Update: Tuesday, 11:45a.m.
She's awake, but her road to recovery is far from over.
Elon University cross country runner Molly Offstein, who was struck by a car while jogging March 6, is now "minimally conscious" after months of being in a vegetative state, her mother, Laura Byrnes, wrote in a Facebook post Monday.
A photo posted Sunday shows Offstein awake and holding a red running baton while giving a "thumbs up" sign in her hospital bed, which Byrnes called, "a good moment."
Offstein had spent several weeks at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta battling her traumatic brain injury (TBI) before being transported in May to the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Maryland, her home state. There, Evan Offstein — her father — said the proximity has made things a little easier for them. As for her progress, he said she will have to continue a number of different regimens. Her eyes are open more and her sleep pattens are more stable, the post said. She's also able to respond to commands, but Evan Offtein said she lacks consistency. He said some of the treatments are "unique or innovative" and that the staff "seems eager here to engage in such experimental treatments."
"They are definitely throwing the kitchen sink at her in terms of therapies — physical, occupational, and speech," Evan Offstein wrote in a Facebook post. "In addition, they have some unique therapies such as intensive pet therapy and music therapy."
Offstein was struck by a car at 7:30 a.m. March 6 while crossing University Drive at O'Kelly Avenue. According to Town of Elon Police, the driver had a green light and was traveling below the speed limit. No charges have been pressed.
Since then, the Elon community has showered support in numerous ways. More than 100 people attended a vigil for Offstein Mach 9 and Elon's Track and Field Team hosted a "Lap for Molly" at its Phoenix Invitational April 15. A GoFundMe page has raised more than $51,000 to help with medical expenses.
Evan Offstein said that while this new update is uplifting, there is still a challenging path ahead.
"The road ahead is uncertain and, as mentioned below, the amount of ambiguity attached to TBIs creates a level of cruelty that, at times, it tough to endure," Evan Offstein wrote. "With the passing of time, though, more variables will start to fall in place and the longer term/future prognosis will shake out. Until then, we, quite literally, take it hour-by-hour."