispana en cualquier lugar de EE.UU. / Promote diversity even among our own Hispanic Community anywhere in the USA.
Info4you

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Reply with quote  #13 

EN ESPAÑOL

Traducción de los comunicados escritos por Gladys Santiago, a quien agradecemos por mantenernos informados sobre el delicado estado de salud de Sor Alicia Alvarado. Para enviar un mensaje, simplemente haga click en Reply y escriba en español o en English. A Sor Alicia le agradará leer los mensajes que le hayan enviado una vez que esté totalmente recuperada.
 
*****************************************************

Miércoles, Junio 18 @ 10:00 AM
"Alicia llegó al Centro de Recuperación en una ambulancia alrededor de las 4:15 p.m. Cuando me vió me dijo "Well" con una gran sonrisa. Me reconoció. Cuando la pusieron en la cama y se sintió confortable, dijo "Wow." Su familia también estaba allí y comenzamos a charlar con ella, Alicia respondía con una o dos palabras apropiadas a la conversación. Todavía no puede formar frases. Cuando le dije que la quería, en español y en inglés, se le iluminaron los ojos y respondió "Yes." Nosotros le hablamos en español y en inglés y ella respondía apropiadamente como podía. Se nota que ella trata de encontrar las palabras con que comunicarse.

Cuando la directora del centro de recuperación escuchó las respuestas de Alicia, hizo un comentario diciendo que ella era una buena candidata para las sesiones de terapia. Un empleado de este centro quien visitó a Alicia en la Clinica el jueves 12 pasado, se sorprendió gratamente del progreso de Alicia. Hoy, el departamento de terapia le estará haciendo una evaluación." 

Los rezos de ustedes mueve montañas.  ¡Por favor continúen rezando para que Alicia se recupere totalmente!
Con amor,
Gladys
*****************************************************
Sábado, Junio 14, @ 11:00 AM
A Sor Alicia la trasladarán el lunes a un centro de salud en Bay Village.  Eventualmente necesitará hacer rehabilitación, pero en estos momentos no está lista para el programa de rehabilitación intenso de MetroHealth. La familia de ella ha considerado cuidadosamente varios factores y afortunadamente encontraron un centro de salud que cumple con todos los requisitos. 
 
Los médicos están sorprendidos con el progreso de ella pero siguen diciendo que aun le falta mucho camino que recorrer en su rehabilitación.  Ella está bastante conciente. Ella y todos nosotros estamos ansiosos de que se recupere pronto. Sin embargo, no sabemos cuánto tiempo va llevar esa recuperación. Nadie puede predecirlo.  Una vez más, les haremos saber si hay cambios en las reglas de visitas.  Por favor no se olviden de seguir incluyéndola en sus plegarias y de apoyarse mutuamente. 
 
Continúen enviándole buenos augurios tal como les dije en mi mensaje anterior más abajo. Para aquellos que están utilizando este medio de comunicación (message board) para enviarle mensajes, sepan que yo le entregaré (a Sor Alicia) esos mensajes esta semana. 
 
Amor y Paz a Todos,
Gladys
****************************************************

Jueves,  Junio 12 @ 9:00PM
"Sor Alicia se está recuperando lenta pero paulatinamente. Los médicos están discutiendo la posibilidad de trasladarla al Programa de Terapia Intensiva de MetroHealth.  Pero, la decisión todavía no se ha hecho. Continúan las restricciones sobre las visitas. Por favor entiendan que eso es lo mejor para Sor Alicia.  Les avisaremos cuando haya un cambio en esa decisión. Gracias a todos por pensar en ella, por sus rezos y apoyo."
 
Es fantástico!  En verdad ... existe el milagro cuando la comunidad se une detrás de una causa común. Sabemos que Sor Alicia está orgullosa de su comunidad! 
 
