Monday, August 25, 2008

Dropping the C-Bomb Part 4

I'm transported from one Portland (Oregon) hospital to another for intensive rehabilitation.
I have a daily schedule of therapies, including A.D.L (assisted daily living), speech therapy,
physical therapy, recreational therapy and occupational therapy.

A.D.L. is so I can learn to get dressed, brush my teeth (and hair), and even (heaven forbid) wash up.

Speech therapy, in my case, doesn't involve speaking so much as doing puzzles and mazes, and games like seeing how many words I can come up with that start with the letter "f". 

Lets see how I do--words that start with "f":
and let's not forget the f-word that shall not be spelled in full--f--k.

Physical therapy is just that--physical activity to build up my weak left side. In the beginning, I can't do much, so I do things like sit in a chair and move my arms, lay on a table and move my legs. I even get on a makeshift exercise bike.  

At recreational therapy, I get practice having fun in my altered state. For example, I tell the therapist I play keyboard and guitar. The next day, I am provided with a keyboard.  At one point I will join others on my floor on a "field trip" to lunch.  Our goal, is to make sure we get correct change back, and find our own way back to our rooms.

Occupational therapy helps me re-learn other essential activities like making Mac and Cheese and doing laundry. Most importantly, I practice carrying a laundry basket while going up and down the stairs.

I do this every day for a week that seems like a month.

There is some debate as to how well therapy is working.  A social worker for a brief period talks about getting me a full-time caregiver.

Perhaps hearing this talk helps me turn things around.  As if by magic, I find myself able to walk without help. I'm walking laps outside the hospital.

It's not magic, though, that makes this possible.  I attribute my achievements to the fact the swelling in my head is going down, thanks to steroids.

Did I mention steroids suck!?!

After more than two weeks total in  the hospital,  I get released from the kookoos nest.

Now the fun really begins.

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