Friday, June 5, 2009

Thursday

Today (Friday) will be mom's second complete day at Spaulding. Today she will start her therapy programs. Yesterday (Thursday) was her assessment day. I was not aware of what her schedule for the day would be, so I did not plan to be present for any apecific therapies. I just wanted to get there at a decent time in the morning so I could be ptlresent, meet her team as they milled in and out and just spend more quality time with mom.

I got there at about 10:20 am, and mom had already had her Speech and Swallow. She had accomplished a lot - she ate a container of applesauce, a 'big thing' (her words) of (thickened) orange juice, and an Arrowroot cookie. She is now scheduled to eat once a day at lunch time, with the S&S therapist. She will remain on her tummy tube feedings as well, until further notice.

I arrived during her Physical Therapy. The folks at Spaulding are very happy to have family around and they look to family to be an important part of the recovery process so I didn't feel like I was interrupting anything today (even though I feel that in the future it will be important for her to have therapy without a family member there, to help her gain sense of independence and to keep from being inevitably distracting to her). Mom's PT was a really nice woman named Jolyn. Today she concentrated on helping mom with right-side awareness and balance. Because mom can't utilize her right side, she needs to learn to control her entire body balance and movement with her left side. She did this exercise sitting up. Then, Jolyn, her assistant, and mom got her into a wheelchair. That was exciting because it was mom's first time with the wheelchair. I was desperate to comb out mom's hair so I was thrilled that Jolyn wanted mom to sit in the chair for at least a half an hour. Mom was a sport and allowed me to finish her hair even though, by the end, she couldn't wait to get back to bed.

Jeff the Occupational Therapist was our next visitor. His assessment was more focused on things mom could do while in bed. There were few physical tasks for her to perform, and then lots of questions - many of the same questions mom has been peppered with for the past 2 weeks by all of her doctors. Sometimes, when mom is really tired, she gets some of the easier ones wrong. (This try, it was 1940-something instead of 2009, even though she may have answered 2009 just a couple hours before. When she is tired, all bets are off.) Mom did okay with Jeff but clearly she was exhausted. Jeff made a note that Dolly should not be scheduled for back-to-back therapies and should have some recovery time in between her therapy blocks.

Jeff said that Dolly would need some comfortable clothing and sneakers (preferably with Velcro-closures) for her therapies, so I decided I'd go to the nearby mall and pick up those things for her when I left for the day.

All in all it was a good day. Dolly is much more at ease here than she was at Brigham's, which of course, makes sense. She's still sleeping a lot a lot, which is not really surprising I guess, but I'm looking forward to even a tiny turning point with regards to her constant sleepiness and tiredness. I'm keeping my eye out for progress and I will ask her team about it when we might expect to see a small shift.

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