It's been hard for Neil to hear his recent test results. The therapists and psychologists are as kind as possible--praising him first for his attitude of perseverance and his friendly and cooperative manner--before they share his scores that often fall in the "below average" or "impaired" range. He understands that that's to be expected because of the injury. He also understands that he's continually improving and we're all working and hoping for a near full recovery. But it still hurts to have those scores stated out loud. As I see his face drop a little my heart aches, but I also recognize that his reaction represents progress in two ways. First, he is growing in his ability to see the big picture, to recognize his deficits, to understand what he needs to do to fix them. Secondly, Neil is able to feel the emotion of sadness. Without that sensation he would not be able to recognize joy. Experiencing that full range of emotion is going to be so much more satisfying for him than the flat existence he was living only a few months ago.
As it turns out, Neil is not ready for Kessler's cognitive program--not just yet. For now, Neil will be spending his mornings at the high school this fall getting some help with skills that he's lost and getting a chance to socialize with teens again. (Yay!) Then we'll be off to Chester for his usual therapies in the afternoon. It will be a busy schedule, but he can't wait for school to start!