This is the short and the long of it      . . . William Shakespeare

May 09 2010

Home Sweet Home

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Home is Home 450x337 Home Sweet Home

Bird Nesting on a Door

I’ve been away so long I forgot how to input my photos so that they enlarge…so, don’t bother clicking on this one. I haven’t been in my blog since March. Home still isn’t quite as sweet as I would like it. My office and back bedroom are filled with the start of my cleaning out project where the “out” never happened. Worse, I’m starting to wonder why I’m blogging.

My sister and I arrived here on February 15th and she started therapy three days  later. The first few weeks were chaotic. We slept in the living room while her room was made ready and we were adapting the house for safety reasons.

Although my garden looked sweet to someone coming from cold, snowy Connecticut, I thought it looked like crap. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and my sister likes it (what? she likes to see a lot of bare dirt?).. .but truly it’s the management that matters most. I wasn’t here in February to prune my roses.¬† I told them all they just have to make do this year. Pitch in with their best performance despite my neglect.

We have therapy appointments five days a week, doctor’s appointments, tests, shopping, laundry, cooking – I’m cooking for a diabetic and consulting with an expert on insulin – tricky stuff, insulin – doing the therapy homework….there’s just so little time left in the day that me-the-night-owl, who stayed up until two in the morning….I’m in bed by ten.

Brain plasticity is an interesting thing. We take for granted that it’s our brain doing everything for us automatically. When a part blows out, you have to build new motor pathways going the wrong way. An affected limb has to be worked enough to get the signal to the brain, and worked enough again and again to get the brain to retain the information.

Take a step? I never think about it, I just do it. Hold a glass and drink from it.? I just do it. With my sister, we go through the motions time and again training some other part of the brain to take over the job of holding a glass or taking a step. In therapy sessions the therapists stretch all the sticky joints and invent bizarre ways to play with the brain to encourage it to notice it’s got two sides of a body to recognize and control.

Despite the extra work I’m really glad to be home and my sister is happy.

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2 Responses to “Home Sweet Home”

  1. Anonymouson 29 Jun 2010 at 1:34 pm

    Hi, I’m an acquaintance of Marlene Park – got to know her on a recent trip to SF. Really like your photos AND your writing from the heart style. I took care of my dad after a stroke. It is daunting, but many do make a nearly full recovery these days. (He did not, but was more than ready to go.) Ask your doctor what to do if a seizure comes – he started having many and they told me only after he was gone that this was not uncommon among stroke victims. Hope it is not a card your sister holds, but important to add to your list of self-education projects.

  2. Suzion 29 Jun 2010 at 10:33 pm

    Thank you so much for your kind words. And you’re right, it is daunting. It’s a full time job (as you well know!) We are very lucky that Santa Cruz is the therapy capital of the world..we have fabulous therapists and we’re making slow but steady progress!

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