March 9, 2011

The Reality of It All

***Last night (Tuesday) apparently I crashed for over 12 hours and this blog never got finished or posted.  I am going to post it as is b/c there's so much happening today I want to start a new one later***

     So I am taking a new approach to today's blog.  I usually write about the previous day or if I have the energy at the end of the night I'll write about that day.  Seeing as how today is my last full day of rehab I thought I would try to write throughout the day when I had breaks.  We'll see how it goes.  Currently I am awaiting my first session which is speech at 8:30 so I have a few moments to reflect on yesterday

Oh no they didn't
     Monday I had a full schedule including an hour class on how to prepare to drive again which was 45 minutes too long.  Another class I had was on the process/transition of leaving therapy.  It had 6 components.  Now I will admit to being late as the previous session ran over so I got there just about 10 minutes into it.  They were telling us about check-out..which feels like a hotel..and how they'd like you to leave around 11:00.  What the process would be that day and how your meds and equipment needs were being arranged.  Now remember this was a 30 minute class.  The presenter was done with all of this information within 15 minutes and spent the better part of the remaining 15 minutes explaining how to fill out the survey we would receive in about 2 weeks after our release.  She went on to explain that maybe your goals weren't completely met during your stay at Brooks but that shouldn't be reflected on the survey as Brooks is only a part of your recovery.  Boiled down it was pretty much indirect instructions on how to properly score Brooks on this independent survey.  Now I understand how feedback and such is important but really?  However we are not done.  It was as if some invisible check mark now floated above my head that I attended the class as everyone from dietary to nurses to cleaning staff and beyond that I came in contact with afterwards mentioned the survey ~ some even hinting how I could mention them by name if I felt they deserved to be. I just was so taken aback by this unified commitment to scoring well on a survey.  Oh well I guess the pressure to score them well on a survey is better than being expected to tip everyone.

Greatest Snack Ever
     My nurses keep saying I am one of their easier, more independent patients and often they'll just come and hang out.  Simply due to my schedule I do know my evening nurses better than the 2 other shifts.  Cat and Dalin and just so sweet and have been incredibly encouraging (OK I was planning to mention them on the survey) along the way.  Last night after telling them how tired I was of the food and jello and such they said they were going to come up with a new snack for me.  Now some of you may know that after I had my first baby I switched my occupation from Auditor (not IRS) to Pre-School teacher.  Which I desperately miss ~ I'll admit.  I taught K5 at the YMCA in VA Beach.  Now afternoon snacks (after naps) were the most fun.  Once or twice a week depending on my lesson plan we would have a cooking class of some sort..silly things like painting with food or edible cars.  Anyway, when I wasn't being a culinary instructor there was one snack that was always the favorite....peanut butter with graham crackers and apple juice.  Don't you know that is what Dalin brought me last night!! First off I hadn't had peanut butter since my incarceration  hospitalization never mind something as crunchy and tasty as graham crackers.  I'll admit I wanted to glob the peanut butter on but I didn't, really I didn't! I was too worried about swallowing issues...there were none :0)  Now I ask you...knowing we are all beyond Nap and Snacks....when was the last time you had graham crackers, peanut butter and apple juice?  If you want to be transported back to those early days of after school snacks just treat yourself to this...I won't tell (maybe).

*******Back to today**********
     Blogging between sessions really hasn't worked out like I thought it would.  It feels as if they are loading on sessions and each session is pushing me to the max.
Speech therapy was actually filled with exercises today that I feel will shed enlightenment into your life.  So here's what we are doing...you need to lay down flat (no pillow).  Lift your head 30 times with your shoulders staying down so you can look at your toes...this needs to be nice and smooth.  The next exercise is in the same position.  This time you are going to hold your head up for 30 seconds..remember shoulders stay down.  I know what you're thinking..oh how easy...yeah do each in sets of 5.

Ok you I told you above about the survey ~ well I realize they have been using subliminal messaging.  I noticed today that next to the door as you leave the Gym at eye level ~ wheelchair eye level that is ~ a laminated flyer with a 5 and happy smiles and the phrase our goal is 5.  Until the survey class yesterday I thought this meant meeting the goal of attending all 5 days of P/T.  I now see it for what it really is...SCORE US 5.

So it feels as if the therapists have reveals their true sadistic side today.  For fun my PT had me tackle the stairs.  Mind you I have no stairs in my life so why we did this I don't know.  I have never sweated so much so quickly!  Went up and down the 12 steps 4 times!!! Cha and she ended with taking real steps not putting two feet on one step....I am still wiped as I haven't had my nap today :-(

Lunch was a new adventure as I got to have a salad..Swallowing still being an issue that is evident here yet.  While I can eat small amounts of salad I have to drink after every bite.  But hey it is new so I am sooo happy. 

My equipment has arrived.  So I am now the proud owner of a walker and a tub chair made by Rubbermaid of all companies.

Don't forget what number do they want me to score?
Last night in rehab
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