Don is showing improvement every time one of the rehab specialists works with him, and he’s so happy to be wearing real clothes! Holly got him standing up a few times and using both legs and both arms in just a 30-minute session today.
I lost count of the number of doctors, nurses, techs and rehab staff I met today. Don’s in no danger of being left alone for any period of time (like he was in Sierra Vista)! However, the philosophy of the unit is to aim for steady improvement which includes rest, to avoid a roller coaster affect on his improvement. He will have about 3 hours of rehab per day, with 30-minute to 1-hour sessions interspersed with rest. And he’s now on a schedule for dialysis on Tues-Thurs-Sat afternoons. So people interested in visiting can come M-W-F or T-T-S mornings or anytime on Sunday, just avoid the lunch hour 12-1.
Family members are invited to join their loved ones for lunch in the lunch room at noon. (Other meals are in their rooms.) I got to share this with Don today for the first time, and we met a few other patients. Don’s now able to have more choices for food, so he can avoid broccoli and carrots, but he’s learning that some of the things he wants are not on his diabetic-renal diet. He couldn’t have any cookies, whole-wheat tortilla wrap or lasagna – his first choices. But the meatloaf with gravy, dinner roll and sugar-free apple pie almost disappeared from his tray, with very little help from me. He ate more than he has since his surgery – the appetite is returning along with the improvements in movement and strength. Hurray!
Don’s roommate Gary has similar problems, as he also has diabetes, but he sadly has Parkinson’s as well and isn’t very communicative. His lovely wife Yoshi is a delight, and we’ve enjoyed getting to know them. Yoshi even offered to help Don with his dinner since I had a dinner ‘date’ tonight.
I left the hospital just before 5 pm to meet our SKP friends JerrieLea and Ron Hopf for dinner at Mama Luisa’s. They are just passing through after a long road trip with their dog Dakota (and without their RV), headed back home to North Ranch near Congress and Wickenburg. (No flooding at the North Ranch park, thankfully, although lots of washes flooded in Wickenburg yesterday.) It was nice to see them again after more than a year, and so happy they took the time to stop here. They plan to visit Don in the morning on their way northwest.
One day at a time. Lots of progress in just one day. We celebrate every small step forward!