It's going to be another busy day today! First, Dale has school from 8:25 - 10:25; then, we get to go home for an hour (I'll be tending my sick Katie); it's off to PT at 12:30, followed by SP at 2:00; we rush back to school to pick up my girls; home for a few hours to clean, fix dinner, and get ready for church; we'll attend the church service from 7:00 - 8:30 or so; and finally, back home to collapse gratefully on the couch! I am thankful for each therapy session Dale gets to attend; however, they definitely make a full schedule.
Dale had a pretty rough day on Monday. I realize he had several "days off" in a row due to Thanksgiving Break, but I don't think that was to blame for his severe shakiness. I allowed him to sleep in Monday since I had to leave Katie and Emily home sick anyway. When I went to help him get ready for the day, I was almost shocked by the extent of his jerking movements. I have not seen his limbs jerk quite that badly since he started this improving trend. I helped him quite a bit with dressing; he combed his hair and brushed his teeth by himself. Then it was time to tackle the stairs. Dale has become quite fearful of walking down the stairs. It seems all he can think of is falling. At one point, I could simply hold his hand while he kept the other hand on the rail while stepping down carefully. On Monday that was not possible. Dale kept stumbling, almost as if his legs kept giving out on him. I tried several different "holds" that didn't seem to help at all; he kept needing to sit down on the steps to avoid falling backwards. (Falling backwards going downstairs is obviously not as bad as the opposite, but it still undermines Dale's confidence.) We made it to the landing between flights, Dale crying and saying, "I wish I was downstairs already." I just about carried him down the next flight, standing beside him and pulling him up against me with my arm around his waist. Even with this added support, Dale was jerking wildly and scared stiff. He even told me, "I'm terrified!" We stopped repeatedly to allow him to calm down before attempting the next step. Finally, we were once again on solid ground. I guided Dale around the corner of the couch so he could sit down. He was stumbling badly by now with every step; I was so afraid he would go into a seizure. He half fell/half sat down on the couch, crying hard. I stayed by him for a few minutes, reminding him over and over, "Dale, you're safe now; you're sitting down. You're safe." I waited until he had calmed somewhat, then handed him a pop-tart (comfort food) to enjoy while relaxing. Thank the Lord, we didn't need to leave for PT for an hour. Dale just sat, relaxed, and watched TV. This time allowed him to lose most of the jerking behaviour, as well as restore his confidence that he could get through the day. He continued to be very shaky the rest of the day, but he did well overall.
PT went well, especially considering the rough start to the morning. Dale struggled a bit while getting on/off the exercise bike and other equipment, but I stayed close enough that he felt safe enough to keep trying. That was the important thing. Eventually the therapist took Dale into the smaller pediatric gym to work on OT stuff. Dale didn't think twice when she had him get down onto his knees to work at a low bench; she and I shared a grin about that! When she and Dale were playing catch (still standing), I was absolutely amazed by how well Dale released the ball each time! Always before, his left hand would almost fight with his right to hold on to the ball, causing him to have trouble throwing a ball or dropping a bean bag. On Monday, his left hand worked beautifully with his right; he threw the ball or bounce-passed it just fine---no hesitation whatsoever. I have not seen that since his accident! (I know it seems like I say that alot, but with each improvement, the statement holds true!)
Overall, Dale is doing quite well. I was talking to my husband the other day (something I try to do regularly!) about Dale's progress. We were excited in looking back at just how far Dale has come in less than four months. From not even knowing if he would wake up, to seeing him scratch his nose on his own, to watching him throw a ball with ease---there are not enough words to express our joy and thankfulness! Our God is miraculous; there is healing in His very breath; He has chosen to heal Dale and bring him through this "re-becoming" process, and we are awed by the chance to watch Him work. The six-month mark since Dale's accident will be the first week of February; imagine what we will be thanking God for then! I can't wait to look back at the one-year mark and see just how incredible our God's healing of Dale will prove to be. Gives me goosebumps just thinking about it!
Guess what I discovered in a corner of the dining room? Three boxes of Christmas decorations! It looks like one of the girls wanted to "help" me by clearing off the dining table. Unfortunately, their help did not extend to actually putting the decorations where they belong---around the house. They simply stashed them in a corner for later! Oh, well---thank You, Lord, that someone at least tried.
John 4:35 - 36 "Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest. And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together."