Paz y Amor,
Gladys
****************************************************

Jueves, 5 de junio de 2008 @ 12:00 PM
Mensaje de la familia de Sor Alicia:
"Alicia ha salido de la Unidad de Cuidados Intensivos - ha escalado un nivel de recuperación.  Tiene mucho camino que recorrer para poder recuperar todas sus funciones. Las visitas continúan sindo restringidas y se permiten solamente a sus familiares inmediatos. Ella se muestra frustrada ya que le cuesta comunicarse verbalmente y le cuesta aceptar el proceso de recuperación al cual deberá someterse.  Pero lo más importante es que se encuentra cada día mejor. Por favor continúen rezando por ella. Gracias por el continuo apoyo de todos ustedes"
 
"Agradecemos y les pedimos que le envíen tarjetas de buenos augurios (Por favor no envíen flores).  Con todo gusto les vamos a leer a ella las tarjetas que ustedes escriban.  Por favor envíen sus tarjetas a: Ms. Lourdes Alvarado Dorsey, c/o Sister Alicia Alvarado, Sagrada Familia Church, 7719 Detroit Ave. Cleveland, OH 44102." 
 
Recen al Señor para que la recuperación de Sor Alicia sea una realidad
También pueden enviar sus buenos deseos de recuperación respondiendo a estos mensajes. Les aseguro que ella recibirá todos los mensajes que ustedes le envíen por este medio. (simplemente haga click en "reply" y rellene unos cuantos casilleros para enviar su mensaje).
 
Amor y Paz,
Gladys
 
****************************************************
 
Domingo, 1 de junio de 2008 @ 6:18 PM

Mensaje de la familia de Sor Alicia:

"Ayer, Alicia comenzó a respirar sin la ayuda del respirador artificial", al cual estaba conectada desde el primer día que la ingresaron al hospital para estabilizar sus funciones vitales. "Alicia está mejorando paulatinamente. Hoy, comenzó a hablar, aunque todavía muy poco." 
 
Oh Lord, quisiera escuchar a Alicia hablando sobre todo lo que le pasó.  
Ella permanece en la UCI ... Por favor continúen rezando por su completo recuperamiento!
Love,
Gladys
 
*****************************************************

Jueves, Mayo/29/08 @ 12:00 PM 

Mensaje de la familia de Sor Alicia:

"No hay grandes cambios en su estado de salud todavía. Está respondiendo mejor y más alerta. Continúa en la UCI. Aparte de eso, todo sigue igual. Gracias a todos por seguir rezando por ella.  Por favor compartan con otras personas que las restricciones en cuanto a las visitas a la UCI no son de la familia sino reglas del hospital.  Gracias por su paciencia y comprensión." 

 

Sepan que se permiten visitas únicamente en la sala de espera conjuntamente con amigos y/o parientes de otros pacientes de la UCI.  Recuerden que es muy posible que no encuentren allí a ningún miembro de la familia de Sor Alicia ya que posiblemente ellos están en la habitación cerca de ella. 

 
Como siempre, por favor continúen rezando por su recuperación. 
Amor & Paz,
Gladys
 
***************************************************
Martes, 5/27/08 @ 4:50PM
Mensaje de la familia de Sor Alicia:
"Ella sabe que estamos en la habitación.  Sigue en la Unidad de Cuidados Intensivos. Su equipo médico le está atendiendo muy bien y continuan estabilizando todas sus funciones. Estamos cansados pero con optimismo.  Sabemos que muchas personas están pensando en ella y con deseos de hacer algo por ella.  En este momento, todo lo que podemos hacer es seguir rezando por Sor Alicia, por nuestra familia y por los que la están cuidando. Una vez más, gracias por todo ese cariño que nos han demostrado."     
 
Amor & Paz a todos,
Gladys
***************************************************** 
Lunes., 5/25/08 @ 6pm
Sor Alicia continúa progresando pero sigue en estado de cuidado.  Por lo que me dijeron sus familiares, el domingo estuvo dando signos de que entendía lo que le decían sus familiares. "Ella continúa en la Unidad de Cuidados Intensivos y seguimos su recuperación del angiograma paso a paso. Los médicos dicen que gracias a que hemos actuado con rapidez ella sigue con vida, y que es casi un milagro."  Estoy segura que el poder de los rezos también tiene mucho que ver con ello .  
 
Por favor, continúen rezando por Sor Alicia.  Sus familiares también piden que recemos por su padre Don Felipe quien también tiene sus problemas de salud y quien depende mucho de Sor Alicia.
 
