Sometimes our posts can get off on a tangent. Today's report will be a recap of what Neil did today without much added commentary.
Dad arrived at 7:45 AM. As is customary, Neil was dressed for the day but back in bed catching some more sleep. (The aides come by about 7 AM and get him dressed.) Dad gave Neil a brief massage to help wake him up and we looked out the window to scout out the weather for the day. Breakfast (in his room) consisted of waffles, scrambled eggs, Cheerios w/ banana, and orange juice. Eating takes a bit of time but we were done in time for Neil to brush his teeth and put on some cologne. Together we studied the calendar prior to PT that starts at 9 AM. In PT Neil first did some stair work by climbing up and down 4 stories with special focus on not favoring his stronger right leg. Then more walking with his therapist as they strolled around the gym. Then it was onto the leg press machine for more left leg strengthening. The last part of PT was spent doing various balancing exercises. All of these activities were interspersed with short rest periods. We headed back to Neil's room where he wanted his phone to text message his friend Sarah. Turns out one of the therapists he worked with today was named Sarah and he wanted to share that with his good friend. With a little help from dad, mission accomplished, and we also sent messages to his sister Alison and his friend Chloe. By this point it was 11 AM and we had a 1/2 hr before speech therapy. We got out some playing cards and spent about 15 minutes in color and number recognition together. Fred came in at 11:30 and continued to work with Neil in getting his vocal chords going and we got some sound at various points of their work. Noon was lunch time-- hamburger deluxe, fries, vegetable soup, an apple and milk. Done just in time to brush teeth before occupational therapy at 1 PM. We decided to walk down to the gym rather than use the chair. OT consisted today of various games- basketball shooting at a short basket, bowling, soccer, etc. mixed in with Q&A between Neil and his therapist. At 2:00 Lori arrived and we all headed back to the room together at 2:30 when OT was done. We played a little more Nerf B-Ball in the room and decided Neil needed a shave. The three of us got that done just in time to welcome three friends of Neil's from his school- Chloe, Rob, and Paige. After the visit, it was shower time. At 5 PM dinner ( pasta and meatballs, broccoli, garlic bread, and soup) commenced and dad left to go home to be with Eric for the evening.
My turn now. I helped Neil through a slow dinner while we chose his menu for Friday and talked about cousins, aunts, and uncles. By this time of day, he was tired and restless and needed to get up several times throughout the meal to stretch his legs and walk around the room. After he ate, Nurse John came in to say goodbye. He's moving to an acute facility for a different kind of nursing experience. We'll miss him. He had great praise for Neil's efforts and told him to keep fighting. At around 6:30 Neil wanted to crawl in bed and try a movie. We got about a half hour of Hancock in before his attention span ran out--much better than the ten minutes we got in last night. So I put his shoes back on and we took a little stroll in his chair around the building. Down in the third floor day room we said hi to Rob and Jim and their moms. They are 21 and 24 respectively--both car accident victims themselves. Down on the first floor we found the aquarium with five fish in it, scoped out the outpatient therapy facilities for future reference, raced through the hallway, and came back upstairs. Time to start getting ready for bed, so Neil brushed his teeth (sitting down tonight, because he was pretty tired) and got into bed. We had a prayer together and read a few scriptures as his eyes started to close. After kisses and "I love you"s I zipped him up in his posey bed for the night. He was still awake when I left at 9:00, but said good night peacefully, knowing that Dad would be back in the morning to start all over again.