February 11, 2012
We are happy to report that Elaine finally had a solid night of sleep. She woke up rested and ready for a long day of therapy. After breakfast, Ben acted as make-up artist and put on Elaine’s face – step by step by step. He reported that it is a lot of work taking care of Elaine’s face, but he couldn’t deny that her discipline has paid off with beautiful skin.
After the makeover, Ben and Elaine went on a little walk, partly to get some fresh air and partly to see if anyone would stop them. They got as far as 7-11 before they realized that no one was coming after them and they should turn around so they weren’t late to therapy.
The morning physical therapy session was different and challenging for Elaine. She spent time standing and kicking her left leg this way and that. She also went out to the hallway where she was able to walk with while holding on to a railing. It was amazing to see her progress. The therapist continued to remind her that quality is more important than speed. He told her that playing golf again is a great goal, and that she should tell all of her therapists about that goal. They can focus portions of her therapy on increasing hand strength and overall balance which will allow her to utilize her damn fine swing.
Following that initial session, Sue and Jan popped in for a visit from San Diego. They had the chance to see her during therapy, and they both came away very impressed at her progress and determination!
Eventually, the parade of family and kids showed up for lunch with burgers and fries and shakes. Our family really knows how to shake up a place like that. All in all, Elaine had four therapy sessions today. They were all tough in their own way with moments of true grit and true laughter. One of those moments happened when Brian, Elaine’s grandson, was in the rehab room watching his Nammie work on leg exercises. It turns out that everyone was watching Nammie and no one was watching Brian. He wandered into the office connected to the rehab room and slammed the door shut. Normally, that wouldn’t be a big deal, but this door auto-locks . . . and it doesn’t take a key. You need to know a push-button combination to get in. Of course, no one in the rehab room knows the combo. Meanwhile, inside the little office, the little man yells, “Daddy!” once. Satisfied that Daddy would not be ruining his fun, Brian proceeds to rummage through the contents of the office. Meanwhile, the staff searched for the ONE nurse on the property who actually knew the combo to the door. After some time, she showed up to save the day - sort of. Unfortunately, she tried about six different combinations and still the door wouldn't open. No one seemed that nervous (except Greg). The rest of us were watching Elaine at rehab. After some serious conversations in Spanish, the nurse tried a few more combinations and the door finally opened. We rushed inside. Brian looked up and said, "Hi!" and went about business, apparently not the least bit worried about his predicament. By the time we got him out of there, Brian had banged out a few letters on the computer keyboard and poured a full cup of hot tea on himself.
Elaine also had a long visit from Greg, one of our oldest and closest friends. He came by with a boatload of cupcakes for lunch. He ended staying and visiting for EIGHT hours. We love how loved Elaine is by our friends. She is such an amazing person and her impact on every life she touches is incredibly strong.
During the visit, Elaine tasked Greg (a musical genius) to write a song about Little Darlin’ (Elaine’s left arm). He agreed that Little Darlin’ deserved a song and committed to start working on it right away.
At one point (when we thought Greg had already gone home), he called us to let us know that Elaine had walked half the length of the huge hallway in the rehab center. He wasn’t the only one impressed. She surprised the staff and surpassed the description on her charts with the mobility and strength of her left leg. All of the trainers love working with Elaine because she never stops trying and according to one, “She doesn’t really like to waste time resting!” That’s our Elaine. Determined, disciplined, and committed to getting her life back.
Elaine and company enjoyed a home cooked dinner (beats the beef stew). Vangie is staying with Elaine tonight. Keep your fingers crossed that she keeps this single room for a while.
Keep the prayers and thoughts and emails and cards coming! Elaine and family appreciated every single one!