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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Dad


Dad has been living with us for two weeks now. Since he got here a lot has changed already. He seems to be getting stronger everyday, whether he likes it or not. When he came home he was pretty much using his wheelchair to get around almost exclusively. This was really pretty hard on both of us. He would have to transfer from a chair to the wheelchair, then transfer from the wheelchair to where ever his destination was, tub chair, toilet, bed. We were both getting utterly exhausted. The extra time it took for him to get to the bathroom, was creating problems with incontinence. This of course would mean having to change clothes which also wore him out. Some days we would have to change his clothes four or five times. 

His doctor at the VA Hospital ordered Physical therapy to come in three times a week. He has made great improvement with her. He doesn't like it when she is here, but I think even he has to admit that it is helping. He has a very hard time admitting it though. She does work him pretty hard. She has him walk around the inside of the house. He tries his best to talk her out of it every time. She listens patiently, even as he contradicts himself in the same sentence. He will tell her "my leg is telling me about it." She listens more. Then he tells her it's his other leg that hurts, or his shoulder, or his neck. He tries hard to talk her out of things. She sits and listens. Then kindly and relentlessly gets him up to walk anyway. 
It has made a wonderful difference! While he still fights me when I try to get him to get up and walk on the days that PT doesn't come, he is walking to the bathroom and back. This has made all of the difference in the world. Accidents have dropped down to maybe one a day, sometimes none! I know he is happy with that. He hasn't asked for his wheelchair for a week now, at least to get around the house.

He will never be able to go for a walk around the block, but he can get around in his own home. Hopefully, he will get to the point where he will willingly walk out to the porch. Just to enjoy a beautiful day.

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