Con cariño,
Gladys
 
*****************************************************
5/24/08 @ 11:15AM
Mensaje de la familia de Sor Alicia:
"Ayer mostró signos de movimientos concientes pero permanece en la Unidad de Cuidados Intensivos.  Les haremos saber cuando haya algún cambio. Continúen rezando por ella. Gracias por el apoyo que nos dan. Lo apreciamos sinceramente."  
 
Por favor recen un rosario por la recuperación de Sor Alicia.
Con cariño,
Gladys
*****************************************************
 
Viernes, 23 de Mayo de 2008
@ 5:06 PM -
En respuesta a muchas preguntas: Por favor NO ENVIAR flores en este momento, no le llegarán ya que ella se encuentra en la Unidad de Cuidados Intensivos.  Pueden enviarle tarjetas a la Cleveland Clinic.  Su familia se encargará de recibir las tarjetas.   Gracias.
 
@ 4:11 PM:
Mensaje de la familia de Sor Alicia:
"Gracias por vuestras oraciones!!  Ella muestra signos de progreso y se está recuperando. Ella es definitivamente una luchadora."  ... ya sabíamos eso de ella
 
Rueguen al Señor para que se recupere pronto!
Cariños a todos,
Gladys

***************************************************

Queridos familiares y amigos: 
 
En caso de que no lo sepan, Sor Alicia (Alvarado) está internada en un hospital. 
 
Información:
¡Las visitas están restringidas y la situación es de cuidado!   
La enfermera dice que, "La condición de ella es seria".  
 
Si usted llama a la Clínica le dirán que su estado es (serio, estable, etc....) y eso es todo lo que le dirán.  Basta decir, que hubo numerosas llamadas averiguando su condición a tal punto que las mismas están causando cierta dificultad al personal que atiende directamente a Sor Alicia. No sé que puedo decirles, pero creo que el esfuerzo de ese personal debe dirigirse a atender a Sor Alicia.  Estén seguros, que ellos saben que están cuidando a alguien muy especial y muy querido.  
 
Mis observaciones:  
Fui a verla anoche y soy testigo de la magnífica atención médica que está recibiendo para estabilizar su salud.  El proceso utilizado para controlar la hemorragia del aneurisma cerebral es prometedor ... conjuntamente con su deseo de seguir viviendo, las plegarias de los que están cerca y lejos de ella, y lo más importante, la Voluntad del Señor. 
 
En este momento, recemos para que se haga la Voluntad del Señor.   
 
Por favor obedezcan el pedido de la familia en restringir las visitas y los contactos directos (llamadas al hospital).  Para obtener más información sobre la condición de Sor Alicia, visite este sitio web periódicamente. 
 
(escrito por Gladys Santiago)
 

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Promueve la diversidad dentro de nuestra propia comunidad hispana en cualquier lugar de EE.UU. / Promote diversity even among our own Hispanic Community anywhere in the USA.
GladysSantiago

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Reply with quote  #14 
Texto en español más abajo
Dec 20, 2010
Hello Everyone,
Update on Sister Alicia - this update is per her request LOL. Suffice to say, Alicia is doing very well in comparison to the last update. She is in process of creating her own message board so that she may keep everyone updated and respond to your messages personally.  Looking left and right....she is ALWAYS on the internet emailing this or that. LOL. 

Although she is a bit mellow than how we knew her, she is still quite expressive. She is learning more and more about her long-held convictions. This mental recovery is still underway...understanding where her convictions stem from and how they are triggered. Truthfully, some are so strong they never left her !  Anyway, she can provide clarity on this and other things she has been working on. 

What's more important is that she will be celebrating another birthday on Dec. 31st. Happy Birthday Sister Alicia!  So glad you're still around to laugh and cajole.

Love you,
Gladys
Dominican Associate of Peace
 
 
 
Thurs., Dec 4, 2008:  Update from Sisters and Dominican Associates:
 
Dear All,
I haven't written in quite some time about Alicia's progress. we visited her this afternoon. When we arrived, she was chatting up a storm with Sisters Maria and Ann. She is making "marvelous progress"--the words of her therapist. She went to her father's home for Thanksgiving, negotiating both getting in and out of a car and going up and down steps. That visit with family in the family home was as valuable as any medicine. We hope to bring her to the Elms soon for a short visit.
 
