Physical therapy is done!

Yesterday was my last day with the physical therapist. I achieved a very high score on all of the tests for balance and endurance. It was a substantial improvement over last week and I think it’s due to my stubborn independence and just wanting to try to resume a somewhat normal life. Basically, the results of yesterday’s tests result in me not needing any assistance in walking, i.e., a cane or walker. However, when walking outstide on the uneven sidewalks and other outdoor pavements, I prefer to have the cane with me to help my balance, but there are stretches where I can walk unassisted. Very exciting … and now on to new challenges!

Strength and love,
Seth

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100 feet, 500 feet, Green card … DISCHARGE!

Reached quite a milestone today in physical therapy (PT): I walked 500 feet with the walker and earned my green card which allows me to walk on the ward with a walker short distances. It’s huge and a coveted prize here.

100 Feet? Today, I walked 100 feet in the PT gym without the walker. Mom was teary-eyed. And it felt great. I had to take some rests along the way, but was still able to do it. I also walked up and down the stairs in the gym a few times. Again, a very difficult task, but one that was accomplished.

The doctor and the therapists discussed my discharge over the weekend and thought that this coming Saturday would be the day. YIPEE! Now, there’s talk of discharging me earlier – possibly Wednesday. That seems a little early to me, but I’d be happy to go home any day between Wednesday and Saturday 🙂

That’s all for now. Thanks for all of the comments and well wishes and emails. I’ll write more again soon.

Strength and love,
Seth

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First day: so what was it like?

9:45 this morning – occupational therapy. OT works with patients to handle the tasks of living – dressing, washing, cooking, cleaning, etc.. First thing today was the OT therapist did intake which took a while. Then we practiced some dressing. Some I can do – I can put on my own pants and sox. I demonstrated. Then she had me put on a gown à la putting on a shirt and then she gave me a small panel with fabric and buttons and I had to button up the material like a shirt. No problem.

11am and 90 minutes of PT began. First, walking with the walker. I walked further today than ever before. And it was smoother and easier. Guess walking in the hall paid off. Then some strength testing on a bed. After that, wheelchair training. I’m not big on the idea of using a wheelchair, but it will allow me to be mobile on the ward and I can get to the recreation room where the piano is! 🙂

I lasted about 60 minutes. My blood pressure was kinda high and I was feeling winded, but thought I did well for my first day.

Middle of the afternoon, back to OT and I finally got to shave! I had this ugly growth and some of the hairs were hanging over and touching my lip and I was constantly uncomfortable. Shaving was hard! I hadn’t used my hands in that way in a long time and coordination was difficult. Not to mention that the sink was very high and the mirror was a reach to see in, but I got through it and now have a clean, smooth face.

Anyway, it was a good day and I’m looking forward to tomorrow. Will write more updates as possible.

Strength and Love,
Seth

PS: Voodoo can come and visit. I’m waiting on hearing back from the social worker on process and documentation needed. I’m so excited — must call Voodoo’s “mother” tonight to coordinate.

6:38

“Your bed at Ravdin (physical therapy ward) will be ready at 6:38,” that’s what my nurse on Rhoads said yesterday afternoon. How weird, we thought, that they could be so precise – but it gave us a glimmer of hope that we wouldn’t have to do a transfer late at night.

Turns out, my room number is 638. The room was already ready and all I needed was patient transport to bring me downstairs.

So … good morning from the physical therapy ward, Ravdin 6! I’m doing well and am up early, as nearly everyone else here, and am starting to get back to a real person’s schedule of washing up, getting dressed, having breakfast and being ready by 9 to start therapy.

There’s also the possibility for a very special visitor to come to me here: Voodoo! Can you believe it? The social worker told me that yesterday, but I have to check on the ward today and find out for sure.

I have three hours of therapy every day. I’m sure it’ll be exhausting and I’ll try to provide details on what it’s like later today. In the mean time,

Strength and love,
Seth

Working out and waiting

It’s been a while since my last update – lots has been going on.

Basically, physical therapy is my next stop. There is a facility right here in the hospital and that’s where I’ll be going. In the mean time, I’ve been working with a therapist up here on my floor nearly every day. We walk, do exercises and practice general moves to make me more self-sufficient.

I’ve been walking more and more every day. I’ve been doing more exercises every day. And I’ve even been out of bed sitting in the comfy chair nearly every day. Yesterday, I was in the chair for several hours – a record! This may not seem like a lot, but getting out of bed is important, even if it is only sitting in the comfy chair. It improves my circulation.

Otherwise, we’re waiting for a bed to open up on the physical therapy (PT) ward. I need a single room due to my contact precautions and there seem to be precious few of those down there. So I wait. And the wait is killing me.

I’m becoming quite depressed being here on Rhoads 7. I like the floor, don’t get me wrong. And I have a nice room and a great view. And of course I know a lot of the staff and enjoy being here, but I still spend a lot of time in bed and it’s getting me quite depressed and I just want out! It’s so hard.

In any case, the waiting is agony, but the progress with PT has been great. Thanks to everyone for your continued well wishes – it really helps!

Strength and love,
Seth

40 feet

40 feet may not seem like a long distance but when you haven’t walked in 5 weeks and your legs go from strong muscular thighs to chicken twigs, 40 feet is a long way to go. But that’s how far I walked today with physical therapy. It was very strenuous, but I was determined. I’m a little dizzy from it and slightly nauseous, but it’s all going away quickly. My blood pressure was virtually the same from start to finish which is a good indication.

I’m hoping to get onto the physical therapy ward soon so I can continue my strength building and get back to normal(?).

In the mean time, I’m still on the oncology floor in a comfortable room with a great view (pictures soon I hope).

So that’s all for now.

Strength and love,
Seth

(40 feet = 12 meters) 🙂