Friday, June 14, 2019

Dad's Back at Home

At Sister's House in Citrus Heights, CA

Wednesday was dad's last Physical Therapy at the Rehab Center (he will have some therapy at home for a few weeks)...I suggested that we get him in and out of the car, and he did great.  This picture, however, was taken was not therapy, it was "HEADED FOR HOME" time.  Look at that smile!!!!

One nice benefit that they have is that they are in the far back of the complex...and I can pull the car up and one can walk right up this ramp, through the door, and their apartment is the very first one.  I gave dad the choice of walking up the ramp, or me getting his Hoveround and ride up the walk and into the apartment...he choose the walker.  With temps up in the 100's this week, I was very happy it was only in the 80's when he did this.  However, the slight incline did take a bit out of him.

Both mom and dad have Hoverounds similar to the one above...since they live so far away from the dinning hall, it gives them a way to get to their meals, and they can just pull right up to the table.  It also allows them to visit Walmart, CVS, etc., which are right across busy Greenback Lane, thankfully with street lights and nice crosswalks.

Quickly he was in his recliner, which is also a lift chair.  For his rapidly deteriorating back, dad does not take much pain relief outside of Tylenol.  His chair is his relief...if his back starts hurting, he adjusts it so it doesn't hurt anymore.  Getting up and out of chairs is very difficult, and the lift part of the chair provides way less pain for him to get up.  Unfortunately, the all of the therapist said that the lift chair also makes a person weak since the chair does all the work.  So what is be on Opioids to relieve pain, or use a mechanical device to relieve pain...he has chosen the latter.

We hope that the home health starts up real quick.  For a few weeks he will have a nurse come by to monitor his health and take Prothrombin time (PT) Blood Test, which measures how long it takes blood to clot since he is on a blood thinner.  His "PT" level was out of whack (too high) when he entered the hospital, and also went out of whack (high again) at the Rehab Center.  We think it is all under control now.  This is something he has been on for about 10 years, and it has never got out of whack before, and was probably caused by a antibiotic he was taking.

Thank you all for your prayers and concerns...they have been highly appreciated.

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Rehab Continues with Big Steps, and BIG ANNIVERSARY

At Sister's House in Citrus Heights

Who would have thought 71 years ago that mom and dad would spend their 71st anniversary in a Rehab Center?  Well, this couple spent their first fully married day, a Sunday, in a Dentist Office as Dad broke a tooth on their wedding day...the dentist pulled two teeth that Sunday, cost them around $25...nearly all the money they had at that point in their this anniversary is not much different than their honeymoon, other than the lack of privacy. 

Dad in Rehab
A week ago dad was taking four or five steps...yesterday he made it all the way from the rehab training room to his bedroom, thanks to these two guys (Andy the PT on left and Patrick the OT on right) and other trainers who are working with him.  Dad has been cycling with his arms, with his legs, lifting weights attached to his ankles, standing, sitting, standing, sitting and walking the halls.  Can't do it "alone" (without a trainer by his side) yet, but it is a good start and lots of progress. (Note, in picture above Andy is not holding him up, just there to catch him if his legs buckle.)  This past Tuesday when Andy (PT) asked him if wanted to try a walker, dad said ok....little did I know he was going to walk him out of the training room and down the hall.  Dad made it halfway to his room.  On Wednesday he made it to the nurses station.  Thursday his legs felt weak, so after exercises he called it a day...but yesterday he came back with a vengeance and walked all the way past the nurses station and into his room, walking real strong.  I follow with the wheelchair on these outings, and occasionally help a nurse or trainer get him into the right position in the bed (grab the pad under him and pull him forward to the headboard).  Not shown are the many nice nurses and aids at the center...most noteworthy is Tim and Galina, both born in Russia (or former Soviet Union lands), both who came to America within the last 15-20 years, both are fantastic nurses.  There are others too...all the people have been very nice.

My typical weekday right now is as follows:
  • Wake up at 6:45 and let the dogs out...feed them at 7:30 with a little computer time in between.
  • Breakfast or no breakfast and out the door around 9 or 9:30, getting breakfast on way if I did not eat before.  If you get to the rehab center after 10, it is hard to find parking. If mom wants to come early, I leave around 8:45 and go and get her. 
  •  Stay with dad until PT is done, sometimes OT is before, sometimes after. 
  • Typically mom wants to come in the afternoon, and I can go back to the motorhome for up to an hour before I get her...sometimes I go and get her after PT is done.  It is a long walk from the car to dad's room, so mom is riding Marcia's GoGo scooter.  After dropping her off I take care of shopping, or go back to the motorhome for awhile. 
  • Between 4 and 6 mom is ready to go home, so I go back and take her home.  
  • Sometimes I stop at Jimboys for taco salads (there don't have Jimboys in Florida, so we get our fill while here in Sacramento).  By 7:30 it is time to feed the dogs, have our dinner just before, after or during their dinner.
In all, it is only 40 miles a day that I am driving, plus a few more due to shopping.  In between there is time to visit with Marcia, Arny, Sandy, and last Saturday I watched Euleda while Sandy and Arny went out to dinner.  Where I typically go to sleep after midnight, I find myself falling asleep between 10 and midnight most nights now.  Yesterday I had time to cut Skruffy's hair, and Bubba is today...since it is Saturday, there is no PT, so I don't feel the need to be there.  So THAT is why my blog postings are few and far between, but on facebook I have posted a few pictures since most of the family is on facebook.  We are hoping for an exit date late next week...fingers crossed.