Saturday, 8 December 2012

Friday - four weeks down, just one more to go....

Therapy was with Mad Mike today, and he started out with some fun wheelbarrow walking for Daniel on his hands, which puts weight through his arms (his arms are still not strong enough for him to straighten them in this position) and it also helps trunk strength.

Then it was down to business, with the focus again on doing sit to stand from his walker seat, and walking. He walked the whole length of the physio gym with about 3 breaks and minimal support, taking about 40 small steps at a time. At the end, because he was getting very tired, Mike put out the football and goal for him to walk towards and score! Daniel was totally exhausted but very pleased with what he had achieved, and so were we. We have also taken him off the strongest painkillers now, so he is only on ibuprofen and calpol - we have been really amazed by the speed with which he has got over the second op.

We returned to the hotel and after a bit of a play, Daniel and I did his home exercises, some of which are still a bit trickier since the hamstring lengthening on Tuesday.

We then went back to the hospital and had a lovely lunch out with Mike. We had never met him before but he is a 'friend of a friend', an ex-Brit who lives near St Louis with his family. He was a very useful source of info before we came out here, and it was so lovely to actually meet him at last. We really enjoyed ourselves and were so grateful for the incredibly thoughtful 'tastes of home' care package that he brought us, with all sorts of goodies like chocolate hobnobs, chocolate fingers and decent TEA BAGS amongst other things! Thank you Mike! When we come back next year we are hoping to meet up with the rest of Mike's family too.

While in that area we also popped into the UPS shop and picked up a mega-roll of bubble wrap, so we can transport the spare walker home on the plane without it being damaged (hopefully).

Later, back at the hotel, we ventured into the corridor with the walker, and managed a few metres along and back again. Daniel still gets tired very quickly; he doesn't really need much weight-bearing support but likes the security of someone's hands on his waist. Someone also needs to be in front of him as sometimes his legs just collapse under him, but the more we practise the more he improves, and we are hoping to give the walker several outings into the corridor over the weekend.

These photos were taken by Lucy.....

Lucy herself is getting very frustrated by the lack of outdoor space and has taken to exercising by running to the end of the corridor and back, and asking us to time her to see if she can beat her record!  Fortunately the corridor is generally empty and she is actually almost silent as she runs, so hopefully we are not annoying anyone else!

Just before bed we lifted Daniel to sit on the sofa to read a book (with Obi Starry Kenobi!) We hadn't really sat him like this for weeks because he hasn't been comfortable, but tonight not only was he happy to sit in that position, but we could really see a difference! He could sit with his legs outstretched (we assume that's a result of the hamstring lengthening, not the SDR itself) AND he also stayed upright; before surgery I would continually have to push him back up when he would slide down sideways. He also took the opportunity for a quick toe-wriggle - lovely!

It's our last weekend in St Louis this weekend and each of us has something on our list we want to do before we leave next Friday. My first priority though is to enjoy the break from 9am therapy at the hospital and the fact that we can sleep until one of us wakes up!

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