She is walking greater and greater distances each week, most of the time with the help of a walker. Her therapist told me that sometimes, when Alicia is feeling particularly confident, she and Alicia walk hand in hand up and down the hall.
 
Alicia's memory also improves weekly. She will falter over a name or a word here and there, but often does figure it out. Therapy is working to enable her to be so independent that she can come to our assisted living at the Elms. Her therapists believe that if she continues to progress as rapidly as she has been, she may be at the Elms in February. They both said that Alicia is one determined woman (of course, we knew that already!). She would push to the point of collapse but they don't let her go that far.
 
She still does have some trouble with problem solving and with sequencing. For example, when approaching her chair, she knows she is to sit, but forgets to turn around in order to land in the chair. Therapy continues to do exercises in the areas of sequencing and problem solving.
 
We certainly have much to be thankful for during this Thanksgiving season, and Alicia's healing is tops on the list.
 
Grace and peace to you all in Christ Jesus,
Sister Mary Ann

Thurs., Oct 23, 2008:  Update from Sisters and Dominican Associates: 
Dear All,
     Yesterday, we accompanied Alicia back to the Cleveland Clinic for an appointment with her neurosurgeon. This time she went in a wheelchair rather than a stretcher, which is quite a step forward. She endured the hour-trip well in the ambulette. The doctor is most pleased. She passed all her tests well. She had no qualms talking with him, asking questions and letting him know how she felt. She told him she was fine, but had trouble remembering things and wanted to know if her memory would improve. When he said, "Possibly." She said in an incredulous voice, "Possibly? I am working hard." He told her to keep it up; that losing short term memory goes with aneurysms and not to worry about what she couldn't remember. Some things would clear up in time. She seemed satisfied with that although, on the way home, she remarked to us that she feels she has lost half her life.

     The tests given her were in physical therapy and speech therapy. She has the most difficulty naming objects and she knows that she does. She told him directly this is her weakest area along with remembering. He teased her at times and she responded appropriately and quickly. He remarked to us all what a treat it was to get to know her personality. He also said that he wasn't aware that she could talk so much. He smiled broadly all the way through the visit. She followed all directions easily and with no hesitation.

     The MRI revealed a healthy brain in the area of the aneurysm. He is a bit concerned with the amount of fluid remaining in the ventricular cavities even though the shunt is working well. He asked her if she had headaches to which she replied, "No, not at all." She told him that her right leg was aching right now and requested Tylenol for that pain. She told him the pain only occurs once in a while, but this was one of those whiles. He examined her shin and foot and believes that the pain is from sitting so long in one position.  It was a long day for her, but she was a trooper and was in an up mood the entire time.

     She loves all the cards she is getting and told the doctor that she is being prayed for around the world. She asked me to thank everyone and to tell all of you she loves you and prays for you as well.

     What a different report this is from her first doctor visit on June 16.
Sister Mary Ann
 
 
Tues., Sept 30, 2008:  Update from Sisters and Dominican Associates: 
Dear All,

Yesterday was a bit of a downer because I received a call from the nursing home informing me that the insurance company once again said no to paying for further therapy because from the report they received, they didn't believe she was progressing adequately. The folks at the nursing facility urged me to appeal so I began the process. This morning I learned that the psychiatrist (a therapy doctor) had called Medical Mutual, pleading with them to continue the insurance because she was indeed making good progress. So MM has agreed to insure for another week (that is how it has been all along--a week at a time). About 45 minutes after that phone call, Alicia herself called me to tell me that she had just walked five feet! She was so excited. She had no problem expressing herself in the 15 minutes she spoke with me. Some of what she said: "I am on my way. I am getting better. I am moving forward and I won't stop. This is fantastic." I could hear the therapists and the nurses in the background cheering her on.

So keep up the prayers for the insurance panel that passes judgment each week. And thank God for the psychiatrist (and the team at the nursing facility). 

