Sunday, November 18, 2012

SPINE FUSION - Rehab - the home stretch?

Did I already mention the mystery neurologist who insisted on knowing all the pressures in my life outside rehab.  I still wonder why that phrase "not doing your best" came up again.

Things have started speeding up; I'm getting little pieces of paper with the day's schedule of as many as six occupational and physical therapy appointments, sometimes back to back.  The OTs also have some exercises for me, but no shower.

 And my walks are getting longer.   Today the hallway leads us right into an elevator and, imagine, right out into the hospital garden!  There is a long wall with plaques about the history of the hospital.  The long walk in front of it is blessedly in the shade, so we walk along there with my walker.  Bliss.  A hospital garden that the patients actually get to use!  Of course, I'm not allowed out here alone.  There should be a photo to send back to that hospital with the not-so-accessible koi pond.

A friend visited me in the Glendale hospital right after my surgery and brought me a copy of Vogue.  I had a little trouble identifying with fashion mags right then.  Now I leaf through the photos.  There, believe it or not, is a model wearing what I'm sure is a shockingly expensive black leather belt that looks so much like my brace (except for the velcro) that I don't know whether to laugh or ... laugh. 

Today brings a new and scary addition to my PT!  A cane.  All of a sudden I wish I had done more of those balance exercises, like the standing on one foot position, for instance.  After those first few days in the hospital in July, since I couldn't drive with that unreliable right leg, I would walk 2 blocks to the market.   The bag person would hang my two grocery bags on the walker, and I'd make my way safely back to my room. 

Now it takes me about two seconds to confirm that the cane is not that secure.  What if my right leg has one of its weak moments?  Even going out in the hall where there's no bed to fall into takes a minute to get ready for.  The PT puts the canvas belt around my waist, but she's littler than I am, and I wonder if she really can catch me with it if I fall.  (Of course, right now, she's a lot stronger than I am.)  Most people are. 

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