Mike Day 65: Happy Easter

April 24, 2011

Family, Health, Mike

Good morning…and Happy Easter.  What a beautiful morning to commemorate the Resurrection!  This morning it is truly evident that Spring has sprung in Pennsylvania. 

Day one at Rehab was really quite surprising to me.  I can’t say whether or not it is the increased movement and being out of bed more or just that Mike improving daily that is improving his cognition and awareness…but for the most part, he is improving in awareness daily and yesterday it was kind of an exceptional leap.

 He was sleeping in the wheelchair when I got there yesterday…dressed in scrubs since I had not had time to get any clothing in there for him when we left the specialty hospital…and there was no rousing him.  I learned he had PT…and walked 60 feet.  Speech where he trialled swallowing, but didn’t.  OT in the getting ready f0r the day and getting dressed I believe.   

Our niece (one of Mike’s god-daughters) and her husband arrived while he was sleeping in the chair.  What a good guy her husband is…raised by a family who places importance on family values by my observation, he is a wonderful man!   Anyway, they stepped out while Mike was put back to bed and the simple act of putting him to bed woke him up, refreshed and happy.  When our niece and nephew returned he greeted them with smiles and pure joy to see them.  It seemed clear that he knew them…but when she asked if he knew who she was he said no.  I really think though, it was connecting her proper name with the face he knew and recognized.  When we told him her name it was kind of a lightbulb moment.  When they left and she said goodbye I prompted him to give her a hug and kiss.  She bent down, he kissed her and picked his arm up, put it around her and patted her back.  What a poignant moment…he loves his nieces tons and to see him relate that way filled my heart.  Such a short time ago that would not have been possible.  How far he’s come!

Later our old neighbor stopped by.  This gal and her family were wonderful neighbors and we have remained friends.  They, as well as their church, have been praying for Mike’s needs and she checks in on us periodically.  When she arrived she asked Mike if he knew who she was and he ruefully said no.  She explained…and the lightbulb definitely went off…and had the lightbulb moment face and said OHHHHH yes!  They had a nice visit and he was perfectly charming.

A bit later we looked over the gym clothing I had purchased so he’d look spiffy during his rehab.  I wanted things loose enough to be easy to put on and off and most of his stuff was  shrunk and comfortable and more trim.  My daughter and I had a great time picking out workout wear, jammies, lightweight shoes etc. He seemed to like everything (well, he was pretty indifferent really) except the shoes.  I tried them on him.  He looked at them.  Critically.  And with a puss on his face.  I said “don’t you like them”?   The face and the shake of his head told me all I needed to know.  I persisted…”do you want me to take them back”?  His head nodded.  Well good.  He knows what he likes and doesn’t and he didn’t like those!  (The Physical Therapist too preferred his standard tie kix I had also brought.)

Then the stroll to agitation and some aggression.  His poor body is wracked with what I can only call spasms when he gets agitated and he can’t stay still.  It’s almost convulsive looking movement…but no convulsions.  It’s very difficult for me to watch this because I am sure he is suffering.  It makes me cry every time.  A wee little anxiety pill seemed to do the trick and  smoothed things out…I came home later and took my own wee little anxiety pill.  I try not to take those darned things…they make me feel so hung over, even the little old lady dose I am on.  But I sometimes lately am finding all of this pretty overwhelming and so I give in and take one so I can try to sleep without interruption.  In his state of agitation yesterday he asked three things.  Where’s Mikey?  Mikey’s our son who hasn’t been over so far this week.    Where’s Zolly?  I swear, if I wouldn’t show up for a month the only one he’d miss would be that dog.  At his most tortured and anxious state he asked “Did you have enough money for those things?”  I presume the clothing I bought him.  I reassured him that I certainly did.  But took heart…each of these instances were examples of his increasing awareness.  And I am so thankful.



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