Blessings on you all, Mary Ann
As always, continue to pray for a full and speedy recovery
Love and Peace, Gladys
***********************************************************************************************

Tues., Sept 24, 2008:  Update from Sister Mary Ann: 
Dear All,
This morning I attended the Plan of Care for Alicia. Medication is working its miracle in keeping her mood swings stabilized. She has once again begun therapy and is making fine progress. This past week, she began standing. This is very painful but the pain is a sign that the nerves in her legs are waking up. She is eager to walk, but is as yet unable to coordinate her movements. She has full movement throughout her body but must learn--in the manner of small children--to coordinate movement. The therapists are working concentratedly on the coordination of leg movement. Every morning she asks to go to therapy and during the session is most cooperative. She has taken responsibility for her healing. She can correct her own posture; e.g., when she slouches and is told to stand straight, she does so. This is marked improvement. She can follow most commands now. Word-finding skills are growing; her conversation is fairly normal. She spends less time searching for words. Memory skills are still weak; she is undergoing object naming, orientation, and thought organization games to enable more memory.
She showed no signs of agitation when I was with her this morning. She was sleepy from the therapy session but eager to visit with me. She asked to be remembered to all the people who are praying for her.

We are all grateful for your concern and for your prayers.

Love,
Sister Mary Ann

 
 
Mon., Aug. 18, 2008; Update from Sister Mary Ann:
Dear All,
Since I last wrote, Alicia has been in and out of the hospital twice. The first return was to have a shunt placed in one of the ventricular cavities in the brain in order to drain the cranial fluid. She came through that procedure very well. She was back at nursing home for short time when she began to exhibit pain. The cause of the problem was not the shunt, which is working well. Rather she was suffering from a severe urinary tract infection. She remained in the clinic three days and is now back at nursing home.

I visited her yesterday and am happy to report there is greater progress in remembering words and events from her past, all evidence that the brain, relieved of pressure, is healing. More and more of the nerve endings throughout her body are awakening. For example, she now has the urge to walk. She presses her feet frequently against the wheelchair foot supports and wants to stand up. Unfortunately, she has not regained enough balance for that. But it is coming. She is eating well and growing in her ability to feed herself. I saw so many little indications of progress being made.

However, because she is remembering more, she has bouts of depression. She recalls what she used to do and realizes that she is far from doing many of those activities. She is alternately angry and sad. A psychologist is working with her as are we sisters and her brothers and sisters. We keep encouraging her, relating how far she has come.

Please keep up the prayers, especially that she might find peace within to keep on keeping on.

Love and Peace, 
Gladys

 
Sun., July 20, 2008 @ 7:30 AM
Update from Sister Mary Ann (one of about four rotating care to Sister Alicia in conjuction with immediate family members):    
Sister Alicia continues to progress in her recovery.  She had a follow-up appt at the Clinic with the neurosurgeon who was over her case. He asked her if she was up to going through testing of brain nerves to which she replied, "I am ready to do exercises as along as it helps me." She was able to follow through with most, but not all, series of commands. 
After reading the report from the health center of her therapy sessions and her progress and talking with her, the doctor told us that she has made substantial improvement. "She is doing very well for someone only 2 months from the aneurysm." He treats so many brain-injured people that his diagnosis carries great validity.

He told us that she is on an upward trajectory and that he estimates her opportunity for recovery is a year to a year and a half. However, she may reach her potential within a year. These things are not definitely predictable.

We learned from the nurse at the health center that earlier this week, the therapist got Alicia on her feet and she stood for the first time since her injury. This is a big step forward. She is also eating pureed food for all three meals, but still receives the tube feed from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. to be sure that she gets needed nutrition.

She is alert and chatted with the ambulance attendants as well as all the people we saw in the Clinic. She recognizes faces but cannot yet put names to them (but, hey, that happens to me too!). She is very focused on her work and wonders who is handling her cases and all the other concerns. She gets anxious when, in a sentence, a word will not come. But she is definitely making sense.

Keep up the prayers. They are definitely working.
Love and peace is yours always in the now,
Gladys
 
Thurs, June 26, 2008
Sister continues her recovery at the nursing facility in Bay Village.  Visitor's policy to immediate family only remains in place.  Good news is she has begun conscious physical movement, along with increased, yet minimal, verbal communication.  However, she is not out of the woods and it will be a long recovery. Continue to pray and send your wonderful "get well soon" messages.  Family members are reading these to her!  Remember, this is a miracle waiting to be shared by noneother, Sister Alicia.
 
