I told you about the switch-o, change-o yesterday. Early this morning, it wasn't sticking but after morning meds and getting dressed and ready for the day, Shannon did well. In fact, in the afternoon session of therapies she did amazingly well. She walked on the treadmill for 10 minutes without stopping thanks to her dad telling Brian Regan jokes. She took a 2 minute rest, got up and did another 5 minutes at a faster past! She was huffing when she got off but wow! She did so well. She scored 6 goals against a volunteer in beach ball soccor. She typed a page from a book that the therapist read to her. She was a little impulsive on that but even then she would go back and correct her mistakes!!
And then our favorite--speech therapy. She used mosaic tiles form a variety of shapes, according to very specific instructions. She did well with that. But what was way awesome was she passed the drinking water test!!! Yahoo!! No more thickening her drinks! Later in the evening the therapist called her back on the phone to tell her she could also have ice cream and .... SNOWCONES!! She is really excited to get that SnowOasis lime something or another snowcone! We will have to figure out how to get one up here to her.
Another major change we saw today was in her cognition. Her understanding of what was going on around her and her interaction....it's quite hard to explain but it was awesome. She engaged well in conversation, was focused on her goals and let that Shannon humor come through many times. For example, after she had passed the fluids test, the speech therapist told her she would need to go down and ask the doctor if he would agree to change orders. So she walked down to his office, opened the door, asked him to make the change and then made her case for why he should agree, citing the comments made by the therapist, her skill at swallowing, and her general desire to move forward. Then she flashed a great smile which sealed the deal. There were ups and downs during the day and like they keep telling us--this is a roller coaster ride. Later in the day when her medication had worn off, the anxieties hit again. That was not fun for her or for us. We got the nurse to get the go ahead to give her the medication for anxieties earlier than prescribed. We are so glad that we did. She had a delightful evening with her YW's president, her husband and Shannon's sister Kate. She had a great time laughing and talking with them because the anxieties were subsiding.
Today we had the chance to meet with a program called, "Rehab Without Walls". Rehab without Walls basically is just that; they do the rehab but not inside a hospital. They come to the home and into the community and whatever else the individual might need. They are currently working with our insurance company to get it approved which will make it easier leaving the hospital before Shannon is where we need her to be.
An assessment was done, during the meeting with the Social Worker from that program. It was interesting to see how well Shannon did in many of the areas. She was asked to count to 40 by 3s starting at 1. She struggled a little but she got it. Then she was asked to count to 40 again ALTERNATING adding 3 and 5. She thought for a minute and then explained how many iterations of that combination it would take to arrive at the number. She had basically determined an algebraic equation to come up with her answer which was much more complicated than the answer sought. It was funny! Then she was asked to count down from 100 by 7s. She got down to about 84 and made a mistake. She went 4 or 5 more steps down and then she said, "oh wait, then that means I made a mistake at 84 and it should have been 86.", then jumped back down to where she was in counting and finished with a breeze! She was pretty amazing! But the assessment also pointed out the areas where we still have challenges. Short term memory, implusivity, problem solving, etc. Hence, Rehab without Walls feels that they can show the insurance company that the services they can provide will deliver the needed benefits. So we hope that happens soon.
One last note. Shannon did amazingly well on her fluid and calorie goals today. She was determined to make sure that today was a day that she would meet and surpass them. The clearance to have milkshakes helped out a lot in both areas. She is calling and placing her own order for her meals and understands that if she tells them to place extra butter on her green beans that this will help her meet her calorie goals. (Wouldn't we all like to have extra butter because it was good for us.) So after a few rough days, today was a pretty great day. Good progress in many areas and greater understanding for how to deal with challenges. We are so appreciative for the continued love and blessings of our Heavenly Father as He guides and strengthens us along unchartered (for us) waters.