Hugs and High Fives


With all the stuff happening with my Mom, I hadn’t really paid much attention to how I am walking and what’s going on with my hip.  I am pleased to say that I don’t use my cane much, though I do have it in the car in case I go somewhere unfamiliar or with a lot of people around.  Most of the time I don’t use it – Wow! that is so cool!  All the hard work over the past few months has really paid off.  This week as I was coming back from the adult family home to pick up papers to sign, I decided to go visit my friends at Stafford Health Care.  I have planned to do it, but my goal was to be at a point that I could walk in there without my cane and be about the way I was walking when I fell.

When I walked in, it felt very familiar, as if I had come home.  I went over to the therapy room first and surprised the therapists.  Most of the ones I worked with are still there, Tony left to be a substitute at different centers Consonus contracts to; Sebrina has moved to Florida.  But Carol was there – we spent many hours together and she  devised new games to help me stretch parts of me that weren’t working as well.  I forgot to ask her if she is doing “Tape My Butt” with any one – she had a great time doing it with me.  And it worked.  Marilyn is still there and I had a hug from her; Michael is still there and showed me pictures of his daughter, now 6 months old.  Marion who was my occupational therapist was there and was pleased to see how well I am doing, plus a couple of therapists I hadn’t worked with but know me.  Arthur is now full time – he was a substitute and was away for a bit.  When he came back, the other therapists wanted to surprise him because they kid him about his mustache.  So someone found some stick-on  mustaches and had them all on when he came back to the therapy room.  I was the only patient there and they gave me one as well – was he surprised to see us all with hair on our upper lips.  He laughed and was up for a group picture as well.  They did a lot of kidding around but they also did a great job of helping all of us improve so we could go home.  It felt good to hear them say I am one of their success stories.

I went down tot he first floor to see Eleanor, she was my aide most of the time and a wonderful woman.  She had to do everything for me in the beginning and took wonderful care of me.  As I got better she began to tell me “You can do ti, I’m not doing it for you any more”.  yet when I had that terrible flare up and she found me bawling my eyes out sitting on the toilet, she was a warm loving Mama Bear comforting me and helping me to do things.  She doesn’t suffer fools gladly, but when you need help, she is there for you.

I was so glad she was working that day, so I went down the hall until I heard her voice.  I found the room she was in and stood in the doorway until she saw me.  Then I stepped away a bit so she could finish with her patient in that room.  I got a big hug from her and she was delighted to see me walking without a cane.  She did her job well and I am so very grateful to her.  She too said I am one of her success stories and it was lovely to have such a warm welcome.  I also stopped by the nurses station and said Hello, most of them I recognized and they recognized me.  I felt so at home there – though I have no desire to go live there again.  I have said I would miss seeing all my friends when I left to go home and it still feels that way.

I didn’t see Katrina because she was doing showers on the third floor and I don’t think LeAnn the nurse was working that day, nor did I see Theta – I was sorry not to see them and give me hugs as well.  But I plan to go back again ever once in awhile.  They said very few people come back to visit – I wonder why.  In spite of the pain and difficulties during those 8 weeks, it was a very positive experience for me, all those wonderful people made the difference.  I am so glad I went to visit, I was delighted to see them and it was wonderful to have such a warm welcome.

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