All is well, always has been and always will be,
Gladys   
 
Please appreciate the following email message:
Date:Thu, 26 Jun 2008 03:36:52 -0700 (PDT)
From:"Gladys Martin"
Subject:  Fresh Air on NPR
To:"santiagogladys"
Hola Gladys!
 
I thought of writing you as soon as I heard the NPR program Fresh Air last night (06/25/08) from 7:00-8:00 p.m. which was about a neuroscientist who suffered from a brain hemorrage, which is what I believe happened to Sister Alicia. The speaker wrote a book whose name just escapes me, but I think it would be extremely important if you could perhaps do a search on NPR to find out, so that you could please suggest it to Sister Alicia's family. One thing that the scientist emphasized is how she recuperated thanks to having a mother who would not allow her to be overwhelmed by visitors who, inspite of their good intentions, exhausted the person. There were some other interesting ideas for how to overcome the trauma of the stroke, some of which I never heard of. Please let them know, will you? Thanks!
 
Toty 
 
Weds., June 18 @ 10:00 AM
"Alicia arrived to the nursing facility by ambulance around 4:15 p.m. As soon as she saw me (Sister), she burst into a wide smile and said, "Well!" I could tell that she recognized me. When they settled her comfortable in the bed, she said "Wow." Her family was there as well and as we chatted with her, Alicia responded with a word or two here and there, words that were appropriate to the conversation. She cannot yet speak sentences. When I told her I loved her, both in Spanish and in English, she beamed and said "Yes." We spoke to her in both English and Spanish and she replied appropriately as she was able. It is apparent that she still searches for words.

When the director of resident services, saw Alicia's responses she commented that she seems to be a prime candidate for therapy. Staff from the nursing facility had visited her at the Clinic on Thursday the 12th, was amazed at the progress that Alicia had made since then. Today the therapy department is doing an assessment." 

Your prayers have moved mountains.  Please continue to pray for Alicia's full recovery!
Love,
Gladys

Saturday, June 14, @ 11:00 AM

Sister Alicia will be transferred to a health center in Bay Village on Monday.  She will need rehab eventually but is not yet ready for the intensive program at MetroHealth. Family carefully considered many factors and thankfully found a health facility that met all of their criteria. 
 
Doctors have stated we do not have an idea on how far Alicia has come. They are amazed on her progress AND she has a long road ahead of her.  She is very much conscious. We are all eager to see her back to her old self, she more than any of us. However, we do not know how long this stage of her recovery will last. Nothing can be predicted.  Again, we will let you know when visitor policy changes.  Please remember her in prayer and continue to support one another. 
 
Continue to send her well-wishes as indicated in previous message (below).  To those who are using this communication board for said purpose know that I will deliver your message this week. 
 
Love and peace to all of you,
Gladys
 
Thursday,  June 12 @ 9:00PM
"Sister Alicia has made slow, sporadic but meaningful progress in last six days. Doctors are discussing transfering her to the MetroHealth Intensive Therapy Program.  But no decision has been made yet. Still no patient visitors allowed. Please understand this is best for Sister Alicia.  We will let you know when visitor policy changes. Thanks for your concern, prayer and support."
 
You all are wonderful!  It's true... miracles do happen when community comes together for common cause. We know Sister Alicia is proud of her community! 
 
Paz y Amor,
Gladys
 
Thursday, June 5 @ 12:00 PM
Message from Sister Alicia's family:
"Alicia is out of ICU - one level down.  She has a long way to a full recovery (of all functioning). Visitation continues to be restricted to immediate family. She shows signs of frustration with level of verbal communication, and signs of acceptance with regards to the recovery process.  What's important is she is getting better every day. Please continue to pray for her. Thank you for your ongoing support!" 
 
"We welcome and request get well cards (NO flowers at this time).  We would very much like to read these to her.  To ensure we receive your card please mail them to: Ms. Lourdes Alvarado Dorsey, c/o Sister Alicia Alvarado, Sagrada Familia Church, 7719 Detroit Ave. Cleveland, OH 44102." 
 
Praise the Lord for Sister Alicia's transition out of ICU! Continue to generate positive energy for her full recovery. 
You may also elect to send your get well message via reply to this message.  I will make sure she receives your message. (see above menu Reply option).
 
