Wednesday, November 21, 2012

SPINE FUSION Acute rehab- what do you mean, go home?

There must be some mistake.  I'm not allowed to get out of bed alone, take a shower, go into the bathroom alone. . . and you think I'm ready to go home alone?  And as for walking with a cane?  There's no one home with one of those canvas safety belts to catch me.

Nevertheless, the top PT is here again with the cane.  We not only go into the garden, but we walk around with the cane.  We go out through the gate and practice stepping onto and off the curb with the cane.  I note that the curb here in the parking lot is rather low and safe looking.  It's too hot for a really prolonged walk thru the garden - much of it is not shaded.

Back inside and into the event room.  No, there's another room here called gym.  It has a tiny step stool that I still doubt I'll ever use.  And THE STAIRS.  Someone has made a set of four wooden stairs with handrails--looks like it was once a stage set.  I go up a couple steps with the cane and the hand rail.  Then the PT sends me to the top and tells me to come down alone with the cane and NO touching the hand rails, not even steadying myself by touching them with a shoulder.  She stands near the bottom, encouraging me.  I decide if I ever get out this place, I'm definitely never going down any stairs with a cane. 

They want me to go home Friday.  I panic.  Loudly.  My daughter is not coming to town until the 23rd.  I live alone.  And I definitely will have to get out of bed alone, go to the bathroom alone, get cleaned up alone, fix food alone. 

The next morning there are five people in my room including the head doctor.  They give me the Medicare rules, which are incomprehensible.  It's either go home or go to a nursing home.  We finally agree that I can wait until my daughter comes to get me on Sunday.  I have some time to consider how to get food when I get home. 

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