Elaine had another good day today. She and Fred drove down to the desert this morning. Elaine was exhausted when she got there. We are so proud of her, taking it upon herself to rest this afternoon. They got settled for the next week, and Elaine took a nap, gearing up for therapy. She had a great session with her new desert therapist. His main focus today was multitasking. The therapist talked to them about the importance of engaging both sides of her brain. He set up cones in a figure eight and had her walking around them while looking at a picture of a palm tree straight ahead (not at her feet) and singing. This had both sides of her brain working and she was able to do it, which was very exciting. Her then had her walking and counting; forwards, backwards, by 2's, still staring at the same picture. She is going to practice this at home as well. Visitors beware of the obstacle course Fred will likely have set up:)
Elaine's shoulder and arm were very sore today, so they didn't do any arm exercises. Her bunion is also sore again and very red. The therapist encouraged her to wear the shoes they cut a hole in. He stressed the importance of her being comfortable, letting her vanity go, and taking care of herself. Her also encouraged her to drive her golf cart (using both hands) and to go out and follow her friends and family around, walking around the green and different undulations to get used to different footing and surfaces. It is imperative she gains her confidence back. The longer it takes, the longer her recovery will take. He wants her to balance on her left leg, barely holding on to a anything 10-20 times a day for 10 seconds. He told them that Elaine has been very task oriented since her stroke. She had been asked to do things, or exercises, or told where to go and what to do. She needs to start thinking on her own and allowing herself to decide what she needs to do. The more she can engage her brain, and the more it works, the better. She needs to be aware of where her left arm is, and how she is walking. He encouraged her to draw, or paint to get her creative side working. He threw a statistic at them stating that the brain can do 24 things in one second. Elaine was able to do 5 today, which surprised us all, considering we have hadn't anything traumatic happen to our brain and we find it hard to do two things in a second! Nothing Elaine ever does should shock us. She is truly one of a kind!