Love and Peace,
Gladys
 
 
Sunday, June1, 2008 @ 6:18 PM
Message from Sister Alicia's family: 
"Yesterday Alicia slowly began breathing on her own after doctors removed the breathing tube."  (This support system was a vital part of stabilizing her functioning from day one.) "Alicia is doing better each day. Today, although she can say very little, she has begun to speak." 
 
Oh Lord, I can't wait to hear what Alicia has to say about all of this.  
She remains in ICU...Please continue to pray for her full recovery!
Love,
Gladys
 
 
Thurs, 5/29/08 @ 12:00 PM 
Message from Sister Alicia's family:
"No real major changes yet. She is more responsive/alert. She is still in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Other than that, there's nothing much to tell. We thank everyone for praying.  Also, please share with others, limiting ICU visitation to immediate family only isn't the family's nature but hospital policy.  Thank you for your patience and understanding." 
 
Please note, visitors are allowed in the family lounge only, along with visitors/families of other ICU patients.  However, do not expect someone will be there to greet you as Sister Alicia's family is at her bedside. 
 
As always, continue to pray for a full recovery
Love and Peace,
Gladys
 
Tues., 5/27/08 @ 4:50PM
Message from Sister Alicia's Family:
"She knows we're in the room.  She remains in ICU. Her medical team is serving her well as they continue to stabilize all functioning. We are tired but remain optimistic.  We know there are many people thinking about her and are yearning to do something.  At this point, all there is to do is continue to pray for Alicia, our family and those taking care of her. Again, thank you for caring."     
 
Love and Peace to you,
Gladys
 
Mon., 5/25/08 @ 6pm
Sister Alicia continues to progress but is still not out of the woods.  I understand from her family, Sunday she began to periodically acknowledge communication from family members. "We are all taking it one step at a time as she remains in ICU recovering from the angiogram. The doctors say we acted quickly and it's a miracle she's alive."  I'm sure the power of prayer has alot to do with it as well .  
 
Please continue to pray for Sister Alicia.  Her family also asks that we pray for their father Don Felipe who is going through his own medical issue and  depends on Sister Alicia for so much.
 
Love,
Gladys
 
5/24/08 at 11:15AM
Message from Sister Alicia's Family:
"Yesterday she showed signs of conscious movement but remains in ICU.  We will communicate when something changes. Continue to keep her in prayer. Thank you for all the support. It is trully humbling."  
 
Please pray the Rosary for Sister Alicia's full and complete recovery.
Love,
Gladys
 
Friday, May 23, 2008
@ 5:06 PM - Addendum
In response to inquiries: Please NO flowers at this time, they will not reach her in ICU.  Cards are acceptable and can be sent to her at the Cleveland Clinic.  Her family will attend to cards received.   Thank you.
 
@ 4:11 PM:
Message from Sister Alicia's Family:
"Thank you for your prayers!!  She is showing progress and is in recovery. She is definitely a fighter."  ...but we already knew that about her
 
Praise God and continue to pray for a complete recovery!
Love,
Gladys
_________________________________________________________
 
 
Dear Family and Friends: 
 
In case you do not already know, Sister Alicia is in the hospital. 
 
Here's what is so:
Visitation is restricted and guarded!   
Nurse report, "She is in serious condition".  
 
If you call the Clinic you will receive her status (serious, stable etc...) and that's about it.  Suffice to say, telephone inquiries have been numerous to the extent of stressing the staff directly responsible for attending to Sister Alicia. I don't know what to say other than staff's attention should be on Sister Alicia.  Rest assured, they know they are attending to someone well loved.  
 
My observations:  
I went to see her last night and witnessed the diligent commitment of her medical team to stabilize her condition.  The process to inhibit bleeding of the brain aneurysm is promising ...along with her will to live, the many prayers from near and far, and most important, God's Will. 
 
Right now, all there is to do is PRAY for God's Will.   
 
Please honor the request of the family regarding restricted visitation and contact.  For updates on her condition, return to this website. 
 
In the name of Jesus Christ, All is well, Always has been and Always will be! 
Love and Peace,
Gladys Santiago
 
ONA (on another note):  Thank you to Ohio Hispano-Foro for offering this communication medium.

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