This morning is the first time I’ve been able to get to a real computer to write. I’ve been recovering from double knee replacement since June 26th. It’s been a painful journey offset by all my loved ones, friends, and neighbors taking the time to visit, call, run errands, make dinners, care for my gardens, and pray for me. The picture at the left shows the children from the neighborhood waiting for me when I got home. They were so cute. They made the sign with a few of their favorite things – Green Bay Packer penant, glitter, butterflies, and glitter. So adorable.
There have been moments of hilariousness especially at the rehab center. One of the residents there was an Italian lady who still had her accent. She moved here in 1961. She always would say, “You-a nice-a lady. You-a have a boyfriend?” She made institutional dining a hoot.
The stories from many of the patients were interesting. A Polish lady during World War II was forced to work in German gardens to raise vegetables and cook. She was a twelve year old at the time. For three years she did this. No schooling during that time. One gentleman was in the Air Force stationed in England during WWII. He learned to play darts. He has a hand-carved wooden set of darts that he acquired at that time that he still has. He was wheel chair bound learning to walk again but quite the fireball in the chair.
Bingo was a popular event. My roomie at the time was quite a winner. She’d come back winning a quarter or two. I didn’t realize that Bingo was electronic now. Instead of the twirling ball with all the numbers/letters it’s a little yellow thing that comes up with the card square. How un-fun is that?
Physical therapy was tough. You take double your pain meds about an hour before you go because you’re going to be stretched till you can’t stand it. My therapist was wonderful – Jaime. She had a black belt in tai-kwon-do, knew acupuncture, and quite adept at her job. My favorite machine there was the recumbent bike which relieved you of your stiffness. Wish they had one of those on my floor. I’d be on it all day.
Carrie was my Occupational Therapist who taught me how to do things for myself with assistance from a few odd little tools. Re-building your ability to help yourself is essential. You feel helpless at first because you can’t get your legs into bed. Then you find all kinds of ways to do it. Just putting your socks and shoes on was a huge accomplishment at the time.
I have a long way to go but feel so much better than when I entered the rehab center. Just saying, there’